Tower Grove Inferno, ’79


There was an interesting part, in both their proto-careers when Michael Keaton & James Belushi almost starred in the same sit-com about roommates, perhaps in the industrial brown-stone civic beer-hall of Pittsburgh. Or maybe “it was Cincinnati”.

But that sort of blue-collar/ethnic comedy? Speak to me about the run-down, Democratic cities and you wouldn’t have to tunnel “too deep into the netherworld” to find yourself in good ole’ south St. Louis.

Lots of beer breweries, mesh baseball caps, handle-bar mustaches, and gonzo Jim Henson Children’s Television Workshop value “this side of Cheech n’ Chong….. Ted Nugent’s “Cat Scratch Fever” wailing on the record player as they knock back dark-brown Busch bottles.

Furniture? Thy name is a milk-crate and a big-bellied, droop-earlobed plaster Buddha statue like an altar to pot and “DEATH TO DISCO”, if not an amateur herpatologist’s snake-cage humming in the corner under a pink light as simple house-plants beat in the pungent breeze by the sun-dappled window and smell of BBQ’d pork steaks.

Call it “the crash pad”…… eeking out a hole-in-the-wall existence amid the tumbled, jutting-up sidewalk where weeds grow in-between the cracks like Popsicle juice and New Left murals of peace & togetherness, ecumenical Cathedral mass and the bleeding thorns of Italian-Roman Jesus and hokey parochial school by the scratching quill of St. Aquinas.

You’d better believe it…… your day-job at ole’ “Channderson Electric” like something out of DANTE’S INFERNO with trenches of molten-metal and flying-sparks. Your roommate, in mustard-yellow and green coveralls smelling of fried wires and arc-welded ozone.

And Friday? A good ole’ party. Beetlejuice will see you there as he crashes on someone’s couch like some foul, work-shy scheme by which a dream floats like armpit stench and dark circles under his eyes. It’s the night-shift in the morgue, if you working-stiff’s didn’t know enough to gather your beer-bottles close “from free-loader’s” and faster, ingratiating talk.

Does anybody know this guy? He just “sort of showed-up” and no one knows for sure…..

And this is for all you animals, INFERNO-ROOM style at the ole’ Delta House. Don’t be “that guy”…..

Tower Grove Inferno, ’79

Creepy Crawl Punk Venu


If it’s anything St. Louis has no shortage of—it’s the various small-dive punk clubs. Some open, some close—R.I.P. as rents go up with the gentrifying neighborhoods. Your best bet is something in the shuttered industrial-district on the grimy edge of city limits, a rose-carving in a wrought iron-gate for the dank atmosphere of auto-exhaust and the sewers.

Cheap shows– $10 for a night of mayhem, if the bands on the bill aren’t terribly well-known.

You have a thrasher, maybe a left-wing skinhead from the old Eastern bloc countries who weaves through the audience in a green bomber jacket, his boots laced-up with red anti-fa shoelaces. Punk is maybe an open-minded series of observations, individually subjective for all the strange flavors of variety. He looks like “that guy from Anthrax”, as you could only be referring to Scott Ian, like earnest gung-ho driftwood and goofy-foot guitar hopping like cargo shorts and raked guitar strings.

You also have “wise-guys” with the sly, perceptive art of observation. Maybe he’d be a cartoonist or just a clerk at 7-Eleven. View-askew, a cap turned sideways and a clever t-shirt of some scribbled vintage. His state is constant bemusement through a pair of pop-eyed glasses.

Don’t forget the crew of goth chicks, skin as pale as cottage-cheese in the artsy, performance-based world of witchcraft and “large, in-charge” antics. She definitely knows what she wants, the raven-haired streak of appetite and life-force like a fish tank of gleaming glass beads and murkier smells of paint and incense. Pick one or the other, like sisters differentiated slightly by personality but still wonderfully mysterious.

You have the blonde, dreadlocked stoner and “outside-the-box” thinker with a tragic overbite and clenched, silent intent hanging his arms out of his Rastafarian shirt colors for a hop and kick of the hackey-sack. . . . . a game of ultimate-frisbee. Attention Deficit Disorder as the mild, silent-type who fits the bill of all stoner-lore and comic-relief.

And there’s a sour, chirpy lark who’s small but as overflowing with punch as an atomic warhead for chewing gum and eyes lighting up with mischief. Contrarian and street-wise like a pill of cyanide, swallowing a straw of pixie-stix and flailing around until she collapses from a blown-out sugar-high and gets back on the stage to do it again, diving back in the pit.

These would be Lydia’s friends. . .. . . a gang of indie-media slackers living off their parents’ largess and in the artistic lifestyle of alt-rudderless experience. Where Lydia goes, they go—fleshing out this Beetlejuice 2 movie as the plot coalesces in a strange world and becomes a film.

You will here more about them. . . . . the St. Louis experience. Stay tuned!


Creepy Crawl Punk Venu

Trivia to Make Your Head Spin

Hello, everybody. . . . .

More antic madness from “The Gong Show” with a parody band known as “Green Jello”– famous for a video-only album of grotesquely bonkers/bogus metal-tunes and the best video-studio effects you could have in the early ’90s with Claymation and foam-rubber monsters. Later forced to change their name to “Green Jelly” because “Jello” is copyrighted by Krafts Foods Inc. But the songs on the “Cereal Killer” album were unchanged– even referring themselves as “Green Jello”.

Otherwise, the lyrics “wouldn’t have rhymed” and they weren’t about to re-record their album, say with overdubs. Just a minor footnote in creative skater/stoner history as their influence is handed down to me, this day– from the age of 12 as that was one of my first metal albums other than cheap $2.99 compilation cassette-tapes at the ole’ clearance and “odd lots, BIG LOTS” store down on the rough side of south St. Louis.

Hey, you get what you pay for. . . . . . and here are two articles full of well-researched trivia and other background information about the original Beetlejuice movie.

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll hurl– your head will spin with production notes! All in bringing to you the best possibilities, living-up to a Beetlejuice sequel worthwhile.

We’ll be back, three shakes of a lamb’s tail. . . . . . so hold on to your temples and (don’t you hate it when that happens?) and see the world through a work-horse of bloggership, building steam like pistons unto my dream project.

See you in the funny pages.

Trivia to Make Your Head Spin