Photography, thoughts, etc by NYC based punk nerd Kate Hoos.
Saturday, February 17, 2018
Decision @ Heck 2.3.18
I've been a busy punk this past month or so, thusly the blog has taken a bit of a back seat. I have been shooting a lot, some live shows and some portrait sessions as well as personal work. Oh and tons of street art, but that's every day for me haha (you can see that on my Instagram. Maybe one day I'll do a blog post for more of it tho cuz I take TONS of street art pics, way more than I ever post!) I've just keeping myself busy and continuing to push myself and work past the rut I was feeling late in 2017. I'll prob do some "odds & ends" posts to get up some of the shows I've done recently that I just haven't had time to post from as well and maybe even some of the portraits and such too, we shall see! As always, if you're interested in collabing, holler at me if you wanna hire me to shoot, I'd love to work with you on a project!
Anyway, this show was at HECK, a DIY house/basement venue in BK. It had a rad vibe and was a really intense show, bordering on chaos (in a good way) by time it wrapped up. There is nothing I love more than a frenzied house show cuz I really love feeding off of the energy/being on the floor w the bands and audience at the same time. They sometimes aren't the easiest to shoot in that I'm constantly moving/usually dodging people haha but it makes it all the better when I'm landing shots I feel excited about so I'd prefer them most of the time to just standing there leisurely snapping away hahaha. Anyway, all of these bands are so worth your time/ears/money so please go out and support them and any/all DIY venues to keep this underground community and culture alive in this increasingly fucked up toxic world we live in. Alright onward to the pics.....
To see the pics larger (and sharper) or to scroll through more easily, click on any pics and use your arrow keys
Fealty kicked things off for the night; they are a band I have been listening to a lot lately and you should do the same! I love the fierce dual back and forth vocals and their fuzzy sound. At this show there was only one mic so it made for an interesting time for them with the dual vocals haha but they seemed to manage okay. They played a Punk Island benefit back in January too so those are the few black and whites I tacked on here too haha. Their next show is 3/9 also at Heck (ask a punk for the address btw) you should be there! I just found out I have to work that night so please go in my place haha.
Decisions was up next and HOLY.FUCKING.SHIT. the crowd was in a non-stop frenzy from start to finish. Their set was fiery and sooooo good. I hadn't heard of this band before seeing their name on the event page so I went to give them a listen and was blown away by their demo. It is a lo-fi, fuzzy punk gem and one of my favorite things I have discovered lately, I seriously can't stop listening to it. Shooting them was so much fun though I couldn't really get in front of them because of the surging crowd (not feeling like getting myself or my camera mashed up) but I still feel good about what I did get from the sides, def not complaining there!
I'm not sure when they're playing again, they don't appear to have social media, but I'm keeping an eye on their Bandcamp to see if anything pops up because I def would love to see them again.
Septic Rot ended the night and shit really got to a frenzied state by time their set was done. It was my first time seeing them, they are def HEAVY and grindy/thrashy which is admittedly outside of what I usually listen to so I'm not super familiar with the genre as a whole haha. But you know me, always happy to check new shit out. They played a blistering set and did not disappoint my un-initiated ears at all haha. I am looking forward to seeing them again, and their demo is fucking ace, so you should def get on giving it a listen.
(and some punk trivia haha they also happen to share a member with Ellen & the Degenerates)
That's all folks!
All photos copyright Kate Hoos. If you use these for social media, cool, but give me a credit plz and a link. For all other uses, or hi-res versions of any of these photos for print use, etc or if you need a photog for an event or band portraits, drop me a line for info/rates.
If you like my stuff/have used it and wanna make a donation you can HERE. It is much appreciated and helps keep my nerdy punk ass keep going with this shit.
Tuesday, January 9, 2018
Sister Munch is the band I photographed the most in 2017, I went to a lot of their hometown shows and also toured with them out to the midwest which obviously, was friggen one of the best things I did in 2017. They are good friends and I love them, plus they are a damn good band that never disappoints when I see them. These are the pics from their last show of the year a few weeks back, which was also the release show for their new EP "Death Breath" which you can check it out on Spotify. Or better yet, DL it from their Bandcamp before 1/16/18 and they'll donate the proceeds to New Alternatives an organization dedicated to homeless LGBTQ youth in NYC. Sounds like a win win to me!
Skip this if you're not a photo nerd...
So "writer's block" for photographers is a real thing which I guess I shouldn't be surprised by but I am. I say that because I've never experienced it before but the past like 2 months or so I've been shooting quite a lot actually, but feel really blocked none-the-less, which is why I have not updated this at all. I've just felt everything I've been doing hasn't been up to par so I've put myself in a rut. I know intellectually that that is not true, that my work is not shit, but emotionally it does feel true (I get really emotional about my work both as a photographer and when I do mixed media stuff haha #emo)
I overthink it all and then want to scrap everything thinking it's not good enough. I also question my skill level and get angry at myself for taking 12 years off, a time in which software and stuff drastically changed so I'm still playing catchup and frustrated by things I don't yet have mastered. But I have been doing a lot of thinking and reading, so I have made some lists of exercises to work on both shooting wise and in the software realm (and started to check things off).
Most of the shooting exercises not related to music photography btw because I think that will help me more in the long run because especially the last year or so, I've tended to do mostly just live bands and I'm not exploring anything else as much as I should be which isn't helping my predicament I'm sure. I absolutely LOVE being at a show with a camera, I always have and always will, but I need to be working on other things too. It's been too long since I have concentrated on random things or abstract work, setting up table tops at home with objects and such and I really miss that.
All artists go through this no matter what our chosen medium is and work through it as well so I'm sure I will too. My friends etc have been supportive and reassuring which is good. I've been getting hired for some things (hire me more people, hire me more!) too which obviously is a good thing. I just need to do what I love, shoot as much as I can and never stop pushing for better. When I was in college I barely ever put my camera down and that's what I think I need now.
This block is why I have yet to have a more formal website. This is better than nothing and it'll do for now but I am going to get out of this rut, stop wasting time, and get to it. So stay tuned!
I have been seriously all about black and white lately which will be obvious once you take a look at the pics haha. I have been thinking a lot back to the black and white epic punk albums/photo spreads within them which opened my eyes to a whole other world out there. I loved getting new records/cds back in the 90s because it was sometimes my only look at these bands cuz it was years before social media and most magazines didn't cover what I wanted to read about (why I started writing zines and taking pics myself in the first place) So I really think I've been feeling a real b/w vibe lately to kind of mirror that aesthetically of the classic heyday of punk and hardcore in the 80s into the 90s.
I saw the documentary Turn It Around: The Story of East Bay Punk a few months ago and thru that also discovered the early work of Murray Bowles and he really captured some remarkable images from the early days of 924 Gilman including Operation Ivy and very, very early Green Day. The rawness of Glen E. Friedman too (I have loved him for many years though I do know he uses/used both color and b/w) That spirit I think has been hanging out with me as I approach shooting shows lately which is cool.
To see the pics larger (and sharper) or to scroll through more easily, click on any pics and use your arrow keys.
Necrotic Society is a band I am really growing to love shooting, and I obviously love their music (we share a rehearsal space as well, keep it in the punk family!) Though I'm still working on capturing their drummer JR. Some drummers I have good luck with, others not so much haha. She has proven to be elusive thus far, but I most definitely WILL get that shot! That chase is what I live for afterall ;)
WWIX was up next and talk about a great band to photograph. These guys are so much fun and are pretty much some of the most irreverent punx out there which is a nice change sometimes when the world feels like it's going to fucking shit. They make my life so easy when I'm shooting, though then I have a harder time reigning myself in during the edit! Such is life. Anyway, I can't get enough of their shows and def hope to get to play with them finally in 2018. They've got a bunch of music on Spotify so I suggest you grab a beer (or a Coca-Cola if you're like me) and get to blasting that shit.
The cutest punx in NYC right here people!
I've already sang Sister Munch's praises but for real. DL their music and support them when they play live. Their next show is 1/27 at The Gutter in Greenpoint so point yourselves there, you won't regret it. More info here
Stay tuned, I have a fuck ton more photos from shows that I've shot recently. Will post at least some of them and perhaps some of the portraits and rando-ness I have been doing too though those posts don't even get half the views the band ones do! Come on you punx, you can look at other shit too hahaha
All photos copyright Kate Hoos. If you use these for social media, cool, but give me a credit plz and a link. For all other uses/to inquire about purchasing hi-res versions for print usage, etc or if you want to book a shoot with me for an event or promo photos, drop me a line for info/rates.
If you like what you see, or have perhaps posted my stuff in the past on your social media accounts, and want to support, you can click HERE to throw some dollars in my hat to help me keep going. Every bit helps and is much appreciated! (btw it's listed under my "real" name for some reason, but it's def me)
Friday, November 17, 2017
This show was a few weeks back on 10/24 at Alphaville. It was a little punk oasis in a week that was crazy for me prepping for the cover show I hosted/played on 10/28 and getting ready to leave for a 3 week tour immediately afterwards, where I still am. In the back of a tour van that is haha. As it turns out, finding time and an easy place to edit pics on the road, and WiFi access to post things isn't an easy task so it took me a bit. It was making me anxious to get these out in the world because I was pretty stoked about them and all of these bands so here they finally are! Lots of rad bands and pals on this show, you should check all of these bands out and add em to your playlists if you know what's good for ya!
Skip this next part if you're not a photo/gear nerd like me.....
I've been shooting shows lately 50/50 long exposure and sans flash or something close to that ratio haha. I will always prefer long exposure with tight grain/sharper depth of field, but want to get a better feel for shooting with a wide open aperture with ambient light cuz it is a bit of a different process and you get very different results. You definitely need to read the room/space differently and adapt to the light you have to work with in a different way so I've been practicing as much as I can. I shot this show entirely with my 50mm lens as well which was a change up for me. I usually use a wider angle zoom lens but wanted to test it out with a prime lens for a change. I'd like to get a wider prime lens because the 50 was a bit tighter than I wanted at times, but I still feel good about the shots I got. In my film days, I used prime lenses for medium and large format but tended to favor zooms for small format and it's been nice pushing myself a bit more only sticking to one focal length.
For the long exposure shots, I also tried the pop-up flash as opposed to my speedlight....the speedlight does diffuse the light waaaay better but it can be bulky and makes it an extra step to deal with switching back and forth from flash/not flash and with batteries which generally is a pain. For small DIY venues like this, the pop up does work well and helps me move/react faster. The space isn't big enough to swallow up the light it's throwing either. Plus my autofocus system + the speedlight reacts slower too which SUCKS...I'm working on a solution for that but it might require an expensive new speedlight ugh. And yes purists, I use autofocus hahaha my eyes are too bad anymore and more so in low light. I paid my dues shooting shows with an all manual 35mm camera for years where the only bell or whistle I had was a light meter so I feel fine about it hahaha.
On the current tour I've been on I've been starting to experiment with using my iPhone more which....for a while I was like HELL NO but I'm def seeing that might have been a wrong assessment and am changing my tune....more on that maybe in a later post....
Okay onward to the pics! I just want to say I'm a little obsessed with the purple/blue/magenta lights in these pics and really am looking forward to getting back to Alphaville to shoot more shows (it was my first time there)
To see the pics larger (and sharper) or to scroll through more easily, click on any pics and use your arrow keys.
Electro Insides kicked off the night and I was really excited to see them. A little backstory....anyone who organizes a lot of shows can get stuck a bit in a loop of booking the same people a lot and I had definitely found myself in that place in late 2016, so earlier this year I went on a search for new bands I hadn't heard yet which also served as a scouting mission of sorts for new talent for Punk Island. I did this by going through show flyers for bands I did already know and writing down a list of about 50-60 bands that I had never heard of. I went through the whole list (I really did!) and listened to all of them. Some were eh and some sucked haha some were good and some I just really liked a lot. Electro Insides was one of the ones I really dug a ton. I downloaded their music and then immediately contacted them to play a PI benefit. I didn't hear back from them (which I later found out was cuz their email was locked or something and no one saw my message) which was a bummer and I missed a few shows they were playing because of other shit going on or finding out too late.
Flash ahead to about 6 months later I met their bassist Vanessa speaking on a panel of women in music. I, of course, gushed about how much I loved the band, said I'd def make sure to make it a priority to get out to a show and that they should def submit to Punk Island because I was very interested in having them be a part of the fest. Then this show came up and I was like FINALLY! They put on a great and energetic show and I was so glad to have finally seen them....then I learned that was their last show! I was bummed by that and that they won't be making new music, but that's the way it goes sometimes haha life and shit. But I am really glad I didn't miss this and I was able to get some pics of them. They have 3 EPs on Bandcamp which you can get right HERE and I highly recommend you get on that!
Sister Munch is a band I have shot A LOT in the last year and even toured with, but it still doesn't get old for me cuz I love them! It's a treat as a photographer really getting to know a band's moves and their visual style which is helpful when I'm working with different gear and practicing techniques I am not as comfortable with, which as I mentioned before that I've been trying to do lately. They debuted a bunch of new songs which are fucking KILLER and will be on their upcoming EP "Death Breath" [release show 12/16 at Muchmore's info HERE you know I'll be there with camera in hand hahaha I like shooting at Muchmore's aside from am stoked for the bands playing too, duh] In the meantime, you should head to their Bandcamp and pre-game with their 2 other EPs, you won't be sorry
Nihiloceros were fresh off of a tour up through New England to Canada but they still had a ton of energy at the show. I have seen them before but had yet to get pics of them; they are a music photographers dream, really energetic and fun on stage. Their singer Mike is always out at shows and taking pics of bands too, you can tell he really loves and supports the scene (he got some rad shots of Lady Biz at Punk Island this year, thanks Mike!) which makes me like them even more cuz while there are tons of bands out there, not as many as you would think truly love and support tons of bands besides their own (ugh) so these guys are a breath of fresh air. They have brand new EP that just came out so you should point your internet right at it and take a listen!
CUTTERS closed out the night and are a band that is soooo intense live. 110% every time I've seen them, they are a joy to watch and photograph. I just love their bio on FB too, it's so damn true:
Survival is hard. You’ve got to do something to survive.
CUTTERS was born out of that idea. The idea that you’re more than the chunks of you that life poisons. The idea that the only way to reclaim some small semblance of yourself is to actually
d o s o m e t h i n g.
Because we want to survive.
It’s why we pack ourselves into vans and travel to strangers basements. It’s why we spend our last few dollars on someone else rather than ourselves. Punk rock is about caring, for other people, other places, other spaces and every road in between because we’re all in it for the same damn thing. We’re all longing for a sense of belonging. A reminder that we aren’t alone. We’re all just trying not to die.
So come on.
Get up. Get out. Get psyched.
There’s a basement waiting.
You might fall in love tonight.
All photos copyright Kate Hoos. If you use these for social media, cool, but give me a credit plz and a link. For all other uses, or hi-res versions of any of these photos for print usage, etc or if you need a photo for an event or band portraits, drop me a line for info/rates.
Like what you see? Or you're in a band who has used my stuff on social media, etc? Wanna support?
You can click HERE to throw some dollars in my hat and help me keep going, every bit helps and is much appreciated! [it's under my "real" name, but it's me haha]