03 June 2007

Dead Boys: Live at CBGB 1977

It’s been awhile since I’ve splashed in the fountain of 70s punk rock, but thanks to Netflix, I had an opportunity to sample the legendary Dead Boys – Live at CBGBs! 1977! I’ll admit that I never made to CBGBs – ever - and in 1977 I was 9. By the time I discovered the Dead Boys, Stiv Bators was in Paris (but not yet dead) and Cheetah Chrome was living in Boston trying to get gigs at the Rat in Kenmore Square (drug addicted loser). Regardless, this DVD is a great piece of musical history. The footage and sound are amazing and at 28 minutes it’s just one song after another with all the between-song tuning and whatnot edited out. Stiv is so great – clearly paying homage to Iggy and the Stooges but with some nice, personal touches (like blowing his nose into a piece of sandwich meat and eating it). Sonic Reducer and Search & Destroy are two of the best songs to come out of US punk scene and they’re done with rip-roaring intensity here (except that no one goes for the high notes on Sonic Reducer, no surprise there though).

The extras on the DVD include a very interesting performance by Steel Tips – kind of a punk/atonal noise/performance art ensemble. Worth investigating.

I wonder what all those kids at the show are doing now. Probably a bunch of soccer moms and lawn-moving dads renting punk rock documentaries through Netflix…

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