Pin It
Favorite

Primal Screams 

Flipping burgers and screaming into microphones doesn’t ever have to get old

click to enlarge Blaine Cook (on mic) does double duty in Toe Tag and Martha’s Revenge.
  • Blaine Cook (on mic) does double duty in Toe Tag and Martha’s Revenge.

It’s just what I like to do. When I was in my early 30s, I was thinking, ‘When am I going to grow up?’ But I dig what I do and it’s not like I’m in a rut.”

That’s 50-year-old Blaine Cook talking. His inhuman voice led innovative hardcore/metal legends, the Accused through the 1980s, parts of the ’90s and the early 2000s. All the while, he balanced his punk rock dervish persona with a day job as a teacher. You could bring him home to mom, and as long as mom never found out what he did on the side, everyone could live happily ever after.

Ahh, lifers. You gotta love ’em. Today Cook conjures the spirit of 100 Arthur Janov primal scream therapy sessions all in the name of his hobby as the frontman of Seattle hardcore thrashers, Toe Tag.

In his post-Accused life, Cook played with the Black Nasty, Denial Fiend and now Toe Tag, all while concurrently owning and operating award-winning Seattle burger spot, Zippy’s Giant Burgers. Toe Tag — which also features members of Midnight Idols and a couple of Cook’s old Accused buddies — still weekend-warrior throughout the Northwest and do at least one California run a year. And, after seven years of existence, Toe Tag has amassed a small handful of releases, including a forthcoming recording they completed with the legendary producer Jack Endino last April. Cook couldn’t stop rocking, even if he tried.

“Playing music now is like it was in the early ’80s because you just do it to do it. There are no expectations; sometimes you play for 10 people, sometimes 100, sometimes more,” he says.

If you were thinking “where’s the burger-flipping biz analogy?” Cook has already got it figured out.

“Having my own restaurant is what it was like playing hardcore in the ’80s,” he says. “There aren’t a lot of places, so if you do a good job, people will appreciate it. But now, in music, there are so many bands and so much going on, it’s hard to stand out.”

At this upcoming Spokane show, Cook will also front Martha’s Revenge: a band that bills itself as the Northwest’s premier Accused tribute band. The name is an homage to the Accused’s iconic mascot, Martha Splatterhead.

For Cook, continuing to play music and be in bands “is a priority and an intricate part of my life,” he says. “We rehearse at my house twice a week, crack open beers, take bong hits and play. It’s like our men’s club.”

Toe Tag and Martha’s Revenge play with Rutah and Autolycus • Sat, Jan. 12 at 9 pm • Mootsy’s • $5 • 21+ • 838-1570

Tags:

  • Pin It

Latest in Music

  • Do the Math
  • Do the Math

    Minus the Bear has accomplished the tough task of making progressive rock accessible
    • Aug 25, 2016
  • More than Labels
  • More than Labels

    Zakk Wylde's second solo record shows off his softer side, but it's just one part of his persona
    • Aug 25, 2016
  • Rage On
  • Rage On

    The newly combined music festival Rage-Apalooza is the Viking's biggest event yet
    • Aug 18, 2016
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri
Minus the Bear, This Will Destroy You

Minus the Bear, This Will Destroy You @ Knitting Factory

Sun., Aug. 28, 8 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Kevin Stewart-Panko

  • Does He or Doesn't He?
  • Does He or Doesn't He?

    It’s hard to know what Tracy Morgan really thinks. And that’s why comedy fans love him
    • Mar 26, 2013
  • Surviving Gwar
  • Surviving Gwar

    Trust us, being doused in (fake) bodily fluids and blasted with metal can be really fun
    • Nov 6, 2012
  • Building Tension
  • Building Tension

    How Spokane got a bad rap with Portland’s Witch Mountain
    • Oct 9, 2012
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Still Celebrating

    Boy George and Culture Club paved the way for genre- and gender-bending rock stars
    • Aug 11, 2016
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Dark Into Light
  • Dark Into Light

    Call of the Void melds brutal metal and murky beauty
    • Feb 18, 2015
  • Fire From the Depths
  • Fire From the Depths

    It took Soblivios two years to finish an album; now they're ready to ravage the world with it
    • Apr 1, 2015

© 2016 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation