The Obsessed: See Henry Rollins, Ian MacKaye, More Praise Wino's "Magical" Band | Revolver

The Obsessed: See Henry Rollins, Ian MacKaye, More Praise Wino's "Magical" Band

Icons recount how "no bullshit" metal crew won over D.C. hardcore scene in 1994 doc

Revolver has teamed up with The Obsessed for an exclusive Transparent Blue with Black Smoke vinyl variant of their classic album The Church Within. Quantities are extremely limited — so order yours before they're gone!

In 1994 the Obsessed unleashed The Church Within — their powerhouse third full-length and major-label debut for Columbia. Thanks to the record company's backing the Maryland-based doom crew —guitarist/singer/guru Scott "Wino" Weinrich, bassist Guy Pinhas and drummer Greg Rogers — gained much wider exposure. All of a sudden, a nation of metalheads, grunge fans and alternative kids were getting turned on to the Obsessed's signature blend of Sabbathian heavy jams, galloping rippers and speed-freak solos. But the D.C. punks already knew what was up.

"If you wanna talk about a band that really represents America's youth culture … it's people like Wino that have nothing to lose and who have no need to lie," says former Black Flag singer Henry Rollins in a promotional mini-doc released around The Church Within. "That guy's got no bullshit."

By the mid-Nineties, the Obsessed had long been a cult favorite within the members of the D.C. punk and hardcore community. Their take on punky, stoner doom transcended a lot of the rifts in the scene and their fandom was made up of a wrecking crew of OGs including Rollins, Minor Threat/Fugazi mainman Ian MacKaye and more.

"The first time I encountered Wino was in the early 80s," Rollins continues in the video. "I had just gotten off work at Häagen-Dazs… I had no hair, this was back in the days when if you had no hair and someone had long hair it meant friction. So I see this tough looking longhaired guy across the street and I gotta go across the street too. I'm like, Oh well, here comes some kind of confrontation. So I go across the street and I'm trying to walk by this guy, and he goes [in a gruff voice] 'Hey!' … And I go, Yeah? And he's looking at these buttons I have on my jacket. I think I had like a Motörhead button … and so did he. And he was like, "Hey, Motörhead!" And I'm like, "All right, "Ace of Spaces!" … don't kill me. [Laughs]"

Over 25-plus minutes the doc traces Wino's history from his 1978 band Warhorse through The Church Within — and provides a look into his pioneering work through archival live performance footage and interviews with the guitarist and his D.C. hardcore fans, as well as other underground tastemakers including Melvins' Dale Crover, L7's Jennifer Finch, Philip Anselmo, Pepper Keenan, Lee Dorrian and others.

In one particularly interesting scene MacKaye tells the story of how seeing the Obsessed open for Bad Brains helped flip his perception about Wino's crew being just another "dumb heavy metal band."

"No one does what they do," he says, "no one does what Wino does. It's his thing. Straight-up, no one else can match it … I hear other bands that sort of have similar styles … but Wino is 100 percent the real thing."

"I think he's an amazing guitar player," says Rollins, "he plays that … drinking Clorox all night long guitar … like I smoke angel dust and wound people guitar. The guy's guitar playing sounds like trouble. [Laughs] And not the band, the situation."

"Magical kind of music," says Dorrian later in the doc, adding that the "honesty and natural heaviness that comes out of that guy is kinda amazing."

Watch the full mini-doc above — and grab your own vinyl copy of The Church Within here.