Broken Talent: Rules No One 12"

Florida's Dying Records


"Broken Talent were kind of like Miami's Flipper. They were noisy, abrasive, and were the non-conformists in a punk scene that prided itself on its non-conformity. They were hated, often booed off the stage, they looked like burnouts, and they were my favorite band growing up, hands down. Broken Talent and T.P.O.S. (bassist Malcolm Tent's label) really created a parallel punk scene in Miami. T.P.O.S. released many great tape comps with some very strange and incredible music. They had their own aesthetic with Broken Talent's frontman, Santo providing his twisted Ralph Steadman-meets-Nick Blinko-drawings. They set up shows and did fanzines and comics. They didn't wait for people to come to them, they made their own scene. To me, at 14, they were more than a band, they were like mentors. I took every opportunity to pick their brains and they were always ready to talk to me about whatever, even though I was a pushy, overbearing, hyperactive kid. It was the band's bassist Malcolm Tent who would turn me on to Hellhammer's Apocalyptic Raids album. They decried racism, organized religion, and society with snarky humor and intelligence rarely seen in a politically-minded punk band." -Aesop

Our take: Collection LP from this early 80s punk band out of Florida. Judging by the liner notes, Broken Talent seem like one of those bands that kind of formed in isolation, and hence developed a very unique sound. Unlike places like DC or Boston where there were clear scene leaders and, consequently, a kind of "house style," Florida (particularly South Florida, from where Broken Talent hailed) seems like something of an aesthetic wasteland, and without any real pattern to follow the bands seemed to make it up as they went along, which seems to be the case with Broken Talent. I mean, Flipper does seem like an extremely obvious reference point, particularly on tracks like "Get Off the Stage," but really this is just the sound of a bunch of mutants doing their best to make something new, nasty, and compelling. I mean, no one is going to claim that this is some lost holy grail of punk, but if you love hearing how punk was slightly different in every place that it managed to pop up (which seems to have been pretty much everywhere), then this is quite an enjoyable little listen.
Tags: 80s hardcore noisy punk reissues ushc