The Oil Slick: Great Garage Rock Gifts

by John Grimley
Posted Nov 30, 2012 at 5:54am

The best thing about the holiday time of year is it grants you permission to shamelessly beg relatives for things you are too poor to afford yourself.

Thanks to that, it's an amazing time to expand your music collection to include those box sets or DVDs you might not have had the cash to buy at first.

Here are three items no serious garage rock fan should be without:

The White Stripes: Under Blackpool Lights

Blackpool Lights was filmed in 2004 in Blackpool's Empress Ballroom and catches the band almost a year after their incredibly popular Elephant release. The twosome bring their renowned passion and intensity to the set, and their instrumental muscles are on full display. The DVD features well-known songs ("Ball and Biscuit") and covers that would eventually become set-list staples (Dolly Parton's “Jolene”). Unfortunately, the sticker price is a little ... extreme, with prices starting at $45 on eBay. Hopefully you've kept in contact with Grandma this year.

It Came From Detroit

Showing how Detroit became synonymous with garage rock, this 2009 rockumentary features many of the groups who gave Detroit its gritty reputation, including The Gories, The Detroit Cobras, The Von Bondies and The Dirtbombs. Featuring band-member interviews and some great insider recounting of the garage rock heydays, it's as close as you can get to reliving the period. Although right now it is only available in theater screenings, watch for this DVD to come soon. In the meantime, invest in some speakers.

Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk Rock

Garage rock took a lot of cues from the British punk rock explosion of the '70s. Please Kill Me documents the bands and the clubs that made it all happen, giving us unheard of access to the people who started it and how it changed the scene forever. Featuring Iggy Pop, Joey Ramone and Danny Fields (to name a few), this book is a hell of a read for any music fan.

John Grimley writes The Oil Slick blog for GuitarWorld.com.