Michael's Uncle

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Hailed by many as the pioneers of Hardcore in Czechoslovakia, Michael's Uncle sure dived early in the genre while immediately proposing a conception of it that stretched farther than its British and American…
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Hailed by many as the pioneers of Hardcore in Czechoslovakia, Michael's Uncle sure dived early in the genre while immediately proposing a conception of it that stretched farther than its British and American counterparts. The group often used complex song structures calling for a certain level of virtuosity, putting them closer to Cleveland proto-punk outfits like the Electric Eels. The lyrics are woven with political, social, and anarchic messages (The End of Dark Psychedelia opens with the "International").

Michael's Uncle, which also went some times by the names Majkluv Strycek (the strict Czech equivalent) and M.O., took form in Prague in 1987. The country still lived under the Communist rule, making a subversive outfit like this one automatically underground and illegal. The first line-up included singer Amrit Sen, guitarist Petr Stanko, bassist Ivan Klain, drummer Jaroslav "Jarda" Stuchly, and a second guitarist Karel Jancák who would leave before the group's first studio album. They barely took the time to write themselves a repertoire before hitting the stage. Already in December 1987 the group was in full force and a concert at the Opatov Club got recorded and released on cassette in 1990 as Live 1987 (reissued in 2001 together with The End of Dark Psychedelia). Svine ("Swine") came out as a samizdat cassette a few weeks before the Velvet Revolution of November 1989. The group reached its peak on The End of Dark Psychedelia (RAT, 1990), a tortured LP that illustrates a generation freed from the oppressor but not from the accumulated anger. The label Black Point reissued Svine on CD in 1992, but the group released the 1995 Ale my stale hledame stesti, ale nikdo z nas jeste neni mrtev on Indies. It seems to be the group's final recorded effort and marks the departure of Sen -- Stanko takes over vocal duties. Michael's Uncle continued to perform sporadically for a few more years.