Watch Out For: Zombie Nation

For a while, earlier in the season, the Boston Bruins were amazing. Scoring was frequent and widely spread among the team (six of whom ended up with 20+ goals). And after every one of the team’s 131 goals at TD Garden this season, the song above played.

It is a remix of “Kernkraft 400” by Zombie Nation, although everyone just calls the song “Zombie Nation” because people are idiots. It’s from a genre of music known as “awful”, but folks who are nuts for categorization can file it under “techno music for people who positively demand a hangover tomorrow.”

And it’s an awful choice for a city that actually has decent music. Follow me past the jump and let’s peruse.

Just for the record, Zombie Nation is a German group. According to the nameless scribes at wikipedia, the main melody– sawtoothed to hell and back– is lifted from a Commodore 64 game I never played. It’s totally jock jam’d out, and it has got nothing to do with Boston, hockey, or any human experience I recognize.

So just as DC gets awesomer when its arenas play Minor Threat, Trouble Funk, or even Mary Chapin Carpenter, Boston would be wise to consult  these touchstones.

Aerosmith. One of America’s best rock bands and prolific across three decades (only totally wasted for 1.5 of them), Aerosmith is ubiquitous and hard to hate. They put on a pretty great live show (sorry, kids, you missed your chance), and they knew how to write a song . It’s sad that their biggest hit– the one from that asteroid movie– was written by Dianne Warren and not them.

Appropriate usage: There is no bad time to play Aerosmith during a hockey game except maybe the national anthem. Maybe.

Converge. One of the most respected bands in the metalcore scene in and beyond Massachusetts, Converge is a holdout from a bygone era. They’ve got no ornamentation; it’s all riffs dark and rich, with lyrics growled instead of sung. Their seething disgust for the state of the world is present and genuine, so the listening experience is innervating: it’s more about winding up than spooling down.

Appropriate usage: Fight music.

New Edition. Pop impresario Maurice Starr began his ascent to global-scale creepiness by fabricating this blatant Jackson 5 ripoff group back in the early 80s. As the voices of Bobby Brown and company dropped, the group grew unruly and Maurice had to scrape the bottom of southtown’s barrel until he found the New Kids on the Block, which was a crime against ears. (Although Donnie still rules.)

Appropriate usage: Good for introducing the visitors or the dreaded Kiss Cam.

The Dresden Dolls. Amanda Palmer’s duo is a sort of punk-rock/cabaret thing. They operate in a world of enhanced reality, which is way too provocative for and contrary to the fluorescent world of TD Garden. Still, your life is made better by letting Mrs. Neil Gaiman in. And if you can meet a girl or boy who is into Dresden Dolls, that is usually a girl or boy worth knowing.

Appropriate usage: No practical applications for hockey.

The Mighty Mighty Bosstones. Although ska was only really popular for like a half a month in 1997, I consider Dicky Barrett’s band apart from the fad. Plus, they’re eminently Boston. They’re stocked with pale white boys and people of color alike. They sing about girls and getting job, but also Sinatra and AIDS. They’re vehemently anti-hate– which was pretty bold stand considering some of the racist oi! bands that were in their peer group back in the early 80s. And their live shows were crazy intense– it was like a slam dance master class in the pit.

Appropriate usage: Ideal hockey music, and their cover of KISS’s “Detroit Rock City” is totally boss.

There are a million more great bands from Boston (which I’m sure you’re litanize in the comments), and each one makes “Kernkraft 400” more awful as a goal song, but at least it’s not “Chelsea Dagger.”

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  • Guestz

    helz yeah Bosstones!  i think one of the best intro songs for a team to come out to, or to start off before the puck drop, that i can think of is the opening to Kinder Words from Question the Answers (seen here:

    As for the game, I’m hoping that Rags game wasn’t a fluke, and the our goal-scoring-shenanigans continue.

  • Jeremiah

    no mention of  Foo Fighters from DC, Dave Grohl is from here and recorded most of their albums here. as far as Zombie Nation is concerned for a goal song it couldn’t be any worse than that aawful Rock the Red goal song contest winner from elliot in the morning a couple years ago. that song took the energy out of everything and sounded like it was done in twenty minutes and was cut and pasted together. i remember seeing aerosmith at the caps center a long time ago  which makes me sound older than i am 

  • Scott

     Dropkick Murphys, Rob Zombie, NOFX(though they are know more west coast).  Hell Id rather listen to Marky Mark than Zombie Nation.

  • Converge is definitely awesome fight music. I like that every now and then I hear the double-bass pedals but usually the crowd is too loud to hear the song 🙁

  • Brandon

    As much as I love Maiden, one could question the Caps choice of goal song on those grounds as well.

  • Al

    …slapshot, the bruisers, gang green, mission of burma, jerry’s kids, the f.u.’s, the freeze…

  • Peter

    I love FF. They recorded one album– 99’s TNLTL– here.

    I’m a musician and I’m still kicking myself over not making a record for that EITM contest.

  • Peter

    I didn’t even know NOFX had Boston roots. I always thought of them as SF bay area. Ditto with Zombie.

  • Peter

    All good choices, especially Burma, but I had to cut some out for space. Had to fit New Edition in there somehow!

  • Peter

    Whoops. The wikipedias tell me that One by One was recorded in Virginia too, but I block that one out of my memory because I hate it.

  • GovtMinion

     Fat Mike of NOFX was born in MA, but grew up in SoCal. That’s about as ‘Boston’ as NOFX really is.

    Now, Dropkick Murphys, how THEY didn’t get in here is beyond me. If they didn’t scream ‘Boston’ enough in their setup, or in that they played at the Winter Classic in Boston, or parade with the Bruins last summer after the Cup run… they’ve done songs ABOUT the B’s as well (Time To Go).

  • Jim

    Not sure how Dropkick misses the list since they actually have a song about going to bruins games.

  • Ryanpstern86

    CONVERGE!!!  why can’t Verizon have anything cool like that! 

  • PuckBuddyDoug

    As much as the Dresden Dolls swing, when we think Boston, we think tools bouncing around to House of Pain, dribbling Sam Adams down their shirts. 

  • Peter

    Dropkick “misses” the list only because it didn’t need to be 04812741824 words long.

  • Buffalo Tom, my favorite Boston band, would sound great at a Caps game.

  • Unrelated… I really miss the CAPS’ old game intro.  Foo Fighters The Pretender

  • Peter

    Great song. “John McEnroe / slapping the ho” couplet should be in the library of congress

  • rmontcal

    Any song by Tree, especially this one:

  • Neverwhere

    A Neil Gaiman reference in RMNB! My day is made 🙂

  • Welshdave85

    Oi! isn’t a racist genre of music, you’re thinking of R.A.C. , totally different things.

  • Peter

    I didn’t say Oi! was racist, and I agree that it definitely was not.

    I said there were some racist bands in the Oi! scene. That’s fair, right? Skrewdriver were in a subset of Oi!, even if everyone else hated them for it.I appreciate the feedback though.

  • Welshdave85

     The 1st Skrewdriver  album is Oi!, but after that the singer came out as a racist and the rest of the band quit. After that they became an R.A.C.(Rock Against Communism) band.
    Even if 2 bands sound the same, the second they have racist lyrics they are no longer Oi!, but instead R.A.C.
    It might seem silly, but lyrical themes can sometimes be the only difference between certain sub genres of punk rock.
    In this instance you can think of it as the scene policing itself because Oi! is one of the main styles of music that Traditional Skinheads(ones that are non-racist and non-fascist) listen to, so they want to make sure to separate themselves from Nazis since a large part of the public thinks Skinhead = Nazi.
    Sorry for the long response, I just didn’t want Oi! to get a bad rap.

  • Peter

    Thank you for the response. I’m 100% on board with all of that, and I appreciate it.

  • Guestz

    Start this at 44″ and tell me this wouldn’t be the best goal scoring music possible

  • Welshdave85

     Since my only responses to this article may have sounded critical, I also wanted to say that I still enjoyed it and this is one of the few website I read daily!

  • Al

    i know im slow poking here but dave brockie of gwar is a huge skins fan ive met him and he’s impartial to the caps