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Meat Puppets

The Meat Puppets are a rock band formed in Phoenix, Arizona in 1980. The band’s best known lineup consisted of Curt Kirkwood (vocals, guitar), Cris Kirkwood (bass) and Derrick Bostrom (drums) (a lineup that lasted from its inception to 1996). They began rehearsing together by learning songs from Bostrom’s collection of punk rock 45s. After briefly toying with the name “the Bastions of Immaturity,” they settled on the name Meat Puppets in June, 1980, after a song by Curt of the same name which appears on their first album.

Their early works (the In A Car EP and Meat Puppets LP) were wholeheartedly punk, with vocals so feral in their delivery they were often indecipherable, but ultimately humorous and clever once deciphered. The musicianship was mostly thrash, yet the songs were tinged with a subtle, haunting element like that of a long abandoned ghost town. Their brand of cathartic, explosive hardcore attracted the attention of legendary punk label SST, who released their first record in 1982.

Unsatisfied with the result, the band spent plenty of time in the studio before the release of 1983’s Meat Puppets II. The band’s exciting experimentation with psychedelia, acid rock, and quieter tunes on top of a core western-style thrash sound, gave them their one acknowledged classic album, and propelled the record to legendary status. Meat Puppets II turned Meat Puppets into the one of the leading bands in SST Records league and, along with Violent Femmes, the Gun Club and others, helped establish country punk.

The Meat Puppets are an American rock band formed in January 1980, in the "Sunnyslope" neighborhood of Phoenix, Arizona.
The Meat Puppets later gained significant exposure when the Kirkwood brothers served as guest musicians on Nirvana's MTV Unplugged performance in 1993.
The band broke up twice, in 1996 and 2002, but reunited again in 2006.
In 2008 they performed their classic second album live in its entirety at the ATP New York festival and are set to perform it again in London during December.
Though the band's drug use included cocaine, heroin, LSD and many others, Cris' use of heroin and crack cocaine became so bad he never left his house except to obtain more drugs. At least two people (including one of his best friends and his wife) died of overdoses at his house in Tempe, AZ during this time.
By the release of 1984's Meat Puppets II, the bandmembers "were so sick of the hardcore thing," according to Bostrom. "We were really into pissing off the crowd."

 

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