Although its not usual to hear rock-n-rollers discuss taboo subjects, Austin, TX-based Crust took obsession with filth to a whole new level, by discussing such themes as head lice, chlamydia and general pain associated with life at the bottom (with their traveling experience serving as a source of inspiration). The band also was known for their weird stage antics and their instruments, which included feedback devices, tape loops and found objects (in addition to regular guitar, bass, keyboard setup).
John Hawkins, Richard Smith (formerly a drummer for Miracle Room and a member of Bontempi Bros) and Jerry Page started out in ’87 under the name Mud Honey, but later changed their name to Crust in order to avoid confusion with Seattle act of that name. Shortly after their formation, they contributed two tracks to a compilation called “The Polyp Explodes” (on Butterylicious Productions label), which also included tracks by ST37, Ed Hall and Seemen, among others.
In the early 90s, they became a first band to sign to King Coffey’s (Butthole Surfers) label Trance Syndicate Records. They went on to produce numerous CDs and LPs for the label, including self-titled album (1991) and 1994 “Crusty Love” LP, before breaking up in 1997.
In their review of “Crusty Love” album All Music Guide concluded that the album is “yet another reason Texas should be its own nation”, since the band’s “campily gritty rock-outs are drenched in enough slop and snot and nastiness to have a serious appeal, even when the band is rehashing Cramps attitudes and rockabilly riffs.” Trouser Press commented “without losing its delusional down-and-out scariness, the music” on “Crusty Love” “has real force, comparable to Alice Donut and Cop Shoot Cop but infinitely more disturbing.”
The band reunited once again for a 2004 sold-out show at Room 710 club in Austin (that year also saw the reunion of Richard Smith former band Bontempi Bros). Their third (and final) full-length “Food Eater” is available only as mp3 download, since the band was unable to find a proper label to release the record.
Richard Smith (Miracle Room)
Sacred Heart Of Crust 12″ (Trance Syndicate, 1990)
Crust LP (Trance Syndicate, 1991)
Feelings 7″ (Trance Syndicate, 1991)
Crusty Love CD / LP (Trance Syndicate, 1994)
Food Eater mp3 (Not On A Label)
“Black Tuesday“+ “Traveling With Berlitz” + “Sack Lunch” on Polyp Explodes (Butterylicious Productions, 1988)
“Hard Stool” on Love & Napalm Vol.1 (Trance Syndicate, 1990)
“Traveling With Berlitz” on Love & Napalm Vol.2 (Trance Syndicate, 1991)
“Dealer Mike” + “Desperate Cries” + “Traveling With Berlitz” on Love & Napalm (Trance Syndicate, 1993)
“All Or Nothing At All” on Chairman Of The Board (Grass, 1993)
“Weekend Bell” on ¡Cinco Años! (Trance Syndicate, 1995)
MP3: Black Tuesday / Traveling With Berlitz / Sack Lunch
Chlamydia Is Not A Flower