Compared endlessly by enraptured critics to Mott the Hoople, the Velvet
Underground, Bob Dylan and the New York Dolls, Blow-Up made their debut
as teenagers in the final days of 1977. They became a fixture on the
L.A. scene, first recording for legendary indie Bomp Records and later
providing key songs for the motion pictures Up the Academy and
Flashback. Their 1984 album Easy Knowledge made best-of-the-year lists
from the likes of Mikal Gimore and Robert Christgau and they were
nominated as "Best Underground Band" at the inaugural L.A. Weekly
awards in 1987 alongside Social Distortion and Jane's Addiction.
Teenage News (1976-1980), is the companion release to Groovy Dynamite
Heavy Now (1981-1988), and covers the band's early years. It collects
demos by the formative, Berkeley-based Top Cat lineup; two rare
unreleased songs intended as a single for Bomp Records, one a version
of the New York Dolls' never recorded "Teenage News," and the original
Dead-End-Kids-on-speed take of "Hanging Out at the 7-Eleven;" live
tracks captured at the Whisky A-Go-Go and Mabuhay Gardens; and songs
used in the Mad Magazine movie Up the Academy, including "Beat the
Devil" and the oft-covered cult classic "Kicking Up a Fuss." Originally
released in 2006, and newly remastered by the group, this is the first
time Teenage News has been available to the digital market.
What they said then:
Pleasant Gehman, BAM Magazine:
"For those of you who don't know, Blow-Up formed in Berkeley but
relocated to L.A. in 1977. They made their debut at the legendary
Masque and gigged with everyone who was anyone in those days, including
Berlin, the Dead Kennedys, Jim Carroll and the Replacements. They made
quite a few singles and records, were always raved about by critics,
and played raw, raucous rock with cool pop elements. Everyone used to
say they were glam throwbacks... as in Mott the Hoople, not as in
Poison. In fact, they were such a great band and so far ahead of their
Mikal Gilmore, L.A. Herald Examiner:
"The best new garage-pop band in L.A.... Strives for transcendence in
the face of mundane fortune and finds much to affirm in that quest...
They're pretty amazing... "
Robert Christgau, Village Voice:
"In the great smart teen tradition. A Minus."
Chris Willman, BAM Magazine:
"Hip wit, funky but chic anti-style and Jagger-like swagger..."
Vocals: Jody Worth
Guitars: Bruce Nicholson (all tracks) Pat DiPuccio (6-16) Tommy Dunbar (1,2)
Keyboards: Christian Super (all) Daniel Lazerus (14,15)
Bass: David Harrington (6-9,16) Barry McBride (3,4) Matt Lee (10) Don Walton (11-15)
Drums: Art Arroyo (6-16) Doug Cater (1,2) David West (3-5,10)
Produced by Jody Worth, Bill Evans, Alan Douglas, EJ Emmons, Chaz Ramirez & Winter Lazerus