Book Notes: “Disco’s Out… Murder’s In!” (2015)

Rufus F.

Rufus is an American curmudgeon in Canada. He has a PhD in History, sings in a garage rock band, and does many things. He is the author of the forthcoming book "The Paris Bureau" from Dio Press (early 2021).

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5 Responses

  1. Aaron David says:


    I grew up in the farthest south part of northern California, indeed, five miles down the road you knew you were in Socal. And you ran into OC warskins. I graduated high school in ’89, so a hair younger than much of this, but it was definitely around. Seeing Mike Ness shoot up when you are 15 lets you know things aren’t as described on the box. That said, there were always rumors of things such as this in the background, though I as a complete skeptic usually rolled my eyes. Usually. Years latter I ran into a goth I knew at the same time (small town blues, anyone outside the norm was accepted; goth, punk, skin, hippy, to a greater or lessor degree) He had become a prison guard. And more than a few punks I know joined the army, especially post 9/11. Others, like you, got a doctorate, more just moved on with life, like me.

    I will probably pass on the book, though it makes me think of Dogtown and Z Boys. That and Fuck You Heros. And though I am sure you have read it, Legs McNeil’s book Kill Me Now touches on much of the tragidy of early punk (Tom Verlains story being particulary interesting) Also, We Got the Nuetron Bomb is worth the time.Report

  2. Rufus F. says:

    I’ve heard Jack Grisham’s book is good and I liked We Got the Neutron Bomb. The book on Darby Crash and the Germs, Lexicon Devil, is absolutely great.Report

  3. Maribou says:

    Fascinating. Not sure I’ll manage reading the book itself (tend to veer away from true crime even when it intersects with my other interests), but I really appreciated your take on it.Report

  4. LeeEsq says:

    There seem to be some people who are just wild. They want to live life as intensely as possible and damn anything that gets in the way. For the most part this is fine because their wildness is expressed in ways that don’t hurt others besides themselves for the most part. The worst other people have to deal with is preening from the wild ones, who tend to have a lot of contempt for people who want a tamer, more orderly life. Some wild people are dangerous to others though like the above illustrated example. Their wildness is expressed in the most brutal and violent way possible.Report

  5. veronica d says:

    Sounds pretty great. I love subculture books that show the ugly side, although this sounds like the ugly side is maybe a bit over the top. I dunno.

    Myself, I definitely fall into the banal “punk rock saved my life” narrative, although in my case it’s more “punk rock saved me from sadsack suburban ennui.” In other words, I owned a skateboard and liked Minor Threat. Whatever. It was fun. In some ways I think it prepared me for being queer. It certainly saved me from terminal boredom.

    Although honestly I should instead have just come out as trans and started my life then instead of now. I dunno. The 80’s punk scene was kinda the low point of cool queer punk. I did the best I could.

    I’ll add the book to my queue, just cuz I like stuff like this.

    Live kinda fast! Die middle aged!Report