Tuesday 10 January 2023


State Of Fear are maybe the best ever crust appearance, one of the most furious and energetic bands out there, even active in relatively short but turbulent few years they become wide known, become inspiration and influence to the whole bunch of bands and will stay in crust history books forever.. also will be one of my personal favorites and often screaming from the speakers here at crucified freedom headquarter, that's for sure..
below is a story about them written by John Krupa (vocal/bass), published on inlay for "A Tribute To State Of Fear" compilation LP released by the end of last year in collaboration of a few diy record labels.. 
I apologize for the possible minor mistakes because I literally rewrite/typed all that from a photo of inlay from the internet..

1994 was a big year for me. I was 20 years old and after 5 years of being involved in DIY punk in Connecticut with my fanzine Adversity and my bands Deformed Conscience and Sasquatch, I was on the road doing tours. In the spring of that year, I helped organize a US tour for Dirt and Hellkrusher from the UK and in the early summer Deformed Conscience toured all of the US and recorded our split LP with Excrement Of War. I was planning a three month trip to Europe that fall and had plans to move to thriving punk metropolis of Minneapolis in early ’95. But a project I worked on in the late summer of that year would grow into the most active and turbulent parts of my life for the next several years.

Jay Stiles and I become penpals around 1990. I was a big fan of Disrupt and when my first band Deformed Conscience started gigging soon after, Jay was always supportive. We got to play many gigs together over the next few years. We often talked about doing a project together and after Disrupt broke up and Deformed Conscience became less active (two of our members were living away from Connecticut after the US tour). The idea was for Jay to come stay with me for a month or two in Connecticut before I went to Europe so we could write some songs and record a record. Once we got to work, we started looking around for a drummer before realizing the most obvious and willing guy was Pete Fratta who I’d be playing with for years already. He was busy with Hail Of Rage at the time, but it all worked out in the end. We recorded our EP at the Lanes Studio in Boston with the infamous Bill T. Miller in October. Jay went back to Massachusetts and I went to Europe. A friend from the UK had offered to release ep, but the plan fell through, so we had to find another label to release it. After shopping it around to the everyone we knew, no one shoved any incentive to release it, so Pete started his own DIY label Reiterate Records and SOF ep was his first release. 

1995 was equally busy year for me, after returning from Europe I stuck to the plan and moved to Minneapolis. I was eager to start new band but still had those SOF songs rolling around in my head and got thinking that would be the best thing I could do to make SOF a real band and go on the road. After not much convincing, Jay packed up and headed up to Minneapolis. It was amazing timing that the same day Jay arrived in Minneapolis, one of my best friends from Connecticut (who had been living in Arizona for a brief time) also arrived at my door. Bracken Lejeune and I had known each other since our school days and were like brothers, so it was natural to get him involved in State Of Fear as our second guitarist. I have been jamming with Shane from Code 13 since I got to Minneapolis on drums , so the line up was complete.

While in Europe the previous year, plans had been made with Hiatus guys to organize a second US tour for them. When booking started for June of 1995 we figured why not add SOF to the tour? We had to work our asses off to write enough songs and covers for the tour (I don’t remember exactly what covers we learned for that first tour, but over the years they included songs by Crudity, Mob47, Discharge, Varukers, Amebix and Instigators). That tour was huge success in terms of making friends and playing in new places. Hiatus started their tour in Montreal, Quebec and through an interested turn of events got Frederic Arbour from the band Human Greed to be their roadie for the rest of the tour. Jay and I had known Fred from our previous bands playing in Montreal , and we bonded further on this tour with Hiatus. When things turned volatile with Shane we started asking Fred to move to Minneapolis and join us as our drummer.

Once Fred joined us, we kept this line up for the next year and half until we split up. The first thing we did with this line up was record our second ep “Wallow in Squalor” on Profane Existence and had the vinyl released two weeks after recording (thanks to Dan at PE) in time for our second tour with Fleas and Lice (which also brought us back to eastern US and Montreal ). In the winter 1996 we left the frigid tundra of Minnesota to do a tour of Mexico. That tour was difficult in many ways (financial, mechanical, language barriers etc.) but the guys from Regeneracion took good care of us and it is an experience I will never forget. In the summer of 1996 we did another eastern US/Canada tour, this time as three piece without Jay (tensions were already starting to bubble up). Jay met us out in Boston though so we could record again with our old and trusted engineer Bill T. Miller. This would be our LP “The Tables Will Turn”. Unfortunately we could not finish the recording and mix with Bill because I had blown out my voice after doing both mine and Jay’s parts for the whole tour (I’m sure the copious amounts of tobacco and alcohol didn’t help either). That sounds hard to conceive, considering the style of vocals I was doing, but trust me, there was nothing there, ha ha. A few months later we found a studio in Minneapolis where we finished the recording and mixed the record.

After the LP was released in early 1997 (also on Profane Existence), we headed over to Europe for massive three months tour. We did the tour in logs with some small breaks between. The first part was in central Europe with Hiatus, then a log with PCP in central Europe and Scandinavia, then to the UK and Ireland with Sawn Off. The final part of the tour we did by train in eastern Europe with the help of some good friends from Poland. Overall, the Europe tour was about 50 gigs, most of them brilliant, but some of them were bad because the tensions in the band were mounting further at this point. After this tour, Fred did not return to Minneapolis and this line up of State Of Fear would never play together again. Remaining members tried to rekindle it, but the friction was too great and we decided to focus on new projects. 

They say that time heals or maybe we just missed the madness of State Of Fear but in early 2001 we decided to do a reunion. Jon Hurt become our drummer for this tour and his enthusiasm breathed a new life into the band. Another reason for the tour was that we had never toured the western US before and felt it was something we wanted to do. We were joined by our Seattle friends Shitlist (led by another childhood friend of Brocken and I, Joe Rizzi). We has some amazing gigs on that tour and some great experiences with old and new friends on the road.

The last gigs SOF did was a one of reunion in Minneapolis in 2004 and the Pointless Fest in Philadelphia in 2005. Since then we’ve turned down several “reunion” gigs. While tempting, is hasn’t felt right living in the past and overall we would rather focus on what we’re currently inspired to do. SOF was one of the best experiences in my life. I got to met many good friends, travel to amazing places and be part of something much bigger than ourselves. Thanks to all who supported us back then and to those who remember us today. This is just my version and recollections. There are so many more stories from those days.

John Krupa, 2022


axegrinder said...

trebaš lp :)?

super post usput.

..crucified freedom.. said...

haha, možda, ovisi..

tenks, mada je samo prepisano, znači minimalan trud uložen s moje strane, al dobra je priča, a rado bi pročital da postoji i detaljnija verzija..