Dean Dirg rocks my world

Dean Dirg
"26 Kicks to Make the Whole World Pay"
CD (Dead Beat, 2005)

Holy crap! Germany's Dean Dirg kicks out some badass hyper punk on "26 Kicks to Make the Whole World Pay." The CD, released domestically by Dead Beat Records, compiles the band's 2004 LP "The Last Kid on the Block" and 2002's "Dean Dirg" LP.

Musically speaking, Dean Dirg is akin to the manic thrash of Henry Fiat's Open Sore, which means they play ridiculously fast and full throttle. Standout tracks include "Everyone Back Off!" and "!!!!" which are super speedy anthems that sound like the Hives' "Barely Legal" or Circle Jerks' "Group Sex" played at 45.

This is really intense modern punk that I regret not discovering sooner. I wish more bands would adopt this style of ultra-quick blasts of mega-high energy punk rock and roll, because it rocks my friggin' world.

MP3: Dean Dirg - 'Everyone Back Off!'
MP3: Dean Dirg - '!!!!'
Dirtnap Records PayPal special

Dirtnap Records has a great deal: 3 CDs for $25 ppd. in the USA when you pay by PayPal.

I'd recommend you pick up the following:

The Marked Men - "On the Outside" - One of my favorite records of 2004. Great punk/pop a la The Dickies.

The Pulses - "Gather Round and Destroy All Our Records" - Haven't heard this one (their latest) but I loved their 1st record. Clever indie pop with just enough quirks to make it interesting.

The Spits - "The Spits" - Insanely retarded punk rock. Think The Ramones dumbed down to their bare essence.

Tell Ken I sent you.
The Circle Jerks - Live at the House of Blues DVD

Out of all the recent punk videos that I’ve seen recently (Government Issue Live 1985, X Live in Los Angeles and Punk: Attitude), I was surprised when I concluded that The Circle Jerks Live at the House of Blues is the best.

Professionally recorded and filmed, the band rips through a 30+ song set in 60 minutes. Admittedly the band members, all in their early 40s now, are considered old farts by many skeptics - myself included. But this DVD proves once and for all the might, power and tightness of America's all-too-great hardcore punk band.

Guitarist Greg Hetson (of Bad Religion fame) seems at ease on stage and totally in sync with bassist Zander Schloss, who also does time in The Weirdos. Drummer Kevin Fitzgerald is the most recent "new" member of the group. While his drumming style with The Geraldine Fibbers was sublime, his playing is precise on manic thrashers such as “Deny Everything” and “I Just Want Some Skank.” Singer Keith Morris is perhaps THE best singer of early ‘80s punk scene and I'm proud to report that his shrill and intense voice still as crisp as it did on the classic 1983 LP, "Group Sex."

As for the performances, the band plays nearly all the hits and is wickedly tight throughout. Perhaps the best thing about this DVD is the four-song encore, where the Circle Jerks pay their respects to hardcore history performing Black Flag's "Nervous Breakdown" and The Weirdos' "Solitary Confinement."

Also worth a laugh is the commentary by Schloss and Morris, who are self-aware that they are middle-aged punkers playing what is traditionally thought of as a young man’s game. But they’re also cognizant of the fact that the Circle Jerks blow away a good chunk of current punk bands, and phony poseurs such as Sum 41 and Green Day who cleaned up their punk sound to appease corporate America.

If you’re a Circle Jerks fan, don’t hesitate checking this DVD out. And if you’re not a Circle Jerks fan, do yourself a favor and go buy their classic album, “Group Sex” and discover an amazing piece of hardcore history.

Buy The Circle Jerks - Live at the House of Blues DVD at

Recommended listening:
Circle Jerks - "Group Sex"
Black Flag - "First Four Years"
Weirdos - "Weird World, Volume One "
Bad Brains - "Bad Brains"
Two articles in current Delaware Today

I have two articles in the September issue of Delaware Today.

One is a preview of the Rehoboth Jazz Festival and the other is a preview of Greyhounds Reach the Beach.

I'll be attending Greyhounds Reach the Beach in Dewey next month - It'll be my first time.

I'm currently working on two articles for Delaware Today's Health and Fitness Guide.
Review: Bill Hicks: Agent of Evolution

I write my review of Kevin Booth's "Agent of Evolution" from a unique perspective. In 2000 through 2001, I worked with Kevin to put together this biography of late comedian Bill Hicks. I recorded well over 50 hours of interviews with Kevin, spent time in Austin and Houston hanging out as well as visiting all of Bill's old haunts including El Azteca.

I spent time at the ranch were Kevin and Bill had their legendary alien encounter and even visited the dedication of a rebuilt church at the site of the Waco-Koresh disaster, where Bill and Kevin videotaped during the original Waco siege. Kevin and I backtracked to his old high school and interviewed some of Bill's teachers. And Kevin shared stories and showed me photos and videos of him and Bill together some of which have yet to see the light of day - and probably never will.

During this time I heard much of the AOE story firsthand. I got to know Kevin Booth on a professional and personal level and understand the complexities of his relationship with Bill Hicks. Much of what Kevin shared with me is in AOE, essentially verbatim as I heard it.

Through no fault of Kevin's, after a year's worth of progress, I realized that I was no longer in the frame of mind to work on the book. In short, the project's demands exceeded the resources I was able to devote. Kevin made a wise choice by recruiting writer Michael Bertin, who admittedly did a much better job writing this book than I could have at the time.

The book is not perfect – no biography could ever hope to be. But the book is perhaps the most spot-on and detailed portrait of Bill Hicks to date. And many of these stories are Kevin's recollections and egocentric. That is to be expected. AOE is not only the story of Bill Hicks' career and who he was as a person. AOE is also the story of two friends that despite traveling two very different paths, worked together to create movies, videos, funny skits, music and comedy records.

In the seven years that I've been a fan of Bill Hicks' work and known Kevin Booth and followed his work with Sacred Cow, one thing is clear. Kevin is perhaps the one constant in keeping the spirit of Hicks alive. Not only with this book and the "Sane Man" video, but also with his collaborations with other comedians (Joe Rogan, Doug Stanhope) and personalities (Alex Jones) as well as continuing to make movies including the upcoming film on the drug war.

It's the spirit of creating art, making fun little projects and getting off your ass and doing things that fueled Kevin and Bill's relationship. And even though Bill Hicks is dead, Kevin has kept right on going making movies and music and now this book. He's willing to share everything he's got and for that, I applaud him.

AOE is a warts-and-all book, meaning Kevin Booth lets his guard down completely in recounting stories and events in his and Bill Hick’s lives. And some of these events are not pretty and not something to be proud of. But they are, according to Kevin, true stories. And I have no reason to doubt this.
Cold chillin'

Just another day in Wilmington, Delaware.

Someone at work just asked me for a link to the story about a Delaware woman who was injecting her child with feces.

Here it is.

Listening to Mike Lupica's "Hip Transistor" as I work on a Rolling Stones piece for work.

Took the dogs out to the dog park this afternoon and then to Concord Pet.

Concord Pet always has a lot of free samples and I scored some for the feral cats in the neighborhood, including one that is around so much that Kelly named her - Olivia.

I watched "Premonition" last night. It's a decent Japanese supernatural thriller, similar in vein to The Ring and The Grudge. Nothing stellar, but OK enough.

I finally watched the first four episodes of Weeds. It didn't knock my socks off, but it's definitely good and Elizabeth Perkins and Mary Louise Parker are both stellar in it.

Can't wait for the new season of "Huff." That is the only new TV show I even care about. The new fall season of TV doesn't even interest me.

Guess that makes me a TV snob.