The Dark! These guys (youths) were unbelievable. Ages from 13 to 15 years old, but man how they could play. The guitarist could unleash notes with the speed of a machine gun when he felt like it. However, at least in the beginning, he would downplay this in favor of the power chords. I only heard him pull off these monster riffs when he would blow a note, get pissed and add this rapid fire stuff in. We used to actually yell at them to put more lead in their songs. Mike Hudson knew them and had taken them under his wing. They got a gig set up at a Kent warehouse type party and Mike and I drove them to it.
We loaded up the two cars and headed south. Mike and I began racing each other, down those dark country roads, passing each other on the left in the face of oncoming vehicles and also at times on the right shoulder. A cop coming the other way witnesses a bit of our actions and turns around to begin his pursuit. I ditched it off on a side street and pulled in behind a building and hid for a bit. Hudson wasn't as lucky.
The cop pulled him over and asked, "Where's the other car?" Mike denied knowing who the other car was or what the hell they were doing driving like that. Then the cop asked Mike, "You been drinking?" He replied, "I had a drink with dinner, sir". I guess if a bottle of wine is a "drink" and a half pack of smokes is "dinner" then Mike was telling the truth.
The cop looked deeper into the car and sees all these young kids in leather jackets and chopped hair and who knows what else and asks Hudson, "What is with you guys?" Hudson replies, "We're a band". The cop wants to know, "WHAT KIND OF BAND." Mike tells him, "PUNK ROCK!". The cop just told him to get out of here.
Anyhow, we finally make it to the gig with the band in check. Another hassle takes place as the doorman is trying to make us (including the band) pay to get in. Hudson negotiates with him in that Hudson manner and things get worked out. Inside there is a good crowd. The space is dark and maze like. The Dark play about twenty minutes and are as great and throbbing as usual. After that we all just looked at each other and it was like "Go?" "Yep" and so we split. We took the 40 mile drive back a little slower.
When The Dissidents first starting playing out, we were inexperienced to say the least. We always took refuge in the fact that we were only 16-17 year olds. "How good do you expect us to be? We're just kids!" One night at Tucky's that all changed. I believe it was a benefit for the Cleveland Confidential album. We went down to the show. It was the first time we had seen the Dark. We were blown away! Tommy Dark and Robert Griffin were our age, Scott (bass) was only 13 and Dave (drums) was only 14. They were great! Good songs, tight arrangements, and loads of energy. That night the Dark inadvertently pushed us to be a better band, and over a period of time we became one. The "we're just kids" excuse no longer worked.