Youth Brigade live at the El Rey Theater

Los Angeles punk rock vets rip up stage in blistering set. Photo: Dr. Jimmy Herlofsky

LOS ANGELES, February 20, 2013 — When looking for a band to support their U.S. tour, The Cockney Rejects could not have chosen any better than Youth Brigade. The Brothers Stern provided a powerful supporting act to the Brothers Geggus as they ripped through their 16 song set at the El Rey Theater in Los Angeles on Monday night. Filling out the bill for the evening were Union 13 and The Warlords

Usually a headliner these days, Youth Brigade opened their set with “Where Are the Old Man Bars,” from their 1999 BYO split with Swingin’ Utters, and they just kept ripping all night. The fans responded well to these Los Angeles natives in the usual punk rock way, a furious circle pit and loud singing along.

Youth Brigade in action. (Credit: Adam Ruseling)

Youth Brigade was formed by three brothers, Adam, Mark and Shawn, in Los Angeles in the summer of 1980. Launching a band wasn’t enough for the brothers. So, in keeping with their DIY punk rock work ethic, they started their own record label, BYO, which at times has outshone the band. BYO has released albums from many epic punk bands including 7 Seconds, The Unseen, SNFU, as well as a split series and various compilations.

Youth Brigade has gone through numerous changes throughout the years. Monday night’s lineup consisted of Shawn Stern on guitar and vocals, Mark Stern on drums, Mike Carter on guitar, and Mike Hale on bass. Sorry Adam Stern fans. Adam was indeed in attendance. But only as a spectator.

Photo credit: Adam Ruseling.

Many classics were during the band’s Monday night set, ranging from old school classics like “Modest Proposal” and “Blown Away,” to “Fight to Unite” and “Men In Blue,” to some newer classics such as, “I Hate My Life” and the aforementioned “Where Are the Old Man Bars.” It’s hard to name just a few of the classics this band performed, as their set was loaded from start to finish with a song that each and every single person in attendance knew and loved.

Youth Brigade ended their appearance with one of their best sing along tunes, “Sink with California.” The band sounded awesome in their finale, which was a fitting conclusion since they basically killed it all night.

Youth Brigade has been accompanying The Cockney Rejects on their current U.S. tour, which started on Valentine’s Day in Reno, Nevada and continues Feb. 20 in Denver. From there, the tour stops in Chicago, Brooklyn and Boston before concluding its journey at Otto Bar in Baltimore, MD.

Youth Brigade, photo by Dr. Jimmy Herlofsky.

If you haven’t seen Youth Brigade or The Cockney Rejects, you really need to check out one of these shows. That said, even if you have seen both bands, you still really need to check out one of these shows.



Kevin J. Wells writes about Major League Baseball and punk rock music.  Follow him on Twitter @WellsOnBaseball



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Kevin Wells

Kevin J. Wells was born and raised in the Los Angeles area in a town called Montrose.  He currently plays guitar for and is a founding member of the Los Angeles punk rock band Emmer Effer.  He has worked in a number of different career fields including Behavioral Therapy, Commodities, Insurance, and most recently a food cart in Portland, OR.


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