Attention all Disco Inferno fans (the band, not the song)

And I know you’re out there. Earlier today an absolutely essential series of pieces went up at the Crumbs in the Butter site over in the UK dedicated to said band, one of the most compelling, unique groups in these past decades. To give you an idea of how much regard I held and hold them in, while I wouldn’t have given up all three times I’ve seen My Bloody Valentine over the years, I would have given up two of them to have seen Disco Inferno even once. It wasn’t going to happen, they never had a chance to tour America, but friend Tom Ewing did see them in 1995 or so and says it was one of the best shows he’d ever seen, which I don’t doubt.

The core of the pieces are two extended recollections by the band’s leader, Ian Crause, about his youth and the forming of the group and the recordings they released — it’s at once a great story of an awkward teenage outsider finding inspiration and connection in music and, more importantly, the gumption, drive and desire to take inspirations and turn them into a new, increasingly unique blueprint. They cover a lot of ground and anyone even slightly curious about the band needs to read them; to quote even one section would prompt me to quote all of them. Crause is an accomplished writer, self-aware and able to look back on his past with a knowing but very empathetic eye.

Richard Adams from Hood contributes a strong introduction and Glen Johnson of Piano Magic shares an epilogue with, well, me (and I would have been hyping this whole thing even if I hadn’t contributed, believe me). My offering is a selection I wrote for an as yet unpublished piece for Mike McGonigal’s peerless Yeti, which perhaps explains its abrupt start and stop, but hopefully I’ve captured what I think was most crucial about the band’s work from where I stood.

I’ve heard rumblings about some even more wonderful Disco Inferno-related news as well but as that’s still up in the air a bit I’ll save that for later…


10 Responses to “Attention all Disco Inferno fans (the band, not the song)”

  1. Stephen Says:

    Ned, which two MBV shows (of your three) would you give up in retrospect to have seen DI in their prime? I hope you realize, the question begs itself…

  2. Ned Raggett Says:

    I think it would have to be a rotating choice…

  3. Eliott Bernal Says:

    Thanks a lot for this. Just recently discovered Disco Inferno about a couple months ago and fell in love instantly. Shame they’re not as recognized as they should.

  4. Eve Says:

    But what if we are fans of the song?

  5. Ned Raggett Says:

    If you’re talking the Trammps, no worries. If you’re talking 50 Cent, you are insane.

  6. An Unreliable Witness Says:

    Thank heavens for WordPress tags, or else I would have never discovered this post, or the Crumbs in the Butter material you link to, during one of my periodic Google searches for anything Crause / DI related (yes, I am that tragic). I too have heard the rumblings of wonderful Disco Inferno-related news, and am not daring to breathe until I know for certain that it’s true or, erm, not so true.

  7. j Says:

    DI seem more of a studio band. You can’t recreate tracks like Second Language in a live context.

  8. Ned Raggett Says:

    A friend who saw them at a show before the equipment theft says it was one of the best shows he’s ever seen, and that they were reaching a new level of pop-vs.-innovation fusion based on some unreleased tracks they performed. So it sounds like the band did its level best live, though I wouldn’t blame anyone for thinking otherwise!

  9. Me Says:

    Actually, Ian Crause has said that DI GO POP (the band at their most chaotic and groundbreaking) was all recorded live.

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