'Human connection of disconnection'

These Arms Are Snakes grab you, hard

By D'Anne Witkowski

"Angela's Secret" by Seattle band These Arms Are Snakes is exactly what Barbara Ehrenreich's book 'Nickel and Dimed' would sound like if it were a hardcore punk rock song. Both highlight the struggle of a single mother barely getting by: "When I eat it's with my kids and if I dance it's when they're asleep. When I shop it's not for me and neither is when I breathe," vocalist Steve Snere snarls before launching into the screaming chorus of "some ain't got no luck."

The other ten songs aren't much brighter. And no wonder. Snere began writing the lyrics for the songs that would become the band's first full-length release as part of a short story while he was working at a check cashing service in Seattle.

The result is "Oxeneers or The Lion Sleeps When Its Antelope Go Home" (Jade Tree Records), a collection of songs culled from the underbelly of life that reflect a disillusioned view of our greed-based culture. Songs about working too much, getting screwed over, and getting drunk or lost in the city to try to forget it all, at least until Monday at 9 a.m.

"So use your body as the engine for your weekend because this is no time to sleep," Snere demands on "Big News," "I'm sick of working all the time for someone else's needs."

With a band name like These Arms Are Snakes you better be tough, lest you come across like a group of B-grade horror movie geeks. Not only are they hardcore, they've got an openly gay member, bassist Brian Cook, proving once again that being gay doesn't mean being fey, and gay musical tastes aren't limited to show tunes and Streisand.

TAAS makes music that is challenging, confrontational, and difficult. Loud guitars, screaming vocals, and a palpable sense of anger and hurt are TAAS hallmarks. They've been called everything from emo to punk to screamo to hardcore. But it doesn't matter what we call them, because they're calling us and the social trappings of our lives to the floor and taking us to task. May we live better for it.

See These Arms Are Snakes live at the Magic Stick in Detroit Saturday, Nov. 27. For more information visit www.majesticdetroit.com/stick.asp and www.thesearmsaresnakes.com.

More News

MI Marriage Trial

Michigan Same Sex Couples Demand Respect And Equal Treatment

Michigan Leaders React To Feds Recognition Of Marriages

MI Marriage: Schuette Asks For Full Appeals Court Review

The Stay Delayed Allows 315 Couples To Wed In State

Gay Marriage Defines Schuette's Reelection Campaign

Snyder Says Schuette Going Against Trend

Sixth Circuit Continues Stay

Michigan Marriage Ban Struck Down

Michigan Makes History With First Marriages

Elected Officials, Advocates Petition Schuette To Drop Marriage Aappeal

Pictures from Ingham County - Getting Married

Pictures from Oakland County Clerk's Office - Part 1

Pictures from the Oakland County Clerk's office - Part 2

Pictures from the Oakland County Clerk's Office - Part 3

Pictures from Washtenaw County

White Nationalist Group Files Brief Supporting AG's Appeal In Marriage Ruling

Discredited Witness Part Of Right-Wing Cabal

Schauer Celebrates Overturn Of Michigan Marriage Ban

Equality Michigan Circulating Petition to Drop Appeal

Why Are Governor Rick Snyder and Attorney General Bill Schuette Wasting Michigan Taxpayer Dollars On A Costly Appeal?

Michigan Marriage Ban Co-Author Goes 'Moral'

BTL's Wedding Expo: Like Pride in April

Snyder Says Marriages Invalid

Elected Officials, Advocates Petition Schuette To Drop Marriage Appeal

Request To Remove Stay Based On Process And Substance

Schuette Lies To Satisfy Political Base

DOCUMENTS: The decision, the stay, and more

BREAKING: Holder Asked To Recognize Michigan Marriages

Michigan Marriage Ban Ruled Unconstitutional

BREAKING: Sixth Circuit Court Of Appeals Issues Temporary Stay On Michigan Case

BREAKING: Same-Sex Couples Across Michigan Get Hitched

BREAKING: Judge Friedman Declares Michigan's Same-Sex Marriage Ban Unconstitutional

Judge Could Rule Late Today In Mich. Marriage Ban

Michigan Marriage Trial: And Now We Wait

Editor's Viewpoint: Our Long Journey To Justice

Federal Marriage Case Decisions Outside Michigan In Circuit Court of Appeals

Peers Distance Themselves As Regnerus Takes The Stand

Marriage Supporters, Protestors Brave Cold At Courthouse

Highlights From Michigan Same-Sex Marriage Hearing

Brown Says Schuette Instructed Clerks To Defy Court

Michigan Marriage Equality Trial Begins Second Week

Marriage Equality Trial Opens : Science v. Fear

Michigan Marriage Center Prepares State For The Possibility!

Michigan Marriage Case Begins

A Trial Full of Experts: Incredible and Not So Credible, In Hazel Park Case

like us on facebook follow us on twitter follow us on google+