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Thursday, February 5, 2009

RIP the Cramps Lux Interior

Lux Interior, the frontman for iconic punk band the Cramps, passed away yesterday, February 4th, at the Glendale Memorial Hospital in Glendale, California. Interior, born Erick Lee Purkhiser, was 62 and is survived by his wife of 37 years, Cramps guitarist Kristy “Poison Ivy Rorschach” Wallace. In a statement released by the band’s publicist, a pre-existing heart condition is named as the cause of death.

The Cramps first made their mark in the mid-1970s and early 1980’s when Interior, Poison Ivy and a revolving door rhythm section frequented the stages at famed New York punk clubs like CBGB, the Ritz, the Peppermint Lounge and Max’s Kansas City alongside artists like Television, the Ramones, Blondie and Patti Smith. The band eventually recruited drummer Nick Knox in 1977, who remained with the group until 1991. During those years, the Cramps were credited with creating both the term and musical style “psychobilly,” a synthesis of punk rock and rockabilly that was gloriously raw and over the top. The Cramps released 14 albums over the course of their career, their latest being 2004's How To Make A Monster.

The band's rockabilly-infused punk has been credited as an influence by bands including The White Stripes and The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion. Interior was truly one of the punk rock’s greatest frontmen; the Cramps, of one of the most exciting and most original bands to emerge from the prolific era.


Barbara Bruederlin said...

I just managed to find a Cramps cd in my favourite used record store not long ago.

What a shame.

Dale said...

I was sad when I heard about Lux's passing. I really liked The Cramps but always thought if I went to one of their shows I'd be murdered. I'm less meek but just as nerdy now. R.I.P. Lux.

Westcoast Walker said...

Lux was a mad genius and a brilliant performer. I had a "Bad Music For Bad People" t-shirt in high school that I wore like a badge of honour until it disintegrated from over use. That album was great - "Goo Goo Muck" was a real party favourite.

Pozzy said...

I saw the Cramps numerous times in NYC. They rocked, a must have is The Cramps live at the Napa State Mental Hospital in CA. It's in B/W and recorded on Sony beta max, but it is the greatest concert on earth, buy it now!!!! RIP Lux