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In The Fascist Bathroom / Edition 1

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Overview

Was punk just another moment in music history, a flash in time when a group of young rebels exploded in a fury of raw sound, outrageous styles, and in-your-face attitude? Greil Marcus, author of the renowned Lipstick Traces, delves into the after-life of punk as a much richer phenomenon—a form of artistic and social rebellion that continually erupts into popular culture.

In more than seventy short pieces written over fifteen years, he traces the uncompromising strands of punk from Johnny Rotten to Elvis Costello, Sonic Youth, even Bruce Springsteen. Marcus's unparalleled insight into present-day culture and brilliant ear for music bring punk's searing half-life into deep focus. Originally published in the U.S. as Ranters and Crowd Pleasers.

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Editorial Reviews

The Times
The dean of rock criticism, Greil Marcus, has been analysing the populist and the impenetrable for 30 years. This reissued collection includes features from times past, when Rolling Stone covered obscure British bands, gloomy discourses on Eighties American politics and Greil's exasperation with Springsteen and Costello.
Rolling Stone

There isn't a bland sentence or obligatory opinion in this book. Brittle, lyrical, funny, outraged and for all the untouched bases, remarkably whole, [In the Fascist Bathroom] has the feel of a vital fin de siècle document. It argues that the willful negations of punk have cleared the way for a reconstructed value system at the edge of the abyss. On the twin strengths of his intellectual rigor and moral fervor, Marcus muscles up to Armageddon.
— Matt Damsker

London Magazine

Marcus, at his best, wrote and still writes about punk in a way that is as startling, as deceptively simple, and as moving as the music itself.
— Nick Pemberton

Village Voice

[As with] Adorno, and before him Wittgenstein and Nietzsche, Marcus's forte is the aphorism. This approach suits both his prose style-elegant, magisterial, economical-and his subject matter: rock is about the moments, specifically about fixing them in mind as they die, and Marcus was the first to say as much.
— Ann Marlowe

Metro (San Jose)

His work develops history, as if it were a photo, in front of your very eyes. The essays are like the two-minute bursts of energy in so many of the songs he lauds; short and sharp, constantly stimulating, sometimes sad, more often elegiac, always endowed with the hope that humanitarian anger inspires.
— Gina Arnold

Rolling Stone - Matt Damsker
There isn't a bland sentence or obligatory opinion in this book. Brittle, lyrical, funny, outraged and for all the untouched bases, remarkably whole, [In the Fascist Bathroom] has the feel of a vital fin de siècle document. It argues that the willful negations of punk have cleared the way for a reconstructed value system at the edge of the abyss. On the twin strengths of his intellectual rigor and moral fervor, Marcus muscles up to Armageddon.
London Magazine - Nick Pemberton
Marcus, at his best, wrote and still writes about punk in a way that is as startling, as deceptively simple, and as moving as the music itself.
Matt Groening
Greil Marcus is the only writer I'd trust to explain what all that horrible screaming, vile spitting, and great punk music was really all about.
Village Voice - Ann Marlowe
[As with] Adorno, and before him Wittgenstein and Nietzsche, Marcus's forte is the aphorism. This approach suits both his prose style-elegant, magisterial, economical-and his subject matter: rock is about the moments, specifically about fixing them in mind as they die, and Marcus was the first to say as much.
Metro (San Jose) - Gina Arnold
His work develops history, as if it were a photo, in front of your very eyes. The essays are like the two-minute bursts of energy in so many of the songs he lauds; short and sharp, constantly stimulating, sometimes sad, more often elegiac, always endowed with the hope that humanitarian anger inspires.
Rolling Stone
There isn't a bland sentence or obligatory opinion in this book. Brittle, lyrical, funny, outraged and for all the untouched bases, remarkably whole, [In the Fascist Bathroom] has the feel of a vital fin de siècle document. It argues that the willful negations of punk have cleared the way for a reconstructed value system at the edge of the abyss. On the twin strengths of his intellectual rigor and moral fervor, Marcus muscles up to Armageddon.
— Matt Damsker
Village Voice
[As with] Adorno, and before him Wittgenstein and Nietzsche, Marcus's forte is the aphorism. This approach suits both his prose style-elegant, magisterial, economical-and his subject matter: rock is about the moments, specifically about fixing them in mind as they die, and Marcus was the first to say as much.
— Ann Marlowe
London Magazine
Marcus, at his best, wrote and still writes about punk in a way that is as startling, as deceptively simple, and as moving as the music itself.
— Nick Pemberton
Metro (San Jose)
His work develops history, as if it were a photo, in front of your very eyes. The essays are like the two-minute bursts of energy in so many of the songs he lauds; short and sharp, constantly stimulating, sometimes sad, more often elegiac, always endowed with the hope that humanitarian anger inspires.
— Gina Arnold
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780674445772
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press
  • Publication date: 3/15/1999
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 452
  • Product dimensions: 0.91 (w) x 5.50 (h) x 8.50 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction

Prologue: The End of the 1960s

Two Late Beginnings

Johnny Rotten and Margaret Drabble

The End of an Antichrist: Sex Pistols, Winterland, San Francisco, 14 January 1978

1977-1979

Elvis Costello: The Old Waldorf, San Francisco, 16 November 1977

The Clash

Doom Squad

From 1979, Remove 7, Add Zero to 9, Then Wait

Dead Air

Live at the Roxy

Gang of Four

Logic

Rock Death in the 1970s: A Sweepstakes

1980

Fear in the Marketplace: Real Life Rock Top Ten 1979

Hi, this is America.

War in the Catamaran

Plague Disco

Ripped to Shreds

It's Fab, It's Passionate, It's Wild, It's Intelligent! It's the Hot New Sound of England Today!

Love and Death in the American Novel

Elvis Costello's Bill of Rights

The Roots of Punk, #783

Yes Nukes

Success and Failure in the Wilderness

Suspicious Minds

The Next President of the United States

1981-1982

Life and Life Only

Songs of Random Terror: Real Life Rock Top Ten 1980

Ideal Home Noise

Crimes Against Nature

The Au Pairs in Their Time

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

Charts of the Gods

Food Fight: Real Life Rock Top Ten 1981

Life After Death

Dial Twisting

from Elvis Costello Repents: The Rolling Stone Interview

Badlands

1983-1985

The Mekons Story

In the Fascist Bathroom

Free Speech, #1

Imperial Margarine

Gone with the Wind

Four More Years

400,000 More Years

Corrupting the Absolute

Number One with a Bullet

Less Than Zero

The Last President of the United States

1986

Alone and Forsaken

The Last Broadcast

King of Nebraska

Flat, Toneless and Tiresome

Hum-drum

Sand in Your Mouth

U.S.A. Combat Heroes

The Return of King Arthur

Free Speech, #2

1987-1992

Born Dead

The Return of Iron Butterfly

Judgment Day

Music

More Bad News

Groovy Hate Fuck

Punk Is Where You Find It

An Echo

The Assassin

Chapters from History

Three Premature Endings

The Return of the Ranter

The End of the 1980s

The Return of the Antichrist

Epilogue: A Brief Return of the 1960s: Real Life Rock Top Ten Spring 1991

I am a Cliché

Citations

Acknowledgments

Permissions

Index

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2002

    The Punk subculture comes to life

    This book relates the underground music we know as punk and how it emerged to the mainstream where it was met with hostility and desparity.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 15, 2001

    BOOO

    This book was very disappointing. I thought that it would be enjoyable and an easy read. It was very jumpy and I lost interest in what the author was saying many times. HORRIBLE

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2000

    Underground vs. Mainstream

    Punk music should have always been underground and independent. The mainstream never let these bands grow up and so they died... this book is well written and a nice read for aspiring p-rocker musicians. It was good, but not great.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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