Corrosion of Conformity have been at it for over three decades now. Formed in 1982 as a hardcore punk band in Raleigh, North Carolina, within a couple of years of existence they came to the forefront, along with DRI and Suicidal Tendencies, of the burgeoning “crossover” scene, which was the initial melding of hardcore punk and thrash metal—two subcultures that were strangely previously at odds with one another in the early ‘80s.
COC has continued successfully, throughout the years, eventually settling in to a slower, heavier, bluesy-metal sound.
This week, COC will be playing the North Carolina State Fair, but it’s not the first time they have made an appearance on that stage, as The News and Observer reports:
Thirty-two years ago, Dorton was the site of a battle of the bands called “Battlerock ’84.” COC, whose members were still teenagers, was among the contestants. And no one outside of Raleigh’s punk cognoscenti knew what to make of them.
COC’s performance would end almost immediately after security mistook the crowd response for a riot and shut it down. In the ensuing scuffle, COC vocalist Eric Eyche was arrested, COC guitarist Woody Weatherman’s mother had an altercation resulting in charges – and a legend was born.
The scene, as described by band members, was a misunderstanding between security and concert-goers with the officials being confused over the slam-dancing, freaking out, and shutting the show down, which merely escalated the volatile situation.
They moved to shut COC down and pulled the plug. The head of the stage crew wound up onstage in a confrontation with [vocalist Eric] Eyche, and he sustained injuries after being thrown into the crowd. That got the cops’ attention.
“What ensued was a misunderstanding,” said Steve Bass, the promoter. “They saw Eric as instigating a riot, so they tried to restrain him, put hands on him and it did not go well with the crowd.”
Once the music stopped, multiple altercations broke out between band members, State Fair police and the stage crew. Eyche was the only one arrested on the scene – taken offstage as the crowd chanted “T.J. Hooker,” a reference to the cheesy cop series starring William Shatner.
In Eyche’s telling, the cops’ treatment of him was not exactly gentle.
“When they took me out back, a female officer was detaining me by a squad car,” Eyche said. “I kept asking her what I’d done, she kept telling me to shut up and I finally said, ‘Baby, (expletive) you.’ She grabbed the back of my head and slammed me into the car. ‘You shut up now,’ she said. ‘O.K., got it!’ ”
But Eyche wasn’t the only one who got into trouble with the law at that fateful show…
See who else ran afoul of police at the show, after the jump…