Mischief Brew Biography

Mischief Brew is a band from Philadelphia which plays DIY anarcho-punk music, also incorporating a variety of styles including American folk, swing, Gypsy-punk and country. It was started by Erik Petersen as a solo project, but eventually grew into a band. Petersen draws inspiration from the protest movements of the 1960s, "the idea that rebellion in music didn't originate in punk rock" (Profane Existence #54, 2007), and anti-establishment artists like Woody Guthrie and Crass. Petersen's lyrics often pay homage to American labor radicalism of the early 20th century. Mischief Brew has released albums and EPs on many different labels, notably Art of the Underground, Gunner Records, and Fistolo Records. In support of these records, Mischief Brew has toured extensively throughout the United States and Europe. When playing live, Mischief Brew has performed with four to five people, incorporating such instruments as junk/found percussion, trumpet, accordion, violin, mandolin, and vibraphone into their set.


Mischief Brew started after Erik Petersen's previous band, The Orphans, broke up in 2000. At first, the band consisted of only Erik on an acoustic guitar or mandolin, playing songs off of the Mirth demo. In 2003, Erik released the Bellingham & Philadelphia split with Robert Blake, and the Bakenal CDEP. After extensive acoustic touring in support of the first two releases, Petersen assembled the first full-band incarnation of Mischief Brew, featuring Chris "Doc" Kulp (of Red Devil) on drums and Sean "Shantz" Yantz (of Evil Robot Us' and Abusing the Word) on bass. In 2005, he released his first full-length, Smash The Windows, featuring guest spots by artists from Leftöver Crack, World/Inferno Friendship Society, and Guignol. This release saw him experiment more musically, with styles ranging from gypsy-folk to swing.

The second full-length was Songs From Under the Sink, a collection of songs written between 1997 and 2002 which stresses his anarchist beliefs and is complemented by his clever guitar melodies. Yantz left the band shortly after Songs from Under the Sink was released, and was replaced for a few shows by Kevin Holland and later by Shawn St. Clair (of Endless Nightmare, Lost Cause, Stations, the Bad Dudes and Wrought With Sickness), who currently plays bass.

Petersen also actively supports his political views; for example he headlined a show in support of a Food Not Bombs rally held by Tent State University at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ.

Mischief Brew's released Photographs from the Shoebox in 2008, a split LP/CD with Joe Jack Talcum of The Dead Milkmen.

In 2009, two versions of the song "Punx Win!" appeared on a split with Andrew Jackson Jihad. Rather than a traditional 7" single, Pirates Press Records released the record as an 8" with parallel grooves, therefore able to play either version of the track depending on where the needle is dropped.

Erik Petersen and Guignol collaborated in 2009 on Fight Dirty. Mischief Brew released The Stone Operation in May 2011. The previous year, on October 18, 2010, an unmastered track from the album, "Dallas In Romania," was previewed by Y-Rock on WXPN.
Source: wikipedia.org
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