Chop Shop festered in clubs like CBGB, Subway, and The Dive, clubbing audiences over the head with fearsome, fuzz-infested stomps that shred the smiles off listeners' shocked faces.
An initial December 1984 demo tape consisting of "Punish the Flesh," "Roadkill," "Uncle Head," "This Town," and "Steel Hit Collision" documented the band's earliest lineup, with founders Truck and Trash augmented by guitarist Rebecca Korbet (late of Even Worse) and drummer Steve DiBenedetto. By February 1985, Korbet and DiBenedetto had departed, replaced by guitarist Eddie Stern and drummer Matt Lipper.
Chop Shop reached its ferocious apex when the lost classic EP "Badlands" was recorded in October 1985, featuring such tunes as garishly grimy post-apocalyptic road anthem "Cruisin' the Wasteland" and morbid thrashabilly romp "Smashing Into Heaven"; it remains unreleased save for the mp3s on this site. The band split up almost immediately after its recording.
Truck briefly played drums in Burning Rome before forming the Misfits-inspired Brain Eaters, who released 1986 EP "Crimson Nights" (Brainiac Records) and placed "Ballad of Arcane" on the 1987 "Sorority Sampler" compilation album. They later morphed into glamsters Rocket Angel.
In 1995, Truck formed trash-rockers Snake Charmers, whose discography includes 7-inches "The Gorgon" (1996, Shrunken Head) and "Nuthin for You" (1999, Shrunken Head), and full-length discs "Rock N Roll Deathwish" (1999, Sonic Tone) and "Drop Dead Blues" (2000, 20 Stone Blatt Records).
Joe Truck achieved his greatest notoriety as a tattoo artist.
Andy Trash fell further under the spell of Delta blues, and went on to play bass, electric guitar, slide guitar, and lap steel in a plethora of New York blues-punk bands---Hi-Sheriffs of Blue, Love in Vein (with fellow Chop Shopper Eddie Stern), Workdogs (he appears on 1988's "Roberta"), and Hellhounds---before careers in videogaming and computer programming.
Truck and Trash together produced the 1985 recordings of The Naked and the Dead.
Eddie Stern's further interests lay in the world of yoga.
Rebecca Korbet later played in numerous Lower East Side noise-rock bands, including Missing Foundation, Pussy Galore, Big Stick, and Sloth. She drummed on King Missile's debut "Fluting on the Hump," and on several tracks on "They" (1988, Shimmy Disc), and played guitar on The Wharton Tiers Ensemble's "Brighter Than Life" (1996, Atavistic) and "The Twilight of the Computer Age" (1999, Atavistic). The now-married Korbet-Wootton currently resides in the UK, where she is writing novels and screenplays, doing graphics/web design, and still playing guitar and bass. In 2002, Korbet-Wootton took part in a reunion of her classic early '80s NYC punk band Even Worse, playing two nights at CBGB for the New York Thrash 20th Anniversary, coinciding with the release of Even Worse's CD "You've Ruined Everything" (Grand Theft Audio) recorded in 1981-82.
Steve DiBenedetto later drummed for Spineless Yesmen and The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black, and played on several Jad Fair albums. He is currently a reknowned NYC artist whose surrealist paintings and drawings are exhibited in galleries worldwide. DiBenedetto's artwork has been lauded in "The New York Times," "The Village Voice," etc.
Three Chop Shop alumni---Truck (on bass and vocals), Korbet (guitar), and Lipper (drums)---reunited in 1993-94 as a trio called Hellvis, releasing a 7-inch EP "The Frog" (1993, Fat Bastard Records) produced by Wharton Tiers that included a cover of Chop Shop's "Smashing Into Heaven." The band recorded a full-length album in 1994 with Tiers that remains unissued.
Joe Truck - vocals (1984-1985)
Andy Trash - bass, slide guitar, lap steel, backing vocals (1984-1985)
Eddie Stern - guitar (1985)
Matt Lipper - drums (1985)
Rebecca Korbet - guitar (1984-1985)
Steve DiBenedetto - drums (1984-1985)
12-27-1984 The Dive, New York, NY
12-30-1984 S.N.A.F.U., New York, NY
01-08-1985 CBGB, New York, NY
02-13-1985 The Dive, New York, NY
03-15-1985 The Dive, New York, NY
04-19-1985 The Dive, New York, NY
04-24-1985 CBGB, New York, NY
05-11-1985 Subway, Rego Park, Queens, NY
06-13-1985 CBGB, New York, NY
06-14-1985 Subway, Rego Park, Queens, NY
08-15-1985 9:30 Club, Washington, DC
09-12-1985 CBGB, New York, NY
10-??-1985 Neither/Nor, New York, NY