MUSIC REVIEWS AND
TRAINWRECKS OF THOUGHT

CHEETAH CHROME: A DEAD BOY’S TALE FROM THE FRONT LINES OF PUNK ROCK


Book coverAlright so Cheetah Chrome wrote a book chronicling his misadventures in the Dead Boys and beyond but the biggest surprise is… Cheetah’s a good writer. Who knew?

The introduction opens with a heartbreaking account of how he found out that his best friend Stiv had died. This sets the tone from the beginning that this will be an extremely honest and visceral look at his past.

For all the damage that years of drug use have taken on his body, Cheetah’s mind has held on tight to the details of his memories. This includes many great Dead Boys road stories that confirm everything I’ve ever suspected and more (little girl).

Trashed hotel rooms, drugs and booze, fights, sex with underage girls, arrests, all delivered in a very casual way with very little of the “look at me” ego that spills out of other books in this genre.

A couple of the most interesting bits to pop out to me:

– “Young Loud & Snotty” was recorded with the idea that it was just demos.

– Cheetah’s guitar on that record was a cheap Les Paul knockoff through a Sound City head.

– The first time he met Johnny Thunders he threw a drink in Cheetah’s face.

– He gave Iggy a bunch of downers before a Stooges show that resulted in a brief 3 song disaster.

– Many of the stories involve pills, piss, vomit or shit.

I was really impressed at the strength and style of the writing in this memoir. From his early days as a teenage delinquent to the whirlwind rise and fall as a member of Ohio’s premier punk band, the stories and anecdotes are all you’d hoped they’d be. ┬áDo yourself a favor and check this one out.


4 out of 5

Smog Veil
Cheetah Chrome: A Dead Boy’s Tale: From the Front Lines of Punk Rock

NEW GENERATION SUPERSTARS – CRASH COURSE



New Generation Superstars - Crash Course artworkFirst off this is a pile driver of a CD, a very dense record, tight songwriting – fans of the early Hellacopters might wanna take note.

This is hard rock but not metal (save for a few “falling down the stairs” drum fills – but what else ya gonna do when the songs are this fast? He does do a cool roll in the breakdown of “White Trash”) with lots of guitar solos over shout along choruses. The guitar playing actually kinda reminds of Blare N Bitch from Betty Blowtorch. Crash Course has a very “live” feel to the recording which I’m always fan of, so bonus there.

There’s a nice dirtiness to New Generation Superstars sound, reminds me of The Sea Hags played at 78 rpm – not quite the same swagger but heavy.

Standout tracks include “Come Over”, “Dope Fiend”, “Done Before” (nice lyrics) & the aforementioned “White Trash”.

We are officially living in what I like to call the post-Backyard Babies era. Not that the boys from Sweden have hung it up but their descendents are growing up and starting to want their own share of the spotlight. New Generation Superstars are ready for their close-up.

-SG


4 out of 5

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