Ring their bell

The Bump-n-Uglies are smack in the middle of their set, playing in front of a sold-out crowd at Detroit’s St. Andrews Hall, when they abruptly halt their orgy of three-chord drunkenness and turn their full attention toward a masked autograph hound. This magnanimous act of appreciation turns quickly tragic, however, as the disguised assailant proceeds to clobber all four unsuspecting band members with a folding chair, busting open singer-guitarist "Playboy" Bubba Mackenzie and drummer "Dr. Dynamic" Josh Movado.

Revealing himself to the shocked audience as the Uglies’ archnemesis, Inferno, the unmasked attacker continues his destruction, pile-driving guitarist Amado "The Natural" Movado before moving on to his next victim, bassist Rob Rossetti. Knocking "The Italian Saint" unconscious with a stunner, Inferno further humiliates him by butchering his hair with a pair of scissors and throwing bits of his mane into the audience.

Meanwhile, Bubba regains his strength and exacts revenge on Inferno by smacking him with a 30-pound baseball bat wrapped in barbed wire. Stunning their opponent, the Movados take action by placing the weary antagonist on a folding table as Dr. Josh takes his place on the top guitar amp. The helpless Inferno soon becomes another victim of the Doctor’s finishing move, the "Dynamic 265 Star Frog Splash." Scoring the 1 ... 2 ... 3 count, the audience roars as the victorious Bump-n-Uglies celebrate by closing out their set with a sleazy rendition of AC / DC’s "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap," as the defeated Inferno is dragged off-stage.

Detroit’s Bump-n-Uglies formed in 1995, adopting their wrestling stage personae and theatrics in 1996. But the Uglies’ wrestling isn’t mere theatrics. These guys were raised on pro wrestling (of the WWF variety) and their love of the squared circle naturally made its way into their brand of punk rock. And they’ve gotten just a little tired of accusations that the action’s rigged and the copious amounts of blood spilled during their shows is fake.

"The sound of a chair smashing into someone’s face (and) crushing their skull is real," defends front man Mackenzie. "We’ve never in our history used tricked-out tables, trick chairs or fake blood."

And they have the medical records to prove it.

On top of multiple documents detailing concussions, blown-out knees, separated shoulders and other scarring physical tolls – "Rossetti took five staples to the head," Mackenzie adds – the Bump-n-Uglies offer an open invite to all nonbelievers: "Anybody that doubts," Mackenzie nods, "can come down backstage after the show and look at the evidence."

Along with a three-and-a-half year reign atop the Detroit Rock and Wrestling League (of which the Uglies are the only members, but, then again, it’s a self-proclaimed title), all four members also work to earn the (also self-proclaimed) title of "the most beautiful band to ever grace the stage."

"For most people, beauty is only skin deep," smirks Rossetti, "but surely that is not the case with us."

"We go the extra length to maintain our devourness, our handsomeness," says Mackenzie. "Sure, there are times after a show when we don’t look so beautiful. But even scarred, bruised, beaten and battered, we’re always handsome ..."

"And we’re always ready for the photo shoot," exclaims Josh Movado.

The aforementioned physical sacrifice is an important aspect of the Bump-n-Uglies’ live package. But of equal importance is the rock that remains at a punked-out pace and accelerated crudeness throughout their live shows – no matter how much damage has been or is being inflicted upon the band and its foes. Captured on their upcoming full-length, The Finer Things in Life, the band’s combined atonement of "blood, sweat and pure emotion" with a "very strict diet of Courvoisier cognac" keeps these champs in top punk ‘n’ roll shape.

"We’ve worked hard and we just want to make everybody have a good time," says Mackenzie, "and that’s all there is to it."

"Make no mistake about it," announces Josh Movado. "From pillar to post, you will be entertained! From the beginning, when you hear the crowd cheering and you hear the loud bass noise and you hear the Bump-n-Uglies and the 1 ... 2 ... 3! You can be guaranteed that everyone in the arena or venue will be thoroughly, 100 percent entertained, 100 percent of the time!" Mike DaRonco isn’t afraid to step into the squared circle. Are you? Send comments to [email protected]

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