Saturday, 23 June 2012

Front Toward Enemy

I'm guessing that most people reading this won't have heard of the record or band I'm featuring today. The band is called F.T.E. (which stands for 'Front Toward Enemy') and this double 7" has taken me YEARS to acquire.

The band's name is taken from a type of landmine (the M18 Claymore Mine) which has the words 'Front Toward Enemy' written across the top. It's no surprise therefore that the cover features a picture of said mine.

The reason that I was after this record is that it was released by Exit Records, which was a sub label of Wreck-age Records, which was a label that I used to collect back when they were active in the mid to late 90s. Wreck-age used to release lesser known bands from the NY area, but they had a pretty good roster - Bad Trip, Mind Over Matter, Yuppicide amongst others. Also, they used to put limited colour vinyl pressings of most of their releases, but the numbers of colour that they made were low. Most colour pressings of their 7"s were out of 200 copies, whereas there were usually somewhere in the region of 2500-3000 black copies. So less than one in ten a colour copy made some of them hard to find.

This double 7" was actually released in 1996 and this is first copy that I have ever owned. I would buy stuff put out on Wreck-age & Exit at the time this came out, but somehow this record didn't seem to get out much. I only knew of this record because it was listed on the label's discography, but other than that I would not have known it existed at all. So I put it on my want list as a reminder that I didn't have it. What I could not have known at the time was that I would not get a sniff of one until 2012!

In the end I had this sent to me my Nick Mango. Nick's is WAY more obsessed with Wreck-age stuff than I am, and in the past few years has managed to track down every piece of colour wax they released, as well as some test pressings too. I like to think I helped him because a few years ago I was able to tell him about some of the colour records he had which (correct me if I'm wrong, Nick) he didn't know about at the time. So anyway, a few months ago he let me know that he had managed to track down a colour copy of this F.T.E. record. Not only that though, he had also picked up a spare! A few months later and the dude sent it to me. He wouldn't even let me pay him the postage costs. What a guy.

For those who are interested, here's all I could find on the internerd about the band:

F.T.E (Front Toward Enemy) was started in 1994. None of the members had played in bands before except guitarest XSteveX, who had played in a NYC band called Yuppicide. The bands roots are in the northeast, but if you didn't know any better you would think it was a southern California band from the early 80's. The band grew up pissing off the general public, skateboarding and BMX riding, wishing they lived on the West Coast. The music is fast and aggro like the sk8 rock bands of yesterday.

Anyone else ever heard this band, or own this record? Even better, anyone happen to have mp3s of the songs?


Jayb said...

They were from CT if I'm not mistaken. At least some members were. Steve Karp is xstevex. He did tattoos at kustum kulture in plainvillle ct if I'm not mistaken. My memory isn't what it used to be

Anonymous said...

The vocalist was a skateboarder named Harley who had his own indie deck company called "Hasbeen" if I'm not mistaken-

Alternate 1995 said...

You definitely helped me. No doubt about it. Information is extremely sparse. I got a few posts coming soon about these 2 labels. Should be fun.

xNBSx said...

Steve from FTE posted about this today on Facebook. They released a "discography" CD as well that has all their stuff on it. Great band, even better bunch of dudes. I feel if Steve hadn't been in Yuppicide at the same time, FTE might have done a bit more.

FTE had a profound impact on my life, not only from seeing them a handful of times in the 90's, but becoming friends with them in the 2000's when I tricked them into letting a band I was in at the time, play their reunion show. Suckers.

I'm sure any questions needed, Steve will be more than happy to answer. His ego needs inflating as of late :P

Hendrik Attema said...

Got the black version of this single back in the day when FTE played with Yuppicide in Amsterdam (The Netherlands). It is still somewhere in my collection. A few years back I bought the "A Good Example Of A Bad Example" CD also at a Yuppicide show. What an amazing band FTE remains....