Keith Morris is one of the remaining original punk rock figures that is still going and has never really ceased to have an impact on what is widely perceived to be punk and hardcore at large.
With a career spanning over four decades as the frontman of genre coining outfits not Circle Jerks, Black Flag and more recently OFF, he has seens it all – physical ailments, the peaks and valleys of the music industry, addiction in all shades and variations and he has survived to tell the tales.
Despite My Damage being told through the subjective lense of Morris, it sheds light on the emergence of a scene, how it moved to become palatable to the mainstream, success and losses as well as other luminaries who started out around the same time as Morris and eventually became mainstream icons and rock gods.
My Damage is a no-holds barred engaging autobiography who has come out of the mist of debauchery and the violence of the early west coast punk movement based on the recollections of someone who has been there, done that, made more than a few bad decisions and survived to tell the tale.
Starting off with his childhood under a hardened father via his formative years that lay the cornerstone for his musical endeavours to interesting, his struggle with self-imposed ailments, at times hilarious encounters with what would eventually become the staple of entities like MTV and ultimately the formation of his current band OFF!, that proves to be more than relevant both within and outside the confines of punk rock and alternative music circles.
One does however not have to be overly familiar with Morris’ oeuvre, The Circle Jerks, Black Flag or the genesis of the west coast punk rock scene in general to get enjoyment out of this book as it is an interesting for anyone remotely interested in the inner workings, the machinations and manipulations of the music industry and a cautionary tale for those having fallen prey to the notion of achieving the lofty heights of rock stardom.
7.0 / 10
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