To understand the ultra-hardworking punk musician Ian Shelton, compare his two bands: Regional Justice Center and Militarie Gun.
Regional Justice Center is more abrasive by far: a blur of grind riffs and blast beats, with Shelton — who screams and drums — working through his emotions stemming from his separation from his currently incarcerated brother.
Militarie Gun, where Shelton simply has the mic, is no less intense. But it represents a different facet of Shelton, one turned to catch a little more light.
In the newest episode of Press Play At Home, watch the band — Shelton, guitarists Nick Cogan and William Acuña, bassist Max Epstein, and drummer Vince Ngyuen — rip into "Big Disappointment," a highlight from their most recent EP, All Roads Lead to the Gun II, which dropped June 4 on Alternatives Label.
Therein, Shelton displays his chops as a visual thinker — making music videos is his occasional day job, after all — as the band performs a high-octane rendition of "Big Disappointment."
Read More: "A Joyful Burden": How Ian Shelton Of Militarie Gun & Regional Justice Center Makes Art Out Of Negativity
While the video evokes some of Shelton's poppier influences — he counts the Beatles and Guided by Voices as two of his favorite bands — Militarie Gun's true strength is in how they engage the heart and the head simultaneously.
While their sound and energy may make you want to break things, the essence of Militarie Gun is construction, not destruction. The soul of the band is Shelton's relentless, creative drive — the invisible gun to one's head that drives self-expression and personal achievement.
Check out Militarie Gun's pummeling performance of "Big Disappointment" above and enjoy more episodes of Press Play At Home below.
Every Moment Flame On: A Guide To The Expanded Universe Of Robert Pollard & Guided By Voices