While many of the bands on B.Y.O Records' 1984 compilation Something to Believe In stuck to the loud, fast fundamentals of hardcore, other bands, like Channel 3, revealed cracks in the punk underground's foundation. Songs like the Nils' heartbreakingly beautiful "Scratches and Needles" and Channel 3's soaring, sorrowful, "Indian Summer" showed a great restlessness with the strictures of hardcore. So it came to pass that 1984, the year of Reagen's dispiriting landslide re-election, marked the splintering of the hardcore underground and it's network of bands, fanzines, labels. People grew out their hair and tastes shifted towards speed-metal or jangly-pop. Such changes happen to every wave of punk but the ideas of punk rock are a contagion and not dependent on any one person carrying them; those ideas simply mutate and spread elsewhere.
Channel 3's "Indian Summer" did succeed in harnessing the angry energy of punk rock to different ends. While Black Flag dug into British sludge-metal to re-invent themselves, Channel 3 dug into California folk-rock, like their contemporaries the Red Rockers (as well as R.E.M. and the whole of L.A.'s Paisley Underground) did. The resulting sound is the mid-way point between the Clash's "Gates of the West" and Big Country's "Field of Fire". Lyrically, Magrann combines the eighties angst touchstones of nuclear fear and adolescent alienation ("I just wanna know how to live...in the Indian summer") quite deftly. Magrann puts those words to a stirring melody, with ringing (occasionally bag-pipish) guitars and some heartfelt Springteen-isms. It''s not only a neglected classic but also one good answer to the question, "What happens to punks when they grow up?"
Chanel 3 - Indian Summer (Something to Believe In version)
Download Indian Summer 7"