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The Jesus Lizard Biography

The Jesus Lizard Tickets

The Jesus Lizard In-depth Biography

Willfully abrasive and atonal, the Jesus Lizard} emerged in the early '90s as a leading noise rock} band in the American independent underground. During the first part of the decade, the band turned out a series of independent records filled with scathing, disembowelling, guitar-driven pseudo-industrial} noise}, all of which received positive reviews in underground music publications and heavy college-radio play. By the mid-'90s, the group's following had grown large enough to convince a major label, Capitol Records}, to sign the band.

The Jesus Lizard} was formed by Duane Denison} (guitar), David Yow} (vocals), and David Sims} (bass), the latter two being former members of the Austin-based post-hardcore} noise} group Scratch Acid}. After Scratch Acid} disbanded, Sims} joined Rapeman}, an abrasive indie rock} group led by Steve Albini}. The recording and performing schedule of Rapeman} was rather erratic, so Sims} formed the Jesus Lizard} with Yow} and Denison} in 1987. Originally, the group performed with a drum machine, much like Albini}'s previous band, Big Black}. Albini} produced the group's debut EP, Pure}, which was released on Touch & Go} in 1989; the producer would work on every Jesus Lizard} release on Touch & Go}.

The Jesus Lizard} added a human drummer, Mac McNeilly}, in late 1989 and he appeared on the band's first full-length album, 1990's Head}. The following year, the group released its second album, Goat}, which received positive reviews from mainstream music publications such as Spin}. By the time of the release of Goat}, the band had cultivated a large cult following among the American indie rock} underground, based on both their records and their notoriously reckless, occasionally violent and vulgar, live performances.

In 1992, the Jesus Lizard} released a split single with Nirvana} ("Puss"} [Jesus Lizard}]/"Oh the Guilt"} [Nirvana}]), who had just broken into the rock & roll} mainstream with their second album, Nevermind}. That same year, the band released its third album, Liar}. In 1993, the group was relatively quiet, releasing only the "Lash"} single.

Early in 1994, the Jesus Lizard} released a one-shot album on Giant Records} called Show}, their first appearance on a major label. The fact that the Jesus Lizard} released a record on a major label caused tension between the band and their longtime producer, Steve Albini}, who was notorious for his indie-centric beliefs. Although he produced Down}, the group's final Touch & Go} album, he severed ties with the band by the time the record was released in the fall of 1994.

In 1995, the Jesus Lizard} signed with Capitol Records} and the band toured with Lollapalooza} 1995. At one of the shows on the tour, David Yow} was arrested for exposing himself on-stage. Later in 1995, the group recorded their major-label debut. The resulting album, Shot}, was released on Capitol} in the spring of 1996. Blue} followed in 1998; in mid-1999, the Jesus Lizard} disbanded. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, All Music Guide

The Jesus Lizard Biography / The Jesus Lizard Information

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