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Damage Manual | review | electro | rock | Lollipop

The Damage Manual

by Lex Marburger

I can't say enough about these guys. You take (arguably) the four most innovative musicians of the post-punk wasteland of the mid-'80s, and you use their immense body of work as a launching point. What you get is The Damage Manual. The bands these adventurers spring from? PiL, Pigface, Revolting Cocks, and Killing Joke. The result? Remember when underground rock music had balls and could shred the face of any poseur? When yer favorite bands mixed up dub, punk, industrial, funk, and art, and you didn't care, as long as they could make you feel like you could kick the world's ass? The Damage Manual is a band with ideas, and a hand on the volume control.

Just think of the combo in more detail: Take the Earth-swallowing dub bass of Jah Wobble. Huge, lifting, pooling bass, deadly in its flow. Add the flames and heat of Geordie Walker's guitar, slicing and tearing the air next to your ears with the intensity of a monk and the chaos of a tornado. Turn around, and yer smashed in the face by Martin Atkin's drums, tight, precise, immense, blistering. And over the top comes Chris Connelly, who, as it turns out, not only can sing beautifully as well as fiercely, but has a pretty decent David Bowie impersonation up his sleeve. Now pepper all this up with electronic tweaks and giggles, and yer all set to wait another six months for them to tour yer town! I hope that got the attention of the A&R hacks setting up the tour schedule. There's no way around it. The Damage Manual are the supergroup you always wished would happen. Now it has, so it's up to you not to fuck it up.
(PO Box 16008 Chicago, IL 60616)


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