Circle Jerks emerged from the punk underbelly of LA’s South Bay in 1979. First conceptualized at “The Church” of Hermosa Beach, the once infamous hangout of scene forefathers Black Flag, Descendents, Redd Kross, and The Last, the band quickly became the innovators of a movement simply referred to today as HARDCORE PUNK ROCK.
After serving as a co-founder and lead vocalist of Black Flag during the recording of its essential Nervous Breakdown EP, Keith Morris joined forces with former Redd Kross guitarist Greg Hetson to form what would become Circle Jerks, a reference uncovered from artist Raymond Pettibon’s slang dictionary. Having written material for their former bands respectively, Morris and Hetson, along with bassist Roger Rogerson and jazz drummer Lucky Lehrer, fine-tuned previously unfinished material to conceive the troupe’s now-renowned sound - thoughtfully steadfast, yet relentless and ferocious in nature. Unlike much of the unapologetic hardcore that seeped through the cracks of American suburbia, the music of the Circle Jerks was dynamic, deliberate, and most importantly, a force to be reckoned with. Bringing together a potent, articulate rhythm section with earnest yet oftentimes derisive lyrics and themes, the band was thereafter heralded as a leader of the pack, but with no real plan in sight.