Oi! American Oi! : The Effigiesy

The Effigies

The Effigies were one of the first American streetpunk bands and among the first to play by no one's rules. When a lot of ands were more concerned with politics and image, the Effigies were busy singing about real life. There was no political proselytizing or preaching to the converted; no "I'm more punk than you" attitude. The effigies played uprban no-nonsense working class music. I stress that word because the Effigies were not about "I've got something to say while these guys behind me play musical instruments"...no, these boys from the Midwest were "We've got something to say and we're going to say it through punk rock music". Melodic and dischordant at the same time, the Effigies broke all the rules that shouldn't have been made in the first place.

The band began in early 1980 with Steve Economou on drums, Earl Letiecq playing guitar, Paul Zamost on bass and the angry, eloquent John Kezdy on vocals. This classic lineup put out some of the best streetpunk ever, definitely the best from early '80s America. Forget Southern California's police state for a minute...forget NYHC right now. The Effigies played some fucking great music and it's a damn shame that there are a quite a few kids nowadays who have never heard of them, let alone listened to their music. Although the band split in '86, reformed in '87, and split again in 1990 (all with various lineup changes), the original Effigies came back together in 1992 to play to a packed audience at the last show ever at Chicago's infamous Exit club and to the delight of many, have even played again in 1995 and '96.

The band has re-released most of their early material on the Remains Nonviewable CD on Touch & Go Records. Check around your local stores or even try some of the Internet music stores. I highly advise getting your hands on this piece of punk rock history. Through the past two decades, the Effigies played punk the way it shoud be played: without rules, honest, and from the heart.


  • Haunted Town E.P. on Autumn Records, 1981
  • "Bodybag" b/w "Security" 7" on Ruthless Records, 1982
  • We're Da Machine E.P. on Ruthless Records,1983
  • For Ever Grounded L.P. on Ruthless Records, 1984
  • Haunted Town rerelease E.P. on Ruthless Records label, 1984
  • Fly On A Wire L.P. on Fever Records, 1985
  • Ink L.P. on Fever Records, 1986
  • Remains Nonviewable retrospect L.P. on Roadkill, 1989
  • Remains Nonviewable re-released on C.D. on Touch & Go Records, 1995
  • V.M.L. Live Presents the Effigies 12/16/95 E.P., 1996
  • Compilations
  • Busted at Oz on Autumn Records, 1981
  • Middle of America Compilation on H.I.D., 1984
  • The Enigma Variations L.P./CD on Enigma, 1985
  • Check out the Official Effigies Homepage.
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