The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Hidden Tracks: Exploding thumbnails


Everybody needs some sort of release from the stress of the real world. Some paint, some do drugs, some watch movies and some even bottle it all up until they turn into Michael Douglas’s character from “Falling Down.” I suppose that last one isn’t much of a release at all.

My chosen form of catharsis is drumming. It’s loud. It’s violent. It’s exhausting. It’s sometimes painful.

Many drummers seek sponsorship from companies that make sticks or cymbals or drums, but I could really use a bandage deal.

I remember flipping through issues of Thrasher magazine and seeing the “Hall of Meat” section that featured the worst of the worst skateboarding injuries.

“God damn,” we’d say.

“So gross,” we’d say.

I quit skateboarding in middle school because I had a nasty hand injury and I was starting to take percussion a little more seriously. How could I play music with broken hands?

Fast forward to just a few months ago to when my thumbnail exploded and nearly poked out my eyeball within days of each other. I stopped one activity due to risk of injury, only for my release to morph my hands into calloused, bloody messes.

It’s not that it’s intentional, either. These scabs and bruises are just a side effect of wanting to make loud noise. Not even a million exploding thumb nails would keep me from my release.

My list for this entry is something musicians and non-musicians would appreciate. These are the five best bands to play air instruments to while stuck in traffic:

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I love this band for their tasty guitar harmonies. It may or may not be a reflex of mine to put on my most ridiculous guitar solo face whenever I hear this band.


So many great bands come from Canada. It’s a real shame that Nickelback’s overproduced swill gets all the attention of younger rock fans. Rush’s Neil Peart is a monster drummer. Listen to “Tom Sawyer” and air drum to your heart’s content.


Converge drummer Ben Koller could break both arms and still play circles around most. Every release since 2001’s “Jane Doe” has had the stink of Koller’s frantic drumming. Not only do I play along on my steering wheel to every Converge song I hear, I want to do so using my skull.


Louisville’s Coliseum is the most frightening power trio ever. Crust-tinged thrash metal with an abundance of fast, classic rock-esque riffs make for great air guitar, bass or drums … and driving really fast.


Propaghandi are another amazing Canadian band. Their latest record, “Supporting Caste,” was a runner-up for my list of 2009’s best music. Punks and metalheads alike can bang heads and steering wheels to this band.

Check out to listen to some select tracks from these bands!

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