The NY Times recently featured an op-ed by Jessica Bruder, which details the death of punk in the US/UK. You can check out the full article here and an excerpt below.
Here in Brooklyn, members of the Iranian punk rock band The Yellow Dogs recently won asylum after fleeing two years ago from Tehran, where playing rock music is punishable by flogging, fines and jail time.
With these revolutionary rockers in mind, take a stroll down the Bowery in Lower Manhattan, as I did recently. A friend dragged me into a high-end menswear boutique. Inside, jackets selling for more than $1,000 apiece hung against brick walls covered in seditious scrawls and yellowing concert posters.
A bored-looking clerk in a fedora sat on a small stage that looked like a replica from a club, tapping out laconic rhythms on a drum kit, watching customers mill around. A few minutes passed before I realized we were standing on hallowed ground: the former home of CBGB, the club where American punk was born, now a temple for commerce and nostalgic kitsch.
I left the store vaguely depressed. While punk’s heirs around the world continue to defy autocrats, risking their freedom to stand against social injustice and economic polarization, it’s been many years since British and American punk had that kind of raw influence.