Urine Nation T-Shirts
October 1992, Mark Moroni (Ro) and Andrew Ziola (Z) took a road trip
down to the University of Illinois in Champaign. After a tour
of the campus and a tour of many of the famous watering holes down in
illini-land, Mark and Andrew came up with the random idea to start a
punk band. The remainder of the weekend was filled with endless
conversation about the first song we'd write, at the time we wanted
to make a song called "Boog on Your Shoe." By the way,
we never wrote that song.
The funny part about this crazy idea was that neither of us knew the first
thing about playing any instrument, oh I did play the saxophone for a
month in the fourth grade, and neither of us actually owned a guitar.
That wouldn't stop our new found dream.
Returning to beautiful Lisle, IL, and Benet Academy the following Monday
morning, Z and Ro continued to talk up this crazy idea with our buddies
that hung out by the couches near the Writer's Workbench. The cool
kids hung out by cafeteria. We weren't cool, yet.
We made plans to meet after school in Z's parent's garage. Our old
buddy, Paul Cherian, had taken up drums a few months prior. Sean
O'Brien, Doby, showed up with his old garage sale guitar and ten watt
amp, Ro came by with a bass and bass amp that his aunt gave to him, It
was from the 1960's or something crazy.
So, Pavil on drums, Roman on the guitar, Z on the bass, and Doby on the
10$ Radio Shack mike. We started to jam. It sounded pitiful,
but we made a sad attempt at playing 3 chords while Doby wailed out
some actually pretty cool vocals. The first song we played over
and over again was Z's lyrics for "Infatuation."
It was cheesy as fuck, but kinda punk.
The craziest thing was how awesome Doby was at singing from day one -
he was the best part of the band his voice was so unique - we were surprised
because he had such a scratchy voice, but singing, he sounded totally
The next day we invited Todd to practice. Todd actually knew more
than we did about making music and shit - not much. No, we all were
pretty clueless about playing instruments, let alone making music, but
Todd was the missing link. Urine Nation was complete, and ready
to tackle the world, or at least the western suburbs.
Later that first week in the saga, we moved practice to Todd's house.
Todd's dad actually had recording studio in their house, so the big-time
band that we were, we decided it was time to move into a better practice
space. Who were we crapping? We were on cloud nine in the
studio. The music was no better. It was louder at least. The
studio was cool because we were actually using some decent equipment and
not garage sale crap. But we had a lot of practicing to do.
We really were trying to teach ourselves how to play these fricking instruments.
The real goal of the band was to make our high-school's (Benet) Battle
of the Band contest. Since we started the band in Oct. 1992, we
had until around March or April until tryouts and the Battle. But
we had our work cut out for us.
We practiced about 3 times a week on average. We moved back to Z's
garage, but as dumb as Z's parents are, his parents wouldn't let us practice
in their beautiful facility under the name Urine Nation. So we temporarily
changed the name of the band to High Men, get it? Like the
private part of a woman, and doped up boys . . .
Ohh by the way, we had a list of rotation who would drive Doby home because
he never got his driver's license. No one ever wanted to drive him.
After a while we said enough with Z's garage and we moved to the warmth
of Roman's garage, Roman's basement, Pavil's garage, and wherever else
parents wouldn't bother us with their bitching about the noise - not that
we were too loud, but that we sucked.
That's about the best I can do for now as for our beginnings. The
rest is music history.
No, we made the Battle of the Bands, and came in second, losing to Craig
Helmreichs shitty cover band. We had to use the name Pavil, in honor
of the best punk drummer of all time, ohh and because our piece of feces
school wouldn't let us use the name Urine Nation. Go figure, the
other bands in the contest were 200 Proof (alcohol), Splief (reefer),
and Anonymous (a metal band). But they wouldn't let us use the name
that they have taught us about in Biology.
We recorded 2 or 3 times on a four tack with Eric Butkis.
We played some shitty shows in the suburbs and parties.
We played one song at a Smoking Popes/Friction show
We played with Cap N Jazz.
15 has our tape.
Thanks for the memories.
Urination rids the body of unwanted waste. We live in a Urine Nation.
(Andrew Ziola, 1998)