Articles - Misc. - "Just Get Down to the Horizontal Action!"

In my runnings from the P.C. Punks I fell into a record shop. I was looking for some sanctuary, where I could say "fag" and masturbate whenever and wherever I wanted. It isn’t easy these days. It’s a battle. And yr all fags. It isn’t easy to just do what you want, say what you want. It isn’t… Rock ‘N’ Roll all nite and party and get laid AND do it in the blanket of satire. There are few people who "get" me. Some of my friends get me. Some of them think they get me… But I’d like to think the people of Horizontal Action really do get me. So like I said, in my runnings from the P.C. Punks I fell into a record shop. This record shop, where I eventually started working at, housed the raw, the rock, and the corrupted, alcohol-soaked mayhem that I craved. And it is there where I was introduced to Horizontal Action.

I was floored. The year was 1999. MRR was soooo far in the toilet that it’s foot stopped twitching. Hit List came out and I thought maybe these guys could be the new gladiators, in their shining armor with their glistening swords held high up in the air; but no, they fell to the tigers. Who then? Who? Then my record store got a shipment of records and such, and with it, a few copies of Horizontal Action, issue #4. I thought to myself, well, this looks interesting. And you know what? It was! A zine…that’s interesting! Fuckin’ Christ! These people actually LIKE rock ‘n’ roll. They’re not jaded. But they are knowledgeable and they know when they’re being fucked. They’re honest AND they don’t give a fuck. Fuck! They’re JUST LIKE ME! So now I’m doing this. Not for me… I know Horizontal Action is cool. They like the Gilmore Girls for cryin’ out loud! I do this for you. Because if you don’t know about Horizontal Action, well, you fuckin’ should. And if yr a fan of then yr a fan of Horizontal Action. I mean they absolutely LUV rock ‘n’ roll! And porn… Oh, should I have mentioned that earlier, huh? Cause I know they get a lot of slack for that. But to that I have this to say - Sex has been thee mainstay of rock ‘n’ roll. Why do people start rock ‘n’ roll groups – Money or Sex. And since we’re talking about garage/trash can/punk groups, they can really only get sex. So stop trying to see yourself as what you want to be – God’s little pet, and see yourself as what you are – a sexed-up rock ‘n’ roll machine.

Okay, I asked Horizontal Action’s Publisher "In-Heat" Uncle Ted for a brief history of the mag, and the motive for being one of the mad scientists pulling the electric lever, lighting up this Frankenstein of Rock ‘N’ Roll Zines:



The connection between sex and rock‘n’roll is undeniable. Through the years as rock‘n’roll has fallen under different namesakes: garage, punk, and even metal, one thing has remained constant, ----- the underlining connection with sex. From Elvis’s sweltering on stage hip action, to Chuck Berry's underage chick fixation, to The Stooges "I Wanna Be Your Dog," and up to the contemporary Demolition Doll Rods, it’s all about sex.

Sex is at the core of any vital music, and always has been. Hip Hop, R&B, Rock’n’ Roll, Punk, Country, it's all been dominated by whoever exudes the most raw sexuality. By combining these two complementary elements that originated (and even still co-exist) together, we're just opening everyone's eyes to something very obvious, yet unprecedented!

In 1996, we had talked about doing a zine. Knowing that there was a void to be filled between sex and rock‘n’roll, we knew HORIZONTAL ACTION would be perfect to fill the big, gaping whole left by other magazines (you know the ones) that filled their pages with unwanted leftist political bullshit. Music, especially rock‘n’roll, was about having a good time and essentially nothing else.

We knew that in order to have a successful magazine we needed to find our niche. There are, and were at the time of course, a zillion music zines out there. We needed something to set us apart from the rest. We needed an angle, that would both illustrate the connection between sex and rock‘n’roll, and be unique. So, what other "art form" has sex sewn in at its base? Well, that’s where the porn comes in. It seemed simple. In the beginning finding nudie pictures was a chore. We thumbed through old men's mags we had sitting around and used a lot of photos we had shot at the Miss Nude America Pageant we attend every year religiously, but nothing really stood out as feature material. Then, as time went on, and we built relationships with some of the adult companies and it became easier. Not only did girls begin to send us pictures of themselves, but many of the video companies who’s films we review started to send us their releases. Now we have to swim through them just to reach our desks!

Our first issue had a distribution of 251 copies; the same number of dudes Anabell Chong screwed in the first of the "Worlds Biggest Gang Bang" series released that same year. Now, 5 years later our distribution is 4,000 worldwide, and we are still growing (we have distribution directly to independent record stores by Choke in the US, Incognito in Europe, and Corduroy in Australia). In 2000, we were approached by Tower Records to supply their international chain of stores, and since then, our readership base has grown like wildfire.

People seemed to enjoy the magazine, and in no time we had anyone even slightly interested, clamoring to contribute to our growing number of pages. And the girls! Just when you think that Horizontal Action is an offensive sexist, hedonistic publication that will forever remain stashed under guy's mattresses, the girls come running. We now have a group of about 25 people that regularly collaborate and contribute to each issue. And the funny part is, six of the contributors are female. See, what these girls know, (and what some "men" may not know) is that we were never intended to be a magazine for male perverts that know their rock'n roll, but more like a new plateau. Kind of a sexual "comfort zone" for anyone that enjoys general "pleasure" in their nether regions, male or female. And don't forget about the first-class REAL rock‘n’ roll that keeps the magazine so esteemed with the world's greatest band features. Instead of conducting the same, banal, droopy interviews that many of the other music magazines print, we decided to delve deeper into the mating rituals and goofy sexual shenanigans that so many of today's great bands have experienced. Of course, no one we have interviewed takes themselves too seriously, and therefore their true honesty and modesty in our arena of sex and rock‘n’roll, makes them shine like they never knew they could.

Our intentions have always been clear. Sex and rock‘n’roll are two of the most important things in our lives, and have been for the better part of our lives.

So there you have it. To live and have fun and fuck and listen to the Makers while yr doing it. This is what life is all about. And life is just beginning for Horizontal Action. They are currently working on other cool projects, throwing huge jams like The Chicago Rock ‘N’ Roll Blackout! How does this happen? We asked Uncle Ted and here’s what he had to say:


Horizontal Action's Promotions division was born with its administrator, with Matt Billiams taking over the event booking in 2000. In the last five years, we've demoralized and immortalized venues such as The Beat Kitchen, Roby's, Double Door, Subterranean, Big Horse Lounge, and the unforgettable Pop's On Chicago. Each place loved the group of people that came out in droves for the bands, and with the outrageous amount of money poured into the bars each night, they sure couldn't pass up any opportunity to help Horizontal Action put on a show.


Some of the notable bands we've brought to Chicago over the past five years...

>The CLONE DEFECTS (Detroit, MI) - Tom Perkins
>The DIRTBOMBS (Detroit, MI) - In The Red
>The BLACKS (Sweden) - Big Neck
>The LOST SOUNDS (Memphis, TN) - Big Neck records
>The BASEBALL FURIES (Buffalo, NY) - Estrus/Flying Bomb
>The PIRANHAS (Detroit, MI) - Tom Perkins
>The KILL-A-WATTS (Milwaukee, WI) - Rip Off
>The COMAS (Clinton, MS) - Therapeutic
>The HOOKERS (Lexington, KY) - Sub Pop/Scooch Pooch
>The VULTURES (Seattle, WA) - Dirtnap
>The MULLENS (Dallas, TX) - Get Hip
>The BLOWTOPS (Buffalo, NY) -Big Neck
>The DAYLIGHT LOVERS (Montreal, Quebec) - Sympathy/SackO'Shit

> Me: Hmm… The Chicago Blackout? That sounds like fun.
> You: But Joe, yr saying this that Blackout thing sounds fun, but you didn’t go to it.
> Me: No I didn’t bunky, BUT Todd Killings (Editor and Coordinator for Horizontal Action) did, and here’s how it all when down according to him:


Horizontal Action’s first Annual CHICAGO ROCK’N ROLL BLACKOUT (April 5, 6, 7th @ Beat Kitchen) Three nights of ass-shakin’, thigh-squeezin’ Rock’n Roll was the best we could come up with. Ever wonder what it would be like to go to one of those fancy Vegas Shakedown shows, except you actually got to see all the good bands, you didn’t have to wear a goofy wristband, and you didn’t have to stand around for 14 hours straight? Well, that’s what we tried to do right here in Chicago for our very own three-night REAL Rock’n Roll showcase named after our favorite weekend passtime, the all-American Blackout! After lotsa coordinating by Billy D. Grilliams, the trap was set to go at the Beat Kitchen. Thursday’s lineup started with Milwaukee’s favorite drunken raw-dog gladiators, the MISTREATERS. The soundman had been putting up with nine hours of Tav Falco’s soundcheck and erupted with rage, and threatening me with a hammer, and backed me into a corner to ‘discuss’ the band’s time slots. Luckily the MISTREATERS helped me shake that off, and man were these guys drunk! Hoppin’ around like a buncha dusted drifters, and never missing a shot. Wait till you see the video footage of those drunks climbing around on the construction equipment outside the bar! Seattle’s VALENTINE KILLERS tore through their blazing NBT-style numbers with fire in their bellies and chicks on their minds. Great guys, great time. Hot shit, don’t miss ‘em! Then the night’s headliners, TAV FALCO and the PANTHER BURNS came up. Apparently Tav’s pretty demanding, pretentious, and unpredictable. Hell, he even ‘rejected’ all the music we brought into play between sets! It was an entertaining set, with the second guitarist stealing the show most of the time. So far no fights, no broken hymen or broken hearts. The next night was when all the devil’s dust from the North really blew into town. The always elegant Andy G and Candy Del Mar from NYC’s ROLLER KINGS dined on cheap broth, as Timmy Vulgar (CLONE DEFECTS) and Lyle Sheraton (DAYLIGHT LOVERS) converged once again like two wild brothers reunited by insanity. Chicago’s BLACK BEAUTIES blew the lid off the joint as the Rock’n Roll world’s fans and luminaries hung out together like a family might do. Pounding shots, pinching asses? Yep, sounds like family! And, as Canderson poured the last drops of burning love into ‘Action Party’, I could finally breathe, and went for more booze, stat! Then, Lyle, Warden, and TT hit the stage in a violent eruption of liquid sex. But somehow the front of their pants remained dry. The ladies’ panties however, were not. Ball-crushing rock’n roll desperation, case closed! The CLONE DEFECTS emerged next with a heavy band member spat to add to the tension. I knew this was gonna just spin outta control. The best band in the land? Straight out of Rock’n Roll heaven and spilled all over your fucking face! Next, after a couple of failed attempts at mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, I managed to find more booze and the ROLLER KINGS coming out swingin’. Andy G was dressed to the hilt with fuckin’ suspenders and a silky tie, and Candy looked as hot as ever tuggin’ on those bass strings. Everyone was hammered, and the rock’n roll just hurt good enough to get everyone up front squirming for more. Great use of the SEX-a-phones, guys! It really makes the chicks hornier than a three-peckered billy goat. Pure Rock’n Roll heaven. Finally, Saturday comes around and all the rest of the heads roll into town for the big party. Keg’s on ice, grill’s on, and the chicks are just pouring in. The GUILTY PLEASURES bash out the first bang of the night, and man did them asses start shakin! Planet of the Gapes! The boys did a great job of getting the crowd sweaty, and basically burst all the hymen in the first few rows after the first few minutes. Now that’s class. Next up was Joe (ex-DIRTYS frontman) Burdick’s new group with Mary from the DETROIT COBRAS on guitar as an added bonus. The other added bonus were the hot-shot twin chicks on guitar and drums which gave everything about them a sexually surreal feel, and that’s exactly what we’re doing down here at Horizontal Action. Providing you delusional rock’n roll with hot gals belting out the buzz. Great shit, keep your eyes out for their new releases on Sympathy soon. Next at bat were our great buddies from Dallas, the MULLENS, who never disappoint live or on record. Ever! These guys came in to blaze, and they fucking changed everyone’s shorts by the end of their set, for sure. All the hits, all the power, and all the rock’n roll hooks in all the right places makes these guys the toughest act to follow. But can Mick Collins let you down on a Saturday night in Chicago? Hail nah muthafukkas! White girls were left in the dust as Detroit’s superheroes stormed and plowed right through all the ass-shakers on their hot new LP. Can it get any better? Yep. The hot tub party afterwards took care of any stray dry clothes, and as today’s real rock’n roll legends blasted off into oblivion, we pulled ourselves back up and got down again. Wah-hooo!

Wah-hooo indeed… Well, I hope you have learned something about Horizontal Action. Remember to enjoy the things that are in the NOW. Horizontal Action lives in the NOW. And for all the player-haters out there, Uncle Ted has this, and only this to say to you:


We really have no idea why someone who apparently loves RAW, DIRTY, RAUNCHY REAL Rock'n Roll music (in their heart) would have any misunderstanding about our publication. Everyone that we have met either in person, or through correspondence has shared a similar view on how our magazine portrays its content. Maybe if people knew the staff better, they would shirk any predispositions toward what we're doing. But for the most part, most cognizant readers who understand irony, sarcasm, and humor enjoy it wholeheartedly. Of course, we're not out to objectify or hurt anyone, but we also know how to have fun and we don't want the magazine to slip into the mainly boring content level that usually is dished out in most rock'n roll publications. We believe that in times like these, we need to have as much fun and enjoyment as we can handle before our time runs out. So for anyone that takes our content the wrong way, we hope you'll take another look at Horizontal Action and try to clear your mind of all the social taboos and political-correctness that continues to sterilize every other facet of our culture. And have fun, goddamnit!

Horizontal Action Magazine is distributed independent in the US by Choke and Tower Records, in Europe/Asia by Incognito, and in Australia/Pacific Rim by Corduroy/Dropkick distribution.

Horizontal Action
1433 N. Wicker Park Ave.
Suite 2, Chicago, IL 60622, USA

Article by Joe Domino.
Pictures by Horizontal Action.

© 2003