v/a: Punk House LP (MOCAD, 2017)

December 17, 2017 at 9:46 pm | Posted in Photos, Reviews | Leave a comment

v/a: Punk House LP

The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit is currently showcasing an exhibit called Sonic Rebellion: Music As Resistance, which is inspired by the 1967 Detroit Rebellion and traces the city’s history of revolutionary music and activism since then, ranging from the MC5 and John Sinclair and the White Panthers to P-Funk and free jazz and blues to new wave and garage rock to Detroit techno to hip-hop and beyond. It’s easily one of my favorite MOCAD exhibits, but the cherry on top is the Punk House exhibit at the Mobile Homestead (a full replica of Mike Kelley’s childhood home which is located right next to the MOCAD). Celebrating all thinks punk, noise, free jazz, garage rock, and above all DIY related to the Detroit scene, the exhibit includes lots of show posters, album art, comic books, memorabilia, artwork by everyone from Jad and David Fair to Mike Dykehouse to Suzy Poling to Timmy Vulgar, plus a special installation room by Jimbo Easter. On top of all of this, the museum released a special compilation LP containing music by many of the artists who contributed to the exhibit. It starts out with a bracing live track from synth-punk heroes ADULT., then there’s a Timmy Vulgar track about a badass rocker girl who prefers the Stones to the Beatles. Jad and David appear twice (and several more times on the download-only bonus tracks) and also write a song about the Stones (“Mick Called Charlie”), and there’s Beefheartian weirdness from Jimbo, solo and as part of Druid Perfume. Of course Destroy All Monsters and other related projects provide prophecies of musical freedom. The Whales (with shrieks by Godzuki’s Erika Hoffmann) and Princess Dragonmom provide noise, while Dykehouse and Cotton Museum provide creepy, queasy synths. There’s also some straight up psych-pop from Outrageous Cherry, and the one and only Wolfman Band with their update of the Sonics’ “The Witch” (retitled “She’s My Wolf”). Pod Blotz’ pulsating death electronics certainly deserve a shout-out as well. The LP, as well as the entire exhibit, is an excellent artifact of the Detroit underground scene, past present and future. The exhibit runs until January 7, and there’s no telling if copies of the LP will still be for sale afterwards, so by all means get to the museum as soon as possible. Here’s some photos from Sonic Rebellion and Punk House:

vintage concert poster art

Abdul Haqq and Alan Oldham album art for UR and other Detroit techno artists

The keyboard Derrick May used to record “Strings of Life” and “Nude Photo”. I was seriously in shock when I approached this historical instrument

boombox collage

records @ Punk House


David Fair

Chris Pottinger

Forest Juziuk @ Tumbleweed Tavern

Jimbo Easter’s Tumbleweed Tavern

Jimbo Easter’s Tumbleweed Tavern

Jimbo Easter’s Tumbleweed Tavern

Jimbo Easter @ Tumbleweed Tavern

Suzy Poling + Nicola Kuperus @ Tumbleweed Tavern

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