The Klitz - Rocking The Memphis Underground 1978-1980
There’s really no way to say this but this archival release has pretty much anything you could ever want in found sound. The Klitz’s active period was incredibly brief (2 insane years in Memphis) and they never released a proper 7”, EP or LP in their day but the recordings they made with Alex Chilton and Jim Dickinson have it all. Catchy and primitive post-punk, loose no-wave ramblings and perhaps best of all, unhinged and disaster-ready covers of the likes of The Cramps, Rolling Stones, The Beatles, The Troggs and Chilton himself.
While Chilton and Dickinson helped get them started, the 4 women of The Klitz made a name for themselves with scrappy live performances during the height of Memphis’ music scene. Their studio recordings capture their primal ethos and arty sensibilities while working in some mind-blowing, yet lo-fi, effect-heavy chaos. On stage, they seemed to thrive as well. They got some attention from IRS Records and would even travel to New York to open for The Cramps but the lack of marketability due to their name ultimately spelled failure. Band turmoil resulted in a breakup by 1980.
Rocking The Memphis Underground tells the tale of The Klitz as it should be. All of their studio recordings line up on Side A, while Side B shows off their brash, loose and endearingly unprofessional live shows. This ones’ a year-ender for sure. (Dom)
Check out a track here and this wonderful documentary here.