It hasn't been a great year for punk rock's old guard. Sure, the deaths have been few but they've been monumental. First, in July, we lost Tommy Ramone, the last of the original (and for purists, the last of the real) Ramones. And now we have to say goodbye to Brian Goble, better known to fans as "Wimpy," the bassist and frontman of the Subhumans (the Canadian punk band, not the British one). Goble died on Sunday after suffering a heart attack. Though he's best known for his time heading the Subhumans, Goble was also instrumental in fostering a number of Vancouver's major punk bands, such as Stone Crazy and D.O.A. and so in kicking off the better part of an entire country's punk rock movement.
It's a death that will probably go unremarked by the rest of the music world -- the Subhumans weren't exactly what you'd call chart toppers and even now they're often not given their due -- but the fact is those of us with a love of punk should stop and take notice, maybe even pour one out. Our heroes aren't getting any younger and when that slice of music history is gone, it's gone for good (and who's going to remember this when it's done if not us stalwarts?).
Spotify's got the reissue of Incorrect Thoughts (here known as Same Thoughts, Different Day) up for listening, so if you enjoy some late '70s punk as much as I do go ahead and listen. And if you don't here's the chance to jump on (and if you like it, can I recommend The Adolescents, The Descendents and, if you're feeling ESPECIALLY brave, The Angry Samoans?)