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The Dirtys Shortlived Existence

For those motherfuckers who don’t know, and that’s probably damn near everyone out there, the Dirtys were a great, very short-lived garage punk band that recorded exactly one album for the sadly defunct Crypt label and then blew apart. According to their publicist, the label fronted them a grand to buy a touring but they spent most of the money on drugs and ended up with a real clunker for gig transportation, which died somewhere in the Midwest on their first (and last) U.S. tour.

This is how punk was meant to be. Not some SoCal “hardcore” band working on its 15th album of protest songs while gleaning huge sums from the likes of Atlantic. Damn. Anyway, this little story ran in some issue of Alternative Press mag a few years back.


“I don’t wanna be seen as a pussy,” says Dirtys guitarist Mark Watt, explaining the somewhat extreme nature of the Detroit-based quartet. “I hear some ‘punk’ records and go, ‘Why are they holding back?’ We dig the Oblivians’ noise and Teengenerate’s power—the ballsiness of those bands was amazing. If we didn’t record something like that, something with absolute fucking maximum energy, I wouldn’t be happy.”

His band’s debut CD *You Should Be Sinnin * (Crypt) should still Mark’s beating heart. In fact, it’s designed to still hearts—every effeminate emotion whatsoever has been stomped out of dainty existence on this double-time dirtbomb. Given the lo-fi, high-adrenaline savagery of tunes like “I’m On Fire,” “Rock it Out tonight,” and the title track, it doesn’t really surprise that the boys are prone to a little extracurricular blood loss themselves.

“We’ve been beating each other up for a long time—all of us grew up as friends,” says Watt of his bandmates. “I hurt the other guitarist (Larry Terbrush) pretty bad in LA, but here in Germany he knocked my tooth out. I figure we’re even.”

--el rey