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No One Rules

Have you been into the John Varvatos store lately, at 315 Bowery?

Did you feel a presence, someone or something, looming nearby? For those familiar with the history of the address, it is a troubling ordeal even to pass by on the sidewalk to see what’s become of one of New York City’s most fabled blocks, never mind the specters who haunt its vicinity. I refer, of course, to the skinheads of New York past. Ghosts nowadays, they used to stomp through this city like wild mastodons, rendering entire neighborhoods safe, or unsafe, depending on who you were.

In what reads like a greatest hits of NYHC flyers and paraphernalia, “No One Rules: New York Hardcore 1981-1984″ has reunited the gang, so to speak. They’re all in here; Captain Hardcore, the Beastie Boys dog, Crucified Skin (for his sins), Stigma, Ronnie Reagan. Of course, Reagan wasn’t a skin, but he may have sent a small platoon of them to quash the Sandinistas in Nicaragua during his term … we just don’t know! Skinheads have always been smeared by society, portrayed as bonehead Neo-Nazis. But let’s not let a few bad apples spoil the bunch. “No One Rules” features the cream of the crop, the Unity skins, guys who pay their dues, and yeah, they may get angry and have the tendency to break through a brick wall now and then, but it’s just for fun, for art. And that wall was set for demolition next week.

Getting into the meat of this fine collection of seminal-era NYHC ephemera, we saw details in some of our favorite old flyers that we never noticed before. That’s because all of the artwork featured within comes from the original dope. We should stand and clap for the good people at Colossal Man Press for selflessly devoting themselves to the perpetuation of these valuable national treasures.

Nicolas Cage just came into our office, sweating. He looked terrible. In his frantic state, he demanded to take photos of this book. He was going on about “clues.” I said, “Yeah, you can take photos, just let me save them to post on Twitter.” He asked how many followers I had and I said 165. He laughed and handed me the camera. Trumbull Magazine is proud to present “No One Rules: New York Hardcore 1981-1984,” photographed by N. Cage. We can’t wait for the next volume.

Buy it. (Limited to 350 copies)