COACH CAMPA “If You’ve Got the Hammer” (Already Dead)


I’m a coach as well, just of U10 soccer players. They can get pretty rowdy I guess, but they listen pretty good. They learn, they get better. They play fair. Isn’t that all that matters in the end?
Coach (Ethan) Campa is a different kind of coach altogether. I’m not sure he has a patient approach, or even one that appreciates the learning process. It’s “Get it right or get out!” with that guy. He also plays drums, so he’s constantly hitting something, which isn’t something you can do with U10 soccer players. They frown upon that. But Coach Campa is still a leader, somebody who has to wrangle his “team” for a singular vision. And that singular vision is blistering noise-rock-core-punk, four descriptions of music that I smooshed together with bubble gum and hyphens. They’re kind of lazy, but so what. I do understand that I would be kicked out of Coach Campa’s program with that attitude, but here we are.
Coach Campa’s team consists of other members of his band, and we get bass, guitar, ukulele (!), and trumpet along with Campa’s battering of the kit. If You’ve Got the Hammer is a heavy ride through a barrage of mathematically precise instrumentation, speakers blown out by heavy distortion, octopus drumming threatening to bring the whole scaffolding down upon everyone’s heads. But enough wild instrumentation peeks through the rhythmic onslaught to anchor the freeform freakout of Campa’s virtuosity. Hey, it’s Campa’s band – Campa can do whatever he wants. And his ship is the tightest-run ship you can imagine. Just like my soccer team!