Tag Archives: Green River

Jeff Ament’s former band Deranged Diction (aka Montana’s first hardcore band) to reunite at the Crocodile Friday

deranged diction

Before Jeff Ament was in a small little band called Pearl Jam (a band that may, or may not, be headlining Bumbershoot this year) he was in Montana’s first hardcore band called Deranged Diction.

The band featured Ament, Jon Donahue, and Bruce Fairweather in Montana and Rod Moody joined up when the band made it to Seattle. Deranged Diction played its last show 25 years ago and after breaking up its members helped spawn Green River, Mudhoney and, of course, Pearl Jam. The band will return to the stage Friday at the Crocodile for the first time in 25 years to celebrate the release of its double-disc "Life Support/No Art, No Cowboys, No Rules."

The first disc, "Life Support" features 10 songs written between 1983-34. The second disc "No Art, No Cowboys, No Rules" is a rerecording of the band’s demo tape from 1982-83. You can read more about Deranged Diction here.

Here’s the story of the Deranged Diction, as told by Jeff Ament:

Missoula, Montana, 1981-83


Jon Donahue and I met Bruce Fairweather skateboarding the brick banks at the University of Montana in September of 1981. Within a month, we were rehearsing as Deranged Diction with Bill the drummer, playing songs by Black Flag, 999, the Dead Kennedys, the Ramones and the Clash. We played a half dozen shows that school year, mostly with new drummer Sergio Avenia, with a summer assignment to write some of our own songs.


Fall quarter 1982, Jon moved back to California, so we needed a new singer. Tom Kipp approached us and we wrote and recorded our first batch of songs which included “Pruning” which ended up on a compilation called “We Got Power” and the Flipper-inspired “Periscope.” Tim Healy took over vocals in March of 1983 and we wrote and recorded six new songs, including “Only” and “I’m an Amerikan.” We put these songs on a cassette called “No Art, No Cowboys, No Rules” and sold and traded them through fanzines like Maximum Rock and Roll and Flipside.


Seattle, Washington, 1983-84


Sergio, Bruce and I decided to move to Seattle in May of 1983 with the idea of finding a new singer for our band. We put a “singer wanted” ad in the Rocket and our first tryout with Rod Moody was a great fit, and he played guitar which gave us a bigger heavier sound. We wrote 10 new songs with Rod and played shows at the Metropolis with the Butthole Surfers, Husker Du, Ill Repute, Stalag 13 and local Seattle bands the Accused, Malfunkshun, the Rejectors and the Silly Killers. In early 1984, I quit the band to join Green River with Mark, Steve and Alex. Unfortunately, we never recorded a song.


Seattle, Washington, 2008

I ran into Rod at Easy Street Records and reminisced about our days in Deranged Diction and he mentioned having a rehearsal tape of the songs we wrote together. I listened and we thought it was a shame that we never recorded those songs. Rod and I approached Bruce and Sergio about recording those songs. We went into Avast studios and recorded and mixed it in 4 days in the spirit of how we might have done it 24 years earlier. It was a blast playing with my old friends again and it’s sounds pretty damn good, if I say so myself.


Jeff Ament, formerly Jeff Diction

With all that history it sure seems like it will be a good time Friday night at the Crocodile. And it is nice to see all the Pearl Jam guys getting their creative juices flowing in preparation for the upcoming tour cycle behind their ninth album, which is set to be released this year.

Matt Cameron has his jazz project Harrybu McCage, Mike McCready has his Hendrix tribute group Shadow 86, Stone Gossard is doing his country band thing with his Hank Khoir and Eddie will embark on a brief solo tour this summer.

Tickets cost $10.

Pics from last weekend’s SP 20 at Marymoor Park

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I have a Flickr page that is filled to the brim with tons of photos of rock shows. I usually bring my point-and-shoot camera with me whenever I go to a show and I try to get a photo credential so I can spend some time in the photo pit and get my Charles Peterson on.

On my Flickr page you will find pics of Green River, Kinski, Comets on Fire, Wolf Parade and other bands that performed at last weekend’s SP 20 (which was awesome btw). You’ll also find pics of Flogging Molly, Radiohead, The Pixies, Beastie Boys and more. There are two sets of Sp 20 pics, one is here and the other is here.

So if you want to scope out some amateur rock photography, or if you are just looking to waste some time at work on a Thursday, click on over and check it out.

My most recent trip to the record store

I was in Seattle yesterday and whenever I make a trip west of the mountains I always try to drop in to an indie record store. You wouldn’t believe how frustrating it is being a music journalist living in a city where there aren’t any decent record stores within 100 miles or so. All I can say is thank goodness for iTune and Amazon. But for every Amazon or iTunes purchase I try to balance out the negative effect it may have on local record shops by picking up music from a Sonic Boom, Easy Street, Everyday Music or other brick and mortar indie shop.

Anyway, I dropped into Sonic Boom in Ballard Monday and snagged myself some tunes. Here’s what I picked up:

Green River “Dry As A Bone/Rehab Doll”
I am a pretty big Pearl Jam fan and I enjoy Mudhoney, but surprisingly I had never heard Green River prior to picking up this album. I bought in celebration of Sub Pop’s 20th birthday, but I would have likely bought this one some time down the road regardless. After giving this album about a half a dozen spins all I can say is that if my future child ever asks me “Daddy, what was grunge?” I will play this album cranked to 11. I won’t go as far to say that this is the best Sub Pop release ever or anything like that, but I will say I think “Dry As A Bone/Rehab Doll” embodies all that is grunge a whole lot better than any other Seattle band has released.

Mudhoney “The Lucky Ones”
Yep, another grunge band. Perhaps the last grunge band standing really, considering Pearl Jam fell out of the grunge genre after releasing “Vitalogy.” This is the fourth Mudhoney record in my collection (March to Fuzz, Touch Me I’m Sick and Every Boy Deserves Fudge are the other three). I haven’t listened to the whole thing yet, but from what I’ve heard this record is typical Mudhoney with loud guitars and kickin grooves.

Stevie Wonder “Inner Visions”
I’m going to see Stevie Friday night and I don’t own this album so I jumped at the chance to add this classic to my collection. Even though I know all the songs and I have heard the album dozens of times during my childhood, it just seemed like a record I needed to have in my collection.

Common Market “Black Patch War”
A seven-song EP that is a concept record by one of my favorite Seattle hip hop groups. The duo of MC Ra Scion ad DJ Sabzi won me over at Sasquatch! 2006 during the hailstorm when thier set was canceled. Instead of not performing, Sabzi pulled his car up to the exit of the Gorge and bumped a CD of beats while Ra Scion rapped over them without a microphone IN THE HAIL. It was awesome. This EP is ambitious and is a good gap filler before the duo’s second full-length “Tobacco Road” is released in September.

Grynch “My Second Wind”
I caught this young rapper’s set at ReverbFEST last year and thought there was lots of potential in his rhyme-slinging abilities. I met him a few weeks back during Dyme Def’s mixtape release show and got to talk with him for a bit. He’s a very bright fellow and I think that when (this is not an “if” situation) Seattle hip hop blows up, or at least makes it to the proverbial next level, Grynch will be one of the MCs on top of the game. This record, his second, puts his potential on display and has plenty of great guest appearances by local hip hop fixtures, making it a great example of just how cool it is to be experiencing local hip hop right now.

So that was my trip to the record store. I try to make one at least every other trip to Seattle that I take. I feel like I bought some great albums and I’ll fill you in on my future purchases when they are made.

Now that you know how satisfied I am with my record-shopping experience, I want to know about your last visit to the record store. What was the last good album you bought?