Defend Your Ballot: Rob Harvilla, Pazz and Jop 2012 Contributor

Pazz and Jop
You can't really know where you're headed unless you know where you've been. For that reason, we're taking a look back at Pazz & Jop 2012 to drill down into the ballots of contributors and voters who participated. Maybe amongst the rubble we'll find clues about what lies ahead for music lovers in 2013. Here, former Village Voice music editor Rob Harvilla defends his ballot.

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Live: Fighting Off Punk Nostalgia with Lifetime and the Bouncing Souls

The Bouncing Souls/Lifetime
Webster Hall
Thursday, August 20

We will do our absolute best to refrain from ascribing metaphorical significance to the guy in the wheelchair at last night's Bouncing Souls 20th anniversary show who calmly spun his way into the thick of the crowd, had himself hoisted into the air and--as a rumble of pointing and disbelief spread across Webster Hall--proceeded to crowdsurf his way up to the front of the stage. "That's Jersey right there for you," said Souls bassist Bryan Kienlen, who could've just as easily been talking about his own band, a vast majority of the crowd, or the evening's New Brunswick-birthed openers, Lifetime.

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Lifetime Throw Off Pete Wentz's Shackles


Jersey hardcore punks Lifetime had an immortal run in the mid/late '90s; their template, as much or more as anyone else's, was the final late-stage emo adaptation that set the table for the dudes who would almost make money playing similar music--the Get Up Kids, Jimmy Eat World--and then finally for those who actually did make money: Fall Out Boy, Paramore, All-American Rejects, etc. Lifetime were not around to take part.

The band broke up in 1997 after a particularly great show, right around the time their third record, Jersey's Best Dancers, came out. 2005 reunion shows birthed a 2006 reformation. In a turn I'd like to call baffling but which actually made tremendous amounts of sense, Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz was the guy to come in and offer a record deal. After issuing a defensive statement ("Pete and Decaydance are giving us an opportunity to the make the record we want to make while still staying in control of our music and our lives...") Lifetime accepted the offer, and recorded 2007's Lifetime, an actually pretty solid quasi-hardcore record that disappeared straight into the ether, probably because it was on Decaydance, a label that had very little to say to the people who'd loved Lifetime in the first place.

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