Long-silent New York thrash/punk label RATcage Records has resurfaced in Switzerland, and its new first batch of releases includes a rare recording of a 1982 concert featuring a pre-rap Beastie Boys,
Long-silent New York thrash/punk label RATcage Records has resurfaced in Switzerland, and its new first batch of releases includes a rare recording of a 1982 concert featuring a pre-rap Beastie Boys, Reagan Youth, and the Young and the Useless. The albums are available via the label's official Web site and in select stores.
The show, held at New York's famed punk haven CBGB, was the first night of a two-day benefit for RATcage, which had already released the first effort by the fledgling group, the "Polly Wog Stew" EP. At the time -- four years prior to the Beasties' full-length debut "License To Ill" (Def Jam) -- the group included founding members MCA (Adam Yauch) and Mike D (Mike Diamond) as well as guitarist John Berry and future Luscious Jackson drummer Kate Schellenbach. Future Beastie Boy Ad Rock (Adam Horovitz) was playing guitar for another band on the bill, the Young and the Useless. The disc will be dedicated to the respective lead singers of Reagan Youth and the Young and the Useless, Dave Insurgent and David Scilken, both of whom passed away in the early '90s.
RATcage also released the "Cookie Puss" 12" single, the Beastie Boys' first foray into rap, in 1983, but the label called it quits two years later and label head Day-Z Daze moved to New Orleans and then Switzerland. The label has also just released "Punk Blues" and "Little Tramp," two records by Daze, who plays an electric ukulele.
The Beastie Boys are at work on their first album since 1998's "Hello Nasty" (Grand Royal/Capitol) but the set is not expected until next year at the earliest. "Hello Nasty" debuted at No. 1 on The Billboard 200 and has sold 3.8 million copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan.