Sunday, April 5, 2009

Wreckless Eric and Bob Dylan

“Wreckless Eric (is) the Bob Dylan of punk rock”

Rich Tupica, The Lookout, 1/21/08

Perhaps in response to the above quoted idea, assuming it's been floated before, Wreckless Eric labeled his 1993 album, The Donovan of Trash; not Dylan, just his second-rate English imitator, Donovan, not punk rock, just pure, unadulterated Trash.

There certainly are echoes of Dylan in the stripped-down sound of this record; the blunt acoustic strumming, the crazed harmonica huffing, the threatening organ lines, the untutored but knife-sharp voice jacked high up in the mix and of course the ability to shift from tenderness to viciousness without notice.

But Wreckless Eric is a different mess, his bastardization of country, blues, jazz, rockabilly and garage rock was galvanized by punk rock, not the folk revival, even if like Dylan he's really apart from the movement that brought him into prominence. This album, released on Billy Childish's Hangman label, is a lethal piece of work, indebted to no one man or style.

Wreckless Eric - "Joe Meek"

{MRML readers please weigh in with a comment; what, if anything, does Wreckelss Eric have in common with Bob Dylan?}

Buy The Donovan of Trash


  1. I'm to wreckless to listen to Dylan...... :-D

    Best wishes from Sweden

  2. Donovan is not English....

    Best wishes from Glasgow

  3. Everyone always rags on Eric's "Born Again" phase, but I have to say "I'm No Longer A Mess (Thanks Jesus!)" is a pretty killer single...

  4. The Donovan of Trash - this is one I've been searching for!

  5. Thanks man. This album is one of the best from the man. Sobriety suits him. Cheers! Mooneyrooney

  6. dylan and wreckless eric? well if wreckless eric is the donovan of trash and donovan was an early 'new Dylan' then....i can't get it!

  7. artsider

    Thanks from Canada


    D'oh. I've left the mistake in just so this nicley-put correction stays relevant

    (though i did the correction in a later post)

    It's a mis-understood period in Eric's life and just like his mystical gypsy phase.

    Long out-of-print this one.


    Yah Sobriety just made him angrier (see the Hitsville House band post for proof).

    If I did further the argument, (which cannot be won) I suppose I'd add that Eric's discography is ever-changing in ways that baffle fans and critics alike yet there's an incredible artistic consistency in all of his work.

    But anyway...

  8. thanks for this. its a real m-f'er oof ann album. realist, heartbroken, very beautiful.
    thanks for "len bright comboo" as well--bookends nicely w/this
    will now check the hitsville house you mentioined

  9. wm perry
    Glad to compel anyone to dig into the abyss of Eric's discography.

  10. Is there anyway this one album can be re-upped? I would really enjoy listening to it.

    Thanks in advance!

    1. Unfortunately, I can't since it's become available again


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