JUNE 21, 2017
“LOOK OUT BELOW” (WRITER: PETE HOLLY)
ARTIST: PETE HOLLY & THE LOOKS
RELEASED 1981 ON 7” EP AND ON BATTLE OF THE GARAGES VOL. 1 LP
As a young person growing up in Ronald Reagan’s America, the idea of going to fight some stupid imperialist war was certainly a concern. The Vietnam War was still a recent memory for people of my generation, and when I had to register for the draft at age 18, I was pissed off.
Plenty of us worried about this stuff. At what point would our atomic bombing of Japan come home to roost? How long would it take before our nationalism got someone angry enough at America to make us live through the unthinkable?
Of course, the ensuing three and a half decades have been more about America dying from a thousand paper cuts rather than one A-bomb, and we’ve done little in the last few months to make ourselves any safer.
This means it’s time, again, for Pete Holly & the Looks, a trio from Boise, Idaho that cut a three-song 7” EP in 1981 which featured “Look Out Below,” a simple song of paranoia and worry about the bomb. The band played this 60s-styled hard-rock song with punk rock abandon. Greg Shaw’s BOMP label released the EP in 1981, and also included “Look Out Below” on a compilation called Battle of the Garages, Vol. 1 that same year on his other label, Voxx.
To me, this was everything punk rock could be: immediate, topical, musical, raw, morbidly funny, scared, determined, tuneful. Those of us who knew it loved it.
Pete Holly, a true outsider, continued to record but never reached stardom or anything like it. He died in Idaho in 2010.