Career As a Jerk, out next week on MVD,
chronicles the legendary Cali
punks’ rise, fall and demise. Fans of the currently-touring Off! will also find
much to cheer. Watch trailers, below.
Markey, the guy who did The Year Punk
Broke (and several other films) returns here with a documentary on LA’s
legendary Circle Jerks. It’s told mostly through the eyes and mouths of
founding members vocalist Keith Morris (now currently fronting Off!) and
guitarist Greg Hetson (also in Bad Religion), although there’s quite a
bit of chatter from original drummer Lucky Lehrer, too. In between these
interviews is plenty of classic live footage from nearly every Los Angeles punk venue.
had nearly forgotten how great of a rhythm section that Lehrer and bassist
Roger Rogerson were – Lehrer especially, a truly unique drummer, especially in
the punk scene. The band also boasted, later on, Earl Liberty on bass and Chuck
Biscuits on drums. In the film bassist Zander Schloss shows up (as does Flea,
who held down the bass position for a short time), who discusses his tenure in
the band, along with drummer Keith Clark, in the late ‘80s; about the band’s
foray into metal; Morris’ near-crippling battle with drugs and alcohol; and so
on, until the end. There aren’t too many talking heads here, which is
refreshing for a change; in their place are Henry Rollins, Brian Baker, Greg
Graffin, J Mascis and Frontier Records head honcho Lisa Fancher.
the final breakup of the band – which led to the starting of Off! – ends the
doc on a sad point. But throughout there’s plenty of info and footage for any
self-respecting punk to sink his teeth into and then some. Well done.