Epitaph Records, This Is An Intervention

The Jaded Punk

By Dan Ozzi


Hi, Epitaph Records. Come in, come in. Have a seat right over there, right between Fat Mike and Tim Armstrong. Can I get you anything to eat? The Pietasters have brought a lovely apple turnover. No? How about a beverage? Toby, can you pour us all some H2O? Good, good. Listen, Epitaph. This is never easy to say, so I’ll just say it. This is an intervention.

Now listen. The first thing we want you to know is that we all care about you. For better or worse, you’ve been a long-standing pillar of the punk community for over 20 years and, having been founded by a member of Bad Religion, you’ve obviously earned your cred. And you’ve put out some great records over the years that we all own. Punk in Drublic, Let’s Go, Suffer. All classics. No one is debating that. But the thing is, I’ve noticed—we’ve noticed—that lately you’ve been making some bad choices and putting out albums that we wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole. I’m sure Ten Foot Pole agrees with that.

Anyway, Epitaph, like I was saying: Nobody’s perfect. Sure, you’ve put out a couple of stinkers over the years. Remember those Gas Huffer albums in the 90s? Ha! We can all laugh about that now. You were young. We thought you were just experimenting with Gas Huffing. We looked the other way. But the records you’ve been putting out recently have been, well... let’s just take a look, shall we?

Bring Me The Horizon. It doesn’t take a genius to guess that mop-headed 90-pound wusses with throat tattoos are going to make awful music.

Here, see. Look at your current roster. You’ve been signing hardcore boybands likes Bring Me the Horizon, Escape the Fate, and Our Last Night. Epitaph, these bands are terrible. It doesn’t take a genius to guess that mop-headed 90-pound wusses with throat tattoos are gonna make awful music. Why are you marketing your label to 15-year-old girls at Hot Topic all of a sudden? 

Look at this band you’ve got on your roster: Skip The Foreplay. I’ve never even heard them and I can tell they’re terrible. Milo, can you put on a little bit of one of their songs? And what is it called? You’re kidding. The name of the song is “Dinner with Snooki?” Ugh. OK, just play it please. 

Oh my god, what is this? It sounds like some date rape club music. ...No! No, don’t you cover your ears. You listen, Epitaph! Are you happy with this?! Are you happy what you’re doing to the punk scene?! OK, OK, that’s enough. Turn it off. Sorry to have to do that, Epitaph, but it’s the only way you’ll understand the pain you’re causing us. 

Let’s talk about the elephant in the room: Falling In Reverse. Besides the fact that the entire punk scene is laughing about how you just released their last record which is unquestionably the worst album of all time, the band is fronted by a guy who not only looks like a Suicide Girl, but has spit on teenage fans and called them faggots. He’s also been arrested for assaulting his ex-girlfriend. What kind of garbage person hits a woman? Oops. Sorry, Ben Weasel, didn’t see you there. But to top it off, the girl this dickbag assaulted works for you, Epitaph! That would’ve been a good time for you to put your foot down. But you didn’t. You just sat by and did nothing because the guy makes money for you. Is it worth it, Epitaph? Is it?

Falling In Reverse is fronted by a guy who not only looks like a Suicide Girl, but has spit on teenage fans and called them faggots.

But what’s weird, Epitaph, is that aside from these utter turd albums you’ve been shitting out recently, you also continue to put out some phenomenal records. Last year, you were responsible for ridiculously good new albums by Converge and Propagandhi, two of the longest-running, most respected bands around. Do you think they like sharing a label with Falling in Reverse, huh? Do you think an acclaimed band like Off With Their Heads enjoy seeing their names right next to a band called I Set My Friends On Fire? Look at them. Look at what you’re doing to them. Can someone get Off With Their Heads some tissues? 

The only reason these legendary bands are sticking with you is because you’ve got a well-oiled machine over there and they’re too old to be hassled by the bullshit that comes with smaller startup labels. If you weren’t cutting them a sweet paycheck and getting their records widely distributed, they’d walk out on you faster than Guttermouth can get themselves banned from a tour.

Well, I hope this has been a wake up call. If it hasn’t, we’re giving you this ultimatum: Either cut the bullshit and stop catering to the mall rock crowd or we stop buying your albums. Plenty of other labels are putting out good punk records without having to incorporate any unlistenable mall rock bullshit. We hate to do this but you leave us no choice. 

We love you, Epitaph. This is for your own good.


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