The Meat Puppets’ story begins with three kids, enamored of music and immersed in the psychedelic drug culture of Arizona in the ’70s, who find their way to punk rock and painstakingly become one of the most important bands of the American underground. “We began to make such a hellacious racket that we knew we were on to something,” says returning drummer Derrick Bostrom. The Puppets went on to achieve mainstream rock stardom, with a hiatus and resurrection to follow.
At their induction into the Arizona Music & Entertainment Hall of Fame in 2017, the original lineup of the Meat Puppets – brothers Cris and Curt Kirkwood and Bostrom – joined together onstage for the first time in over two decades. Throughout a set that included era-defining songs like “Lake of Fire,” “Plateau” and “Backwater,” the chemistry was more than promising, as Bostrom isn’t shy to point out. “It was so intense that even I couldn’t deny it! I remember why we did this. It was magical.” “It was the psychedelic fuckin’ time machine,” adds Chris. “Mind-blowing.”
That rekindling has resulted in Dusty Notes (out on March 8 via Megaforce), the first Meat Puppets studio album to feature the original trio since 1995’s No Joke!. Dusty Notes also features keyboardist Ron Stabinsky, a jazz-trained virtuoso adept at any style, and Curt’s son Elmo.
“The band has been a really, really deep font of creativity,” Derek said. “Love it or hate it, hit or miss, Curt is just prodigious. They are still living the rock lifestyle; they’re not doing it by half measures. They stayed on the road. These guys are uncompromising. I consider the Meat Puppets to be a national treasure.”
Listen to a new song titled “Warranty” below: