By mid-1986 Dain Bramage were starting to make a name for themselves in the Washington D.C. hardcore punk scene. Their two demos recorded earlier in the year were widely shared among scenesters with the band also playing as many live shows as they could to further their reputation. One of those shows was at the 9:30 Club, a legendary venue in downtown D.C. After completing soundcheck for their performance Dain Bramage drummer Grohl was approached by Reed Mullin, a fellow drummer for heavy metal band Corrosion of Conformity. C.O.C. was already a well-established band in the North East of the United States with two full-length albums under their belt. The drummer was impressed by Dain Bramage and caught Grohl somewhat by surprise when he asked if they wanted to put out an album of their own.
Mullin was friends with the owner of a Maryland independent record label, Fartblossom Enterprizes, and assured Grohl and the rest of the band that he could hook them up so they could make their album. “Flattered beyond belief” Dain Bramage booked into RK-1 Recording Studios in Crofton, Maryland to complete recording. Frontman Reuben Radding had convinced the band to use what he believed was a real professional studio, instead of their usual jaunt to Barrett Jones more homely Laundry Room Studio but upon their arrival, Radding and the rest of the band soon realized they perhaps hadn’t made the best decision. The ‘professional’ studio turned out to be nothing more than a soundproofed garage but nevertheless, they set up their gear and recording began. Just a few hours into recording on the first day the band ran into another issue - the local police turned up after noise complaints from a neighbor. That was soon followed by a power cut across the whole area, bringing the recording to a complete halt.
Power was restored by the next day, but the recording didn’t get any easier - “The next day’s dubbing/mixing session turned into an all-nighter. Little things seemed to take forever to accomplish,” explained Radding.
Engineer for the session R.L. Copeland had similar recollections - “It was probably the worst first weekend of recording I’ve ever had in my life.” He did, however, have a lot of praise for the band - “[They] were extremely organized and we quickly caught up. There wasn’t a lot of fiddling around or double-takes, it was just boom! We blazed through the songs and it was over.” He was also specifically impressed by the band’s drummer, noting that he’d never seen someone “beat the living piss out of a drumkit” the way Dave Grohl did.
Over the course of five days (or rather four and a half after the interrupted first day), ten tracks were recorded with producer Dan Kozak. A number of these songs had been demoed by the band previously, whilst others were brand new, including ‘I Scream Not Coming Down’, which producer Kozak helped with on the writing process.
Engineer Copeland also mixed the ten songs and the album saw release by Fartblossom Enterprizes on February 28th, 1987. Pressed on 12” Vinyl, it was sold across the country for $6.
In 2010 Grohl attended a 30th Anniversary show at the 9:30 club and recalled the show which gave he and Dain Bramage the opportunity to record their first proper album. “He [Reed Mullin] hooked us up with a guy who had a record label called Fart Blossom and I made my first album. So, thank you very much 9:30 club!” said Grohl.