Friday, May 25, 2012

We Never Learn: the Gunk Punk Undergut 1988-2001

We Never Learn: The Gunk Punk Undergut, 1988-2001 By Eric Davidson I love the New Bomb Turks. They are icons of 90's punk, and one of the great rocknroll bands of all time. And, although this book is authored by their incredibly charismatic singer, Eric Davidson, this is not a book about them. This is, however, a book about the Dwarves, the Cramps, Cheater Slicks, Devil Dogs, Estrus Records, Crypt Records, The Gories, the Mummies, The Stooges, Teengenerate, Pagans, Motards, Subpop, Ramones, and a ton of other bands, record labels, and artists that were tearing it up in small clubs across the globe throughout the 1990's. Bands that fall under the author’s personal label of “Gunk Punk”. This is an excellent collection of interviews and anecdotes from the people who were involved in a musical phenomenon that was often overshadowed by the very tall shadow of grunge, and unfortunately, the very VERY embarrassingly bad stench that was nu-metal (umlauts purposely left off, out of respect for the umlaut). I loved every second of this book. 90’s punk is my second favorite era of rocknroll. It's an era that I was immersed within, and Mr. Davidson captures its chaotic beauty in a painstakingly thorough and very entertaining way. The idea of Letting the people who were there tell their stories, with just a smattering of personal recollection and interjection, is brilliantly simple and makes for a compelling read. My only complaint about this book is that the Fireballs of Freedom, a band so good live that they should have been added to the list of deadly sins, are only mentioned once, and in passing. A small oversight for such a worthy read.