Friday, January 21, 2011

Hardcore New York

Reader John Lee sent in a link to an evocative collection of photos from the days of New York's 1980s hardcore scene. Blogger Street Carnage got the shots from photographer Brooke Smith--as he says, the actress "best known for her role as the woman down in the well in Silence of the Lambs."

photo: Brooke Smith

Brooke Smith also has a place in my heart for playing my favorite character in the fantastic movie Series 7, a little-seen reality show spoof that's well worth checking out. She's a gun-toting pregnant lady who does a splendid performance to Joy Division's "Love Will Tear Us Apart." Need I say more?

photo: Brooke Smith

Anyway, here are a few of Brooke's shots to whet your appetite (click to see them all), including this one of the northwest corner of St. Mark's and Avenue A--a very different time in the East Village.

photo: Brooke Smith

...and the obligatory Google Streetview "today" shot, complete with a stroller. And lots of bucolic trees.



EV Grieve said...

Thanks for sharing these photos...

And yes — Series 7 was a great film... and also starring Donna Hanover Giuliani... I also liked Brooke in Louis Malle's Vanya on 42nd Street...

Basia said...

Same street corner, two different countries.

John E. Lee said...

She was also great in a guest spot on Homicide: Life on the Street. It was years ago but I still remember how good she was in it.

Two diff planes of reality.

JamesChanceOfficial said...

Wow! I used to know Brooke - right around the time she was making Silence of the Lambs. I'm going to try to get in touch. Thanks JM.

alone in the dark said...

My husband's documentary film in his second year at film school (SUNY Purchase) was ostensibly about Jimmy Gestapo but it ended up being about Brooke and her friends. She was very much part of the hardcore scene and a cool chick too. Wish more pictures were forthcoming.

I came in at the tail end of the time period documented in these photos but I'm still glad that I knew this New York.

Anonymous said...

Are you opposed to trees being planted on the city's sidewalks? I think the benefits outweigh the loss of a more gritty aesthetic.

and then there was METAL said...

ny will always be hxc

Caleo said...

My God, those 2 pix say it all. Sometimes memories of how the city looked/felt back in the 80's start to dim somehow, and then 1 picture brings it all back in focus.
And Jeremiah mentioning the ever present stroller in today's EV overlooks the interesting sight of a child being carried on his papa's shoulders, no stroller needed.

City Of Strangers said...

Jeremiah - thanks for the photos. Boy, that takes me back. Skinheads!

I took in the scene in Montreal and London in the 80's, (though curiously the first bands I saw when I moved out to Montreal in 86 were the Cromags and Agnostic Front) but hey in those photos you could be there as well.

Kudos to Brooke for the photos - I never would have guessed she was part of the scene . ..


Anonymous said...

Alone in the Dark,
Brooke here. Thanks for your comments.
I would love to see the doc your husband made... it sort of rings a bell, but I smoked a lot of weed back in the day and my memory is sketchy at best...
Please let me know how I can get in touch.

drewcarolan said...

Love these photos so much! They are the real deal.
I did portraits of kids at the cb's matinees between 83-85 and have followed many since then. You can see them at my web site. Miss the old NYC but we have our pics to preserve a very special time. Thanks Brooke!

chris flash said...

Now THAT was a neighborhood!!!!

alone in the dark said...

Wow, Brooke!

Sorry to get back to this so late but husband says, without wanting his name splattered on the net to 'ask Annie W.' She can get in touch with him.

Hope we can get you a copy of the footage. Cheers!

clash67 said...

@ Alone in the Dark,

It's Annie W.

Please tell your husband he's no longer on FB contacts and to get it touch, if possible.

Thanks, and hope you guys are well.