Posted February 23, 2006
THEY'RE LIVING ALL OVER YOU:
DINOSAUR JR RE-ANIMATED
In the early 1980s, hardcore fans Joseph Mascis (who later contracted his first name to ‘J’) and Lou Barlow formed Dinosaur from the embers of the noisy hardcore band Deep Wound. With Emmet Murphy (‘Murph’) on drums Dinosaur evolved into an occasionally confronting blend of brutal hardcore noise and Neil Young inspired rock melodies. The band’s eponymous first album was released in 1985 on Homestead Records. In 1987 Dinosaur Jr (the ‘Jr’ was added to distinguish it from another band using the same name) signed to ex-Black Flag guitarist Greg Ginn’s SST Records and released the seminal “You’re Living All Over Me”. A third album, “Bug” (which contained the band’s signature tune and slacker anthem “Freak Scene”) was released in 1988. By the time Nirvana’s "Nevermind" ushered in the MTV-sponsored grunge generation. Dinosaur Jr was past its creative peak, yet – along with bands like The Screaming Trees and Big Black – represented the prototype slacker punk scene.
By this time the intra-band tensions in Dinosaur Jr had reached breaking point (the title of the band’s second album was famously inspired by a comment made during a particularly difficult road trip) and Barlow was unceremoniously expelled from the band shortly after "Bug". Barlow went on to form low-fi indie band Sebadoh, and subsequent to that Folk Implosion before turning his hand to some solo work. Mascis continued with the name Dinosaur Jr until 1994 (Murph exited shortly before this, and later joined The Lemonheads), subsequently doing a smattering of solo work under the nom de plume J Mascis and the Fog. Mascis also found time to do a bunch of Stooges cover shows with former Minuteman Mike Watt (with later involvement from Scott and Ron Asheton).
After years of dysfunctional personality clashes, the original band members decided to bury the hatchet in 2005 and regroup for a series of reunion shows in the United States and Europe, and the re-release of the band’s first three albums. The band’s Australian tour has already attracted major interest – shows in Sydney and Melbourne are already sold out – suggesting that there’s life left in the Dinosaur yet.
PATRICK EMERY spoke to bassist Lou Barlow on the eve of the band’s Australian tour.
THE BARMAN entered into discourse with J Mascis
DINOSAUR JR AND LOU BARLOW SOLO TOUR
AUSTRALIAN DATES HERE
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