Sunday, January 15, 2006

False Prophets: self-titled LB

1986, Alternative Tentacles

I remember this band around the timing of this release as having one of the more exciting and theatrical frontmen in the genre and I suppose like many bands of that era, I'm more excited that I saw them live than whether I have their records. But as records go, this one was pretty decent.

False Prophets (1979-1993) were a left-wing protest / militant band, contemporaries of Reagan Youth and Beefeater/Fidelity Jonesand all three of these band collectives feature an outrageous frontman. There were also of the few East Coasters signed to Jello Biafra's label at the time. Live, Stephan Ielpi would goosestep around the stage, scarily get into everyone's faces and generally try to make you feel uncomfortable about politics whether or not you shared his. His between-song harangues suggested what it might be like at a Communist party meeting in a Cambodian mental hospital. Their band name basically was a refutation of the notion of following a band, declaring up front that they were just False Prophets like all the rest.

I remember coming late to the show (in Baltimore, I think) while they were setting up (this was in the mid-80s) and the kids (back then "kids" were junior high kids not college indie preps) were sitting outside smoking cigarettes and mumbling about "synthshit" but later on when the band had warmed up they were up front doing their little tribal dance. I saw them later on (at the Fidelity Jones debut show), the band had improved and frontman Stephan Ielpi had gotten even more strident and less enjoyable - their show seemed more like a lecture with songs thrown in than a concert with engaging between-song words.

While operating as a 2nd generation hardcore-thrash band (later an anti-metalcore stance was pretty evident), False Prophets rarely stayed within the conventions and aesthetics of the form utilizing synths (!) sometimes doubling up piano and organ and showing a reverence for Alice Cooper and 60's British Invasion (The Kinks). Still, they took more cues from classic punk like the Pistols, Clash, Black Flag and Dead Kennedys. About a third to half of the songs here are classic hardcore. The better hardcore songs on this record are available for download at Alternative Tentacles, this album having been reissued in 2000 with some of their earlier singles. "Taxidermist" was about the most original "thrash" song to appear on ROIR's NY Thrash compilation in the 80's featuring non-ironic slow rawk chorus and a shimmery Queenish piano arpeggio in the bridge. The dumbest cut is "Suburbanites Invade," a reggae-Clash-ish rant (replete with reggae cliches like rants about Bobbylon) about, well, the suspicious, complaining suburbanites and how they should "and live in your own Hell" - I'm thinking there's goes half the door at most punk shows but it would make city life so much more enjoyable what with the petty criminals now preying on the dwellers exclusively.

"Seven Deadly Sins," the dramatic opener - Ielpi sounds like Rollins would later sound opening up with a dramatic primal sermon and then the band exploding into razor-sharp thrash. They had a tendency to go over the top but in these songs they sort of skim the glass edge. "Functional" is another standout and one of the few thrash genre songs with organ in it (besides Great Plains, ha ha)

Suffice to say, there's a lot of offbeat stuff here. The goofiest cut is "Marat/Sade" which is a cover of what sounds like a Broadway number (it's actually from a movie about Jean Marat and Marquis de Sade) which seems to defend Jacobin Jean Marat's murderous excesses during the French Revolution. Ooohkay. The band's version is well-arranged, sort of what a punk band covering Les Miserables might sound like and like most of this record well-recorded - it's goofy as hell but also audacious and brave.

"Faith', the closing cut and a more traditional rock-punk song, is my favorite with it's skankin' tribal drums and bass, double guitar attack and piano embellishments.

Not a bad record to have around, mostly well recorded and mixed (although at times, such as in "Helplessly Screaming" the bass was turned up too loud) -- yes, there are some clunkers mostly on the first side and some cuts where the band (principally the drummer) overreached, although not exactly essential as the follow-up, Implosion (which was released a year later).


  • Alternative Tentacles False Prophets band site has a band history written by co-founder and bassist Steve Wishnia, a picture of Stephan Ielpi in his prime and four superb MP3s from the reissue of this record Blind Roaches & Fat Vultures. Here's Punknews' review of that reissue.
  • The band reunited for the 2002 NY Thrash Compilation 20th Anniversary - pictures here
  • Coincidentally, many of the members of False Prophets have become authors:
    • Guitarist/Keyboardist and backup vocalist Debra DeSalvo is making her own music with her own band and has written a book called Language of the Blues
    • Steve Wishnia is senior editor at High Times, often pops up on Alternet and Indymedia and has written Cannibas Companion which is also available at Ripoff Press.
    • George Tabb has been writing for Maximum Rock and Roll for like forever and has several books which can be ordered via his website.
    • Guitarist Steven Taylor joined the False Prophets after this record was made but wrote a memoir and diatribe entitled False Prophet: Fieldnotes from the Punk Underground about his experience describing the breakup. I've read most of it online at Amazon via their "Search Inside" feature.
  • Last year, Stephan Ielpi reported that he is in San Francisco working on a poltical music project with "Mike" from Faith No More - not sure who that is since there was more than one Mike in FNM.
  • Drummer Ned Brewster and guitarist-founder Peter Campbell whereabouts unknown


Eric XXL said...

Steven Wishnia left this comment when I asked if Implosion would ever be reissued:

Glad you liked the band, yes, we were far too varied to fit the hardcore scene. Unfortunately, it's unlikely that Implosion will ever be reissued. I wrote most of the music on it--I was the band's bass player--but the producer was an arrogant asshole. I hate what he did to it, but I don't think AT or anyone is going to pay me to remix it, which is the only thing that would make it palatable.
I'm still playing, my main current project is doing the live soundtrack to artist Seth Tobocman's slide show.

I was very disappointed to discover the AT reish didn't include Implosion as I had assumed when I ordered it.

Jim H said...

That's too bad but he has has a damn fine point - in Implosion the songs were better but I prefer the production on this record. It seems they pretty much let the band do what they wanted yet still made sure it was recorded well (with my few meager criticisms about the bass mix in a few songs). Most of the songs on this first record are attributed to Ielpi, Wishner and Campbell (the co-founders).

Jamie said...

The version of Marat/Sade this is derived from would be Judy Collins' 1966 take - in the play and movie, each section of the tune was scattered throughout the story.

Anonymous said...

I just read that Steve Wishnia works for High Times. It made me laugh out loud. I remember meeting him in 1987 and thinking to myself, "Wow, what a nice guy for a hippy burnout."

I've really been feeling the lyrics of "Suburbanites Invade" lately. Suddenly they all want to live downtown in lofts, which is great, but they want to bring their cars along, too, which is not so great.

Debra said...

I really enjoyed reading your article on the FPs...thanks!! I played guitar in False Prophets for many years and loved the band very much.

I hate to do this, but I must take issue with Steve Wishnia's comments. He is a wonderful songwriter, but he did not write "most of the music on" Implosion. He did write some excellent songs for that album that were completed before George Tabb and I joined the band, namely Personal Demons, Genetic Engineering, I Am Your Underside and Decade of Decay.
I assume Steve wrote them because he told me he did, however it's possible that earlier FP guitarist Peter Campbell contributed to them. Vocalist Stephan Ielpi may have also had a hand in them. Although he did not play an instrument, Stephan was very musical and dictated many melodic and rhythmic ideas that we turned into songs over the years. His songwriting contributions went far beyond "lyricist."
On the Implosion album George Tabb wrote the music for Big Bad Western; Stephan and I wrote Eggshell Walk together on piano one night; I wrote most of the music for Destructive Engagement; and Fabulous Day, Implosion and Who Will Be The One were developed by all of us together in rehearsals.
The FPs were highly collaborative, which is why we have never listed separate songwriters on the album covers or ever previously discussed who wrote what publicly. I'm only breaking that practice now to set the record straight.
I also feel people should know that the only thing that prevented Implosion from being included on the AT reissue was Steve Wishnia's refusal to sign off on it. Every other member of the band agreed to include Implosion but since we operate as a collective, Steve was able to veto. I think it's a shame, as Implosion is a damn good album and the "arrogant asshole" Steve describes was legendary producer Giorgio Gomelsky, who imho did a fantastic job and provided the band with an extraordinary creative experience in the studio. Steve and Giorgio did not get along, however, and that seems to have colored Steve's appreciation for the album. Frankly, the only person who thinks Steve should remix that album is Steve.
I hear regularly from FP fans who love Impolosion and want it on CD. I hope Steve will put his distaste for Giorgio and the mix aside one day and allow us and AT to release it in digital format so people can enjoy it.
Btw, I'm not sure what Peter Campbell is doing these days (great guy!!) but Ned Brewster can be found working with his brother Matt at 30th Street Guitars in NYC.

Anonymous said...

I don’t want to start a flame war on your site, but I’ve gotta defend myself when people tell lies about me.

Debra’s lying. And she’s lying because she’s trying to rip off credit for my music.

She says she cowrote the song "Implosion." That would require amazing powers of mental telepathy, since we were doing that song live several months before we even met her. In fact, one of the tracks we considered for the Alternative Tentacles anthology (Blind Roaches and Fat Vultures) was a version of it recorded live in Athens, Georgia in July 1985—around two months before Debra auditioned for the band. If you own the Implosion album, check the label—the guitarist credited with cowriting that song is Peter Campbell, who quit the band in August 1985.

She’s also lying when she says she wrote most of the music for "Destructive Engagement." I wrote the verse and chorus and brought that basic song structure in to the band. (Actually, if anyone other than me deserves credit for "Destructive Engagement," it’s the Dead Kennedys and Johnny Thunders, not Debra—the chromatic-scale bassline hook on the verses was inspired by "Holiday in Cambodia," and the chorus by "Chatterbox.") "Who’ll Be the One" and "Fabulous Day" were developed collectively—also after I brought in the verse, chorus, and basic structure. I wrote "Who’ll Be the One" before she joined the band; I’d just gotten a digital delay pedal, so it was based on a repeating-echo bassline. The reason Peter didn’t get credit for it is because we hadn’t finished the song when he quit.

Yes, the False Prophets wrote songs collectively and listed credit collectively. We argued enough without having to fight over who wrote what percentage of what. We also wanted the credit to reflect a songwriting process in which I might bring in a verse and a chorus; Peter might tell me to find a different riff for the verse and say the song needed a bridge; Stephan might suggest slowing it down in the middle; and Ned or Matt or Donna or Patrick (our drummers) might come up with a distinctive beat. For example, I wrote the verse, chorus, and basic structure of "Genetic Engineering" by going down to our rehearsal space one morning and plugging my guitar into Jesse Malin’s Marshall stack; Peter insisted that it needed a bridge.

We did this because we wanted to be unselfish. Debra’s taking advantage of that to try to deny me credit for my work and claim it for herself. She’s lying.

Making Implosion was the worst experience of my life. Giorgio Gomelsky may be a legend, but he was an absolute prick to work with. He treated me like shit through the whole sessions. I’ve talked to several other musicians who recorded with him, and they all said he did the same thing with them that he did with us: play divide and conquer with bands, pick one member as a protégé and another as scapegoat. You can probably guess who got to be who in the False Prophets.

I tried listening to the album again around six years ago, when we were starting work on the AT reissue, and I barely made it through side one. The songs are good, but the production is a disaster.

The other reason why Implosion will probably never come out again: As I’ve gotten older, I’ve done a pretty good job of keeping assholes—destructive and dishonest people, thieves and abusers—out of my life (well, except for certain employers, but that’s the fate of the worker in 21st-century America). I don’t need to be around people who spew more lies than the Bush administration.

And I haven’t gotten into the financial issues, but she also ripped me off for a bunch of money.

So if you want a good False Prophets album, get Blind Roaches and Fat Vultures. That’s what the band was supposed to sound like.

Anonymous said...

On a more positive note:
In listing books written by former False Prophets, you missed the most relevant one: Exit 25 Utopia, my collection of short stories, published in 2000 by The Imaginary Press. It's available at AK Press, Powell's Books, and Amazon.

We produced the first album ourselves; it was already finished when we got the deal w/AT. I agree with you that "Faith" is the best cut. It's the one where the music blossomed into something more than what we'd been doing already.

The bass is up loud on "Helplessly Screaming" because that's the way the song was written. It's heavily influenced by PiL (the bassline grew out of me learning "Albatross" and a Manu Dibango song called "Nights in Zeraida"). I'm basically doing Jah Wobble & Peter's doing Keith Levene. "Personal Demons" on Implosion was supposed to have a similar dub-like feel.

The line about "Babylon" on "Suburbanites" is a joke--there's a suburb of NYC called Babylon. The song's not intended as a putdown of the kids who come in from Babylon, Bergenfield, or Bay Ridge to find something they're not getting out in mall-land--many of us were there once. (As our roadie Geneva UnKonventional once said, "there are no poseurs, only ambitious beginners.") It's aimed at the people who come in and want all the homeless and poor locked up because they're "unsightly." I've been feeling it a lot lately, as all the cool places in the city get pushed out by yuppie bars and chain stores.

Anonymous said...

I spent a lot of time hanging out with the False Prophets; my band Expletive Deleted opened for them on many occassions. Both Ned and George played in the band after they left the FPs. I remember when they were working on Implosion and the complaints many of the band members had with Giorgio. That experience and the tour that followed led to many members quitting the band.

At their best--and I saw them with Peter and with George & Debra--they were one of the finest bands to see on the hardcore scene, in part because of their tongue-in-cheek sensibility and the way they transcended the notion of hardcore. I look back fondly on those days, and I wish them all well.

DebD said...

I never ripped off Steve Wishnia for any money whatsoever and I am not a liar. I think most readers can ascertain by the level of bile in his post that something is not quite right about what he has to say.
I would love for Steve to put aside his dissatisfaction with the production and allow Implosion to be released on CD for people to enjoy. It's frustrating for the rest of us in the band to not have our complete works available because one person has chosen to be a bit of a pill.
Just to end this little war, I'm not going to respond further. I wish Steve the best in all his endeavors and maybe one of these days he'll soften his position, for the benefit of all.

Anonymous said...

I saw the False Prophets open for the Dead Kennedys 9/21/06 at CBGB.
I had seen them at the Thrash reunion 4 years prior; they were great then, while this was more intense. It was the original lineup of Peter, Steve and Stephan, plus a new drummer and bassist. Stephan was hilarious and entertaining; the band blew the Dead Kennedys and their fans away, making the club theirs. I liked how Stephan paid homage to the punk spirits in the set, while waxing poetic about the gentrification of NYC in "Suburbanites Invade". The sound, as it always is in CBGB, was loud, but strong.
The False Prophets was one of the first NYC hardcore bands, being punk on verge of hardcore, always with great songs. At times they would sound like the Grateful Dead on speed. "Taxidermist" is still one of my favorites.
They always had this Goth thing that was pretty cool.
Anyone else here see the 9/21 show?

Anonymous said...

I gotta side with Debbie here.

And I think Georgio was WONDERFUL to work with. Truth is, Steve can't stand "Implosion" because we had to change the texture of his bass sounded cause it was awful. No shit. Steve makes up lots of excuses, but in the end, it was all about Steve being the loudest guy on the album.

As if I didn't need further proof, he was thrown out of Iron Prostate for the same shit. Learn to play at a decent stage level, dood. 2 x 15" at 10 was too loud.

Steve also hated Implosion because he was just plain grumpy. I think it is a classic album, and hopefully will see the light of day once again. Grow up Steve.
I asked you to be in Iron Prostate because I felt bad about what happened in False Prophets - but you burnt me. Again.

I learned my lesson.

---George Tabb 10/06

Anonymous said...

Oh dear...I've just come across the controversy about the FP's IMPLOSION album. A lot of water
has passed under the bridge and yet it appears that Steve W. instead of acquiring some insight into what really happened during the production, has preferred, for rather vengeful reasons, to add oil to the fire by attempting delusional revisionism and character assassination thereby denying the rest of the band and followers the simple and deserved pleasure to see the album re-released.

Fact is that Mr Wishnia's ability to play the bass guitar with even a minimum of tunefulness or precision - not too critical when masked by sheer loudness in a live performance - proved to be totally unacceptable technically and musically when under the magnifying attributes of a studio microphone. I had no ill will whatsover towards him when we started off and when the problem arose during the recording of the rhythm section. myself and the engineers tried very hard to come to some understanding with him as to what was needed to remedy the situation. Alas, after many hours it appeared that his lack of musical sense, ability and collaborative concern were putting the whole project in jeopardy and there was no solution but to have someone else play the bass parts.

As regards the mix, the usual attention was paid to balancing all elements included and get the very best representation of what had been played. The engineers involved went on to record and mix The Phil Spector produced Ramones record which took place in the same studio immediately after us.
I can accept people disagreeing with the concept of the recording - an attempt to break out of the rather restrictive hardcore framework prevailing at the time by adding horns (arranged, BTW, by James Chance!) percussions and electronic elements, it was perhaps too adventurous and risky, sort of outside the favorite cannons of SW's'and even Jello Biaffra's tastes (which surprised me a great deal since he claimed to have been a Magma fan, a band I had produced a few years earlier) - but, as you can gather from George's and Debra's comments (and Ned's unpublished ones too) a good and constructive time was had by all,
except of course for SW himself.
Personally, I spent over a month working on the project, gave it all I could and to these days I'm still proud of it. As tme goes on I like it even more.
Anyone reading the discussion can decide who the self-centered "arrogant asshole" really is.
giorgio gomelsky

Anonymous said...

I love "Implosion".
I have to hear it regulary.
Hope you can set your personal differences aside in favour of the music.
Thanks for the music.

Anonymous said...

Jesus. Giorgio Gomelsky is not only a far bigger asshole than I ever thought he was, he’s also an incredible liar.

He says I was replaced by a studio bassist on the album? If that’s true, it’s been the world’s biggest secret for 20 years. For all the slagging I’ve taken from Debbie and George over the years, they’ve never once said “you sucked so bad we had to get a studio musician to redo your parts.” I’ve heard the record. It’s me.

I’d call this “delusional revisionism,” but I think he’s just lying. He says Ned agrees that I’m a bad musician; I’ve been friends with Ned for almost 25 years, played with him in a couple things after False Prophets, and he never made more than the mildest “why don’t you try it like this?” comments about my playing. The more telling fact is that Ned quit the band in the middle of the Implosion sessions. (Oh yeah, and the Ramones were in the same studio as us in ‘87, but the album they did with Phil Spector was recorded in L.A. in 1979.)

Giorgio’s comments that he and the engineers spent hours working with me on the bass sound are a sick joke. We rushed through the basic tracks for 11 songs in one weekend, and he spent about five minutes working on the bass sound, around four of which were devoted to telling me “That sounds like shit.” (For some reason, he insisted that I use my girlfriend’s bass, which was an instrument inferior to the Fender Precision I normally played.) In fact, I remember several times when I said, “I think I fucked up” or “I think I could do that one better,” and he’d say, “No, it’s fine, go on to the next one.” He only really started slagging me when I started disagreeing with him about the album’s sound and when I complained that all the overdubs were running the album way over budget (it was our money and Jello Biafra’s, not his).

Aside from calling me completely untalented, he also stereotypes me as a narrow-minded hardcore punk ideologue. This is outrageously ignorant. He doesn’t know that I was the band’s resident soul/funk/hip-hop fan, that I was listening to John Coltrane more than I was to hardcore in 1987. Where does he think the band’s eclecticism came from? It didn’t climb up and it didn’t fly! He casts himself as the heroic musical adventurer battling the forces of petty conservatism, namely me and Biafra. Well, I’ve had my arguments with Jello over the years, but the absolute LAST thing you could say about him is that he’s a narrow-minded punk purist.

The tragedy of Implosion is that we wrote the songs on it when we were trying to get OUT of the hardcore straightjacket, but keep the energy and passion we loved about punk and rock’n’roll. But Giorgio (even though he produced the Yardbirds) didn’t know how to mix punk ROCK—the hook on the fast songs was either the rhythm guitar or the bass, and it’s always buried. And there’s also a difference between being eclectic and adventurous and being cheesy and pretentious. The triggered-sample drumbeats on “Decade of Decay” are annoying electronic-toy wanking. (The version we recorded in 1983, unreleased until the “Blind Roaches” album, is the definitive one.) And “Implosion,” the only song on the album with a decent mix, is ruined by cheesy, painfully literal naval-buzzer and explosion sound effects.

The deepest problem was that as much as we argued among ourselves, False Prophets were a collective, DIY band. Giorgio’s attitude towards me was that I had no right even to be in the studio after I finished my parts, no right to any voice in how the album sounded. That’s why I call him arrogant.

People who know me know I can be cynical as fuck, but even after years working as a journalist, I’m still really astounded by how shamelessly some people can lie. But as the wise old queen told William Burroughs, “Some people are shits, darling.”

To the guy who wished that we could get over our personal differences: Well, there’s not much room for reconciliation when one side’s attitude is “you should get over it and admit you’re a no-talent piece of shit,” is there?

Listen to Blind Roaches and you can judge my playing there. Most people think it’s pretty good.
Meanwhile, there’s a very good chance that Stephan and I will do something in the future, so look for that...

Anonymous said...

Steve is awesome and a good friend of mine for the past 20 years. When I think of the False Prophets it's Steve and Stephan, my favorite line-up is in the early years when Donna was the drummer.Personally I found Deb to be quite the snob, sorry.. but thats how i feel. I remember a show we did with the Prophets in Tompkins Square Park in 1988 or 89 and Deb was totally making fun of us, on the side of the stage, as we played our band at the time was called Bubba Zenatti with RB. Korbet, we were doing the thrash metal thing. I guess she didn't like it......oh well..too bad, she was lucky I didn't smack her that day!
Donna Damage/NO THANKS

Anonymous said...

I have been working w/Steve for the last four or so years. We play not only w/Seth Tobocman and Mac McGill, we work on our own material as a duo. Even though both our backgrounds began in what you might call punk rock (I have credits
w/Greg Ginn, Kommunity FK, Cockfight, Doppelganger, to name a few). both of us share a love of and perform many styles. I personally took a liking to free
jazz/free improv. To say Steve is a purist, I must say it is only to his art and craft, not one or the other style.

For Mr. Gomelsky to be locking Steve into one style seems strange.
Steve has many varied recordings to his name. I can't say whether a few bitter folks from one LP in question have done the same.

I am one of many musicians who
grew as the years went by. The reason i play w/Steve and have stayed w/him all these years is that we share a love of music as a creative craft. I don't have to say we are rock, jazz or what-have-you
musicians... we just play... and play from the heart and soul... I call that pure.

On a bitter/sweet note, I was the drummer of choice for the final False Prophets gig at CBGBs this past Sept., and last month Steve and i as a duo played at the eviction demonstration for the closing of Tonic (stylistically spirit not so). I look forward to our next gigs/recording and I know that at some point we'll be playing w/
Stephan again... I look forward to it all!


I played drums for the prophets between 1980 and 1983..I missed the fp,s last gig at cbgb,s.. i heard they were awesome, i would have loved to seen them, better yet i would have loved to play with them, afterall i am part of the original line-up..if you guys ever get together again, please give me a call..PLEASE!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

All this is useless waste of cyber space, this band and the people that played in it(with respect to debby which I spent some gratifying intimite moments with, and which does not mean i think she had the real Punk spirit) had nothing to do with the spirit of Punk or Punk music, Original good Punk died out when 3rd generation punk (hate punk)bands like Exploited came out in 78´with hate punk stuff, from then on it was just mudslinging after mudslinging within the Punk sceene and outside of it, later came the Bully someone hardcore dunb sceene that really killed the fun in what was left of the Punk(?) rock sceene, if you want to hear some Punk with the real punk spirit go into and have a listen, and dodn`t waste your time with this or other CYber Jerry springer bullshit

Anonymous said...

I was in no famous bands but I played with Steve for several years. He's an ass-kicking bass player, punch and drive with ideas. He never played a song without adding something to it. More important, he is honest. When you're in a band with someone, even a casual outfit like us, dishonesty can't be hidden for long. Believe me, it would be hard to find two people more different than Steve and me, but I know to this day he'd help me if I needed it, as I would help him.

Anonymous said...

Damn, just release Implosion already. Sorry, Steve, it is what it is and it should be released as it was. After it sells 10 million copies you can put out the "definitive version." All the best, from the guy who helped hold the rope.

Anonymous said...

Actually, scratch my last post. In the interim I picked up the CD comp and initially was disappointed that the complete album was not there...but after a
couple spins I like the alternative. Anyway, gotta get Implosion out one way or another though from memory Surburbanites.." doesn't seem all that different, just crappier sound quality. Anyway, get IMPLOSION out, the kids download it as released so what's the difference?

Anonymous said...

Peter Campbell here . i live in South Brooklyn ;Ned Brewster and his wife Janet are wading out the horrible Bush years in Spain where they run an Art Gallery.
I find it amazing how Steve Wishnia can hold such a grudge for so long, and its amusing how he twists and turns to accept praise for IMPLOSION while disavowing it at the same time.
It's a good and original record. The sound is excellent, and the band is as good as it possibly be, so Giorgio Gomelsky definitely did a good job as producer.
But the cool thing is that Giorgio got to give it the Giorgio vision, that grand vision he has where all his rock friends and all his jazz friends get to meet
at that great music fest in the sky- between his ears-,so yes it is a Giorgio Gomelsky record too.
Go Giorgio !

Anonymous said...

This needs some balancing and clarification:
I have to say that Steve Wishnia was quite a good eclectic bass Player when I played in False Prophets with him, and now he's basically a Master Musician on the instrument- so if Giorgio is claliming that Bill Laswell or whoever dubbed in Steve's playing, then they followed Steve's playing note for note, cause I have no hesitation saying I hear Steve on IMPLOSION.
Steve had the same problem adjusting from live to Studio playing on the first alblum too, but we worked it out.
I too wrote some of IMPLOSION... I'll not bore you with the details...
Being part of the nascent NYC Hardcore scene was great!-Peter C.

Debra said...


Thought you all would enjoy the YouTube channel False Prophets bassist Anthony Sepulveda and I have created for False Prophets fans -- tons of live footage from tours all over the US and Europe. Enjoy!!

We would love to include more footage of the band from the early days with Peter Campbell and Steve Wishnia. If you have any, please send to Anthony at .

I want to add that Peter is correct...nobody dubbed in Steve Wishnia's playing on IMPLOSION. Giorgio wanted to have the engineer come in and overdub some of Steve's playing because Giorgio felt it wasn't up to par in spots, but I, Stephan and Ned felt strongly that that was not in keeping with the band's ethos and would really be an insult to Steve. Steve paints me as his enemy or something but I strongly defended him in this instance.

We spoke to Giorgio and made it very clear we would not allow any overdubbing of Steve's parts, and Giorgio backed down. We also never mentioned it to Steve because we didn't want him to feel bad. I wish it had not come out here but want to clarify that all the bass playing on IMPLOSION is Steve Wishnia. And I agree with Peter that Giorgio did an amazing job of producing that album!!
Thanks! Debra

john chuckalumba said...

Implosion is one of my favourite albums . I think that the dynamics in a studio can seriously add to the energy of the record, even when the recording environment creates tensions that leave members of the band feeling bitter. The experience of that energy good or bad is expressed in the record and that very tension adds to the great creative wealth that the band already bring to the party. My own experience of this was when working with Electric Wizard on Dope Throne with Rolf Startin. The Recording was made at a very stressful time. It's my opinion that this stress added the extra grit to what a already great band bought to the studio, and with the magic dust that Ralph sprinkled a great record was made. Jus Oborn told me he coud'nt listen to that record for about 5 years.
So as some others have said hopefully Implosion will be re-released when strong feeling subside, as it's a work of pure genius.

Anonymous said...

Man guys! Really just re release everything so we can buy it online or on CD and be able to listen to it again! I've got Vinyl of the first LP but getting it on my iPhone... I would gladly pay for it again! Saw the band during the Invisible People tour and was fortunately able to buy the cd there, but totally missed Implosion! False Prophets were one of the shining hopes that hardcore punk could reinvent itself into something really amazing and everyone deserves to be able to listen to what you guys accomplished and how much influence you've had on the alternative punk scene.

Anonymous said...

What a big pile of dog shit. You old fucks need to get a life. I have been a FP's fan for more than 20 years and seeing your comments just make me sick. I hope you die.

Marcelo said...

Hi everyone...looking for the lyrics of Implosion LP... any help ?? english is not my mother lenguaje... thanks a lot !!!

Anonymous said...

I recentley picked up the Implosion lp and it is amazing, completly original. Thanks. I will contine to enjoy it in the last of the LES, aka South Brooklyn.