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Meat Puppets

Meat Puppets are a three-piece band, formed in January 1980, in Paradise Valley, Arizona. The brothers Kirkwood, CurtandCris, played guitar and bass,respectively, and Derrick Bostrom played drums. They began rehearsing together bylearningsongs from Bostrom's collection of punk rock 45s. Afterbriefly toying with the name "the Bastions ofImmaturity," they settledon the name Meat Puppets in June, 1980, after a song by Curt of the same namewhichappears on their first album.

Their early works (the In A Car EP and Meat Puppets LP) were wholeheartedly punk, with vocals so feral in ...read more

Meat Puppets are a three-piece band, formed in January 1980, in Paradise Valley, Arizona. The brothers Kirkwood, CurtandCris, played guitar and bass,respectively, and Derrick Bostrom played drums. They began rehearsing together bylearningsongs from Bostrom's collection of punk rock 45s. Afterbriefly toying with the name "the Bastions ofImmaturity," they settledon the name Meat Puppets in June, 1980, after a song by Curt of the same namewhichappears 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 deliverytheywere often indecipherable, butultimately humorous and ingenious once discovered. The musicianship was mostlybreakneckthrash, yet the songs were tinged with a subtle, hauntingelement like that of a long abandoned ghost town.Their brand ofcathartic, explosive hardcore attracted the attention of legendary punk label SST, whoreleased their firstrecord in 1982.

Unsatisfied with the result, the band spent plenty of time in the studio before the release of 1983's Meat Puppets II.Theband's exciting experimentationwith psychedelia, acid rock, and quieter tunes on top of a core western-stylethrashsound, gave them their one acknowledged classic album, andpropelled the record to legendary status.

The Meat Puppets burgeoning musicality led to more intricate and melodic efforts on 1985's Up on the Sun, which wasacohesive collage of songs thatfurther demonstrated their abilities to capture a sound that had all of the wonder ofthedesert. The album granted them their first major mainstreamexposure, and many fans still consider it to betheirmasterpiece.

Over the next decade, the Meat Puppets remained on SST and released a series of albums. After the release of Out MyWayin 1986, the band was brieflysidelined by an accident when Curt's finger was broken after being slammed in theirtouring van'sdoor. The accident delayed the band's next album, thepsychedelic Mirage, until the next year.Subsequently, their next album,the heavier, power-trio-rooted Huevos came out less than six months afterwards,inlate summer of 1987. Monsters wasreleased in 1989, featuring Curt-as-guitar-hero on such extended jams as"Touchdown King" and "Flight of the FireWeasel..

As numerous bands from the seminal SST label, and other kindred punk-oriented indies, grappled with the "goingmajor"decision, so did the 'Pups. Twoyears after their final studio recording for SST, 1989's Monsters, the trio releasedits major labeldebut, Forbidden Places, on the indie-friendly LondonRecords. A three-year break saw the band's studioreturn with 1994'sToo High To Die, produced by Butthole Surfers guitarist Paul Laery. The albumfeatured "Backwater",a minor hit on alternativeradio, and a bitchin' hidden. track update of "Lake of Fire." Too High To Die earned the 'Pups agold record(500,000 sold),outselling their previous records combined. That same year saw the 'Pups in their brightestmainstream spotlight as the bandachievedsudden popularity when Nirvana's Kurt Cobain invited Cris and Curt to joinhim on MTV for acoustic performances of"Plateau", "Oh Me" and "Lake of Fire"(all originally from Meat Puppets II). Theresulting album, Nirvana - Unplugged in NewYork, served as a swan-song for Nirvana, as Cobain died six monthsafterthe concert. "Lake of Fire" became a cult favorite forits particularly wrenching vocal performance from Cobain.Subsequently, the Nirvana exposureand the strength of the single"Backwater" (their only charting single) helped liftthe Meat Puppets to new commercial heights.

1995's No Joke! was the final album recorded by the original Meat Puppets lineup. Unfortunately, Cris Kirkwood was nowaheroin addict, whose heavy andcompulsive use of the drug increasingly dominated his life. This was a major departurefrom thepsychedelic drugs with which the Meat Puppets hadalways been associated; his erratic behavior soon becametoo much forthe band to cope with.

Derrick recorded a solo EP under the monicker Today's Sounds in 1996, and later on in 1999 took charge of re-issuingthePuppets' original seven recordson Rykodisc as well as putting out their first live album, Live in Montana. Curt formeda newband in Austin, TX called the Royal Neanderthal Orchestra, butthey changed their name to Meat Puppets torelease GoldenLies in 2000 and Live in 2002. The line-up was Curt (voc/git), Kyle Ellison (voc/git), AndrewDuplantis(voc/bass) and ShandonSahm (drums). Sahm's father was the legendary fiddler-singer-songwriter Doug Sahm of TheSir Douglas Quintet andTexasTornados. The concluding track to Classic Puppets entitled "New Leaf" also dates from thisincarnation of the band.

Around 2001-2002, the Meat Puppets dissolved as Curt has gone on to release albums with the groups Eyes AdriftandVolcano. In 2005, he released hisfirst solo album entitled Snow.

His brother Cris was arrested in December 2003 for attacking a security guard at a post office with the guard's baton.Theguard shot Kirkwood duringthe melee. Kirkwood was subsequently denied bail, the judge citing Kirkwood's previousdrug arrestsand parole violations. He eventually went to prison forfelony assault. He was released in July of 2005.

Derrick Bostrom began a home page for the band about six months before the original trio stopped working together.The sitewent through manydifferent permutations before it was essentially mothballed in 2003. In late 2005, Bostromrevamped it onceagain, this time as a "blog" for hisrecollections and as a place to share pieces of Meat Puppets history.

On March 24, 2006, Curt Kirkwood polled fans at his MySpace page[1] with the following bulletin: "Question for all!Would theoriginal line up of the MeatPuppets interest anyone? Feedback is good - do you want a reunion?!" Theresponse from fans wasoverwhelmingly positive within a couple of hours,leading to speculation of a full-blown MeatPuppets reunion in the nearfuture. However, a post made by Derrick Bostrom on the official Meat Puppets sitedismissedthe notion.

An April 26, 2006 billboard.com story reported that Cris Kirkwood and Curt Kirkwood would reunite as the MeatPuppetswithout original drummer DerrickBostrom. Primus drummer Tim Alexander was announced as Bostrom'sreplacement.However, the drummer was later changed to Ted Marcus, and thenew lineup released the album "Rise To YourKnees" in2007. « hide

Similar Bands: Eyes Adrift, Minutemen, Curt Kirkwood, Neil Young

LPs
Rat Farm
04/16/2013

3.6
19 Votes
Lollipop
2011

3.4
23 Votes
Sewn Together
2009

3.5
19 Votes
Rise to Your Knees
2007

3.5
22 Votes
Golden Lies
2000

3.1
21 Votes
No Joke!
1995

3.3
26 Votes
Too High To Die
1994

3.7
96 Votes
Forbidden Places
1991

3.8
37 Votes
Monsters
1989

3.4
32 Votes
Huevos
1987

3.7
45 Votes
Mirage
1987

3.8
49 Votes
Up on the Sun
1985

4.2
138 Votes
Meat Puppets II
1984

4.2
289 Votes
Meat Puppets
1982

3.4
73 Votes
EPs
Out My Way
1986

3.6
18 Votes
In a Car
1981

3.9
37 Votes

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