Ism was formed in Bayside Queens, NYC in 1980. The band was created as a concept by lead man Jism and manager/producer Bob Sallese. The first single was recorded in the same year with Jism and an early line-up of the band. The 45, "Attack" b/w Queen J.A.P." was released
on their S.I.N. Records label. It wasn't until late '81 & early '82 that it began to get commercial airplay and reviews but was banned shortly thereafter despite positive audience response. Management at several radio stations determined "Queen J.A.P." to be offensive.
Ism broke into full fledged commercial airplay in 1982 with "John Hinckley Jr. (What has Jodie Foster Done To You?)" & "Moon The Moonies" which was released by Sallese & Jism on "The Big Apple Rotten To The Core" compilation on S.I.N Records. "John Hinckley Jr" became the first hardcore song to get commercial airplay in the NY metropolitan area and was nominated for WLIR's "Screamer of the Week" award for two weeks straight. The popularity of "The Big Apple" compilation prompted WLIR's Ben Manilla to do a weekly hour long punk & hardcore show which was the first of it's kind to be broadcast commercially in New York.
After a few initial changes in the line-up, the band became established as Jism, lead singer & keyboards, Mark Reres, guitars, Steve Scianablo, bass and Larry Ray, drums...all from Queens, NYC.
Their success was followed up with their hardcore punk rendition of the Partridge Family's "I Think I Love You" (1983) single backed with "A7" (a tribute to the notorious after hours punk club in NYC where Jism & Sallese hung out). The record became the #6 single in the country on CMJ's New Music composite. It too was nominated for WLIR's "Screamer of The Week" award in New York. Ism's "A Diet For The Worms" LP, also released in 1983, shot to #65 on Progressive Radio's Top 100 Charts. Both recordings were released on the S.I.N. Records label and produced by Jism and Sallese. Both records were banned by major record outlets because of, what was considered at the time to be, outrageous lyrics and album artwork.
In 1984, Broken Records released the "Constantinople" EP with former Anthrax drummer Greg D'Angelo replacing Larry Ray.
In 1987 Raw Power Records released 2 songs on "The Big Apple Rotten To The Core Vol. 2" & a "Nightmare At Noon" EP after which Larry Ray rejoined the band. Jism & Sallese produced Omer Travers (infamous for breaking into Yoko Ono's apt.) for the "The Big Apple" vol 2 and Jism was invited onto "The Howard Stern Show" to promote the album.
An unauthorized album, "I Think I Love You The Hits That Missed 1982-1989" was released in 1990.
In 1996, Ism, together with Tiny Tim, recorded a never officially released music video of "TipToe Through The Tulips". The song was also included on the 1996 release "Journey Down Your Drain" on No Label Recordings. Dave Miranda of Six and Violence joined in on drums as Larry Ray had left the band again. It was released in limited quantities and for promotional purposes only before the group disbanded due to personal issues.
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