Pacific Swell

Southern California environment news and trends

Greencore: L.A. hardcore band It’s Casual rock out for the MTA’s Red Line

Passengers wait to board a North Hollywood-bound Red Line MTA train.
Passengers wait to board a North Hollywood-bound Red Line MTA train. David McNew/Getty Images

If there’s one thing all L.A. residents know intimately, it’s traffic. Our fair city is legendary for it, but the harsh reality of getting around Los Angeles behind the wheel is often the very definition of stress. Yes, I’m speaking from experience.

Thankfully, L.A. does have a working public transportation system, the Metropolitan Transportation. Before you go in with the snarky comments about it working, trust me: it does. Try getting across town in my beloved home city of Detroit publically, and then come talk to me.

For Boyle Heights hardcore band It’s Casual, living and working in Los Angeles on the MTA is not only a way of life, but the inspiration behind the band’s new album, The New Los Angeles Part I: Through The Eyes Of A Bus Rider, scheduled for release on March 13. Adamant about sending “a green, pro-public transportation message across the globe,” the album’s first single is an aggressive anthem “The Red Line,” which eschews the virtues of hopping the bus and reminding us that indeed, “the freeways are not so nice.”

Featuring It’s Casual’s singer/songwriter Edward Solis getting off a bus in Hollywood armed with his trusty skateboard and guitar, the video (directed by photographer/Jackass affiliate Rick Kosick) seethes with the tension of being stuck on one of the city’s many thoroughfares, name-checking the 405, 210, 101 and more. Best of all, the song really rocks.

“We’ve been working at it and believing in this kind of music — which I call L.A. hardcore or L.A. skate rock — every day,” Solis says in the band’s online bio. “I don’t take it lightly. It all comes from deep within.”

Solis, who doesn’t own a car, estimates in the band’s latest press release that he’s traveled almost 88,000 miles by way of L.A’s MTA since 2004. If that’s not hardcore, I don’t know what is.

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