Wednesday, July 1, 2009

D.O.A. - Talk - Action = Zero!

D.O.A. lived to play and it was on the stage that they thrived. Just read Joey Keithley's autobiography, I, Shithead there's no lengthy discussion of song-writing or even recording - it's essentially one long tour diary (and a must-read for fans). So, just before their only real break-up D.O.A. recorded the inevitable live album.
(It was the original incarnation's final days, especially their gig as Drunks On Acoustics, that inspired punk rock's most significant contribution to literature, Micheal Turner's novel, Hardcore Logo. The book, in turn, was the basis for a very good (if not truly great) film by Bruce McDonald. Joey was pretty testy about the book in an interview during filming, he had a right to be; the book is to D.O.A. what This is Spinal Tap was to Status Quo but more specific and more bleak than funny.

The performances on this 1990 live album, Talk - Action = Zero, are solid, though it's not the monster that the battle-hardened, Dave Gregg-powered version of the band would have cut a few years earlier. Fortunately, we still get to hear the band breaking free of the production excesses that marred some of their later work. Here you get a tight, speedy run-through of their catalog with an emphasis on The Early Stuff ("The Prisoner", "Liar for Hire "2 + 2" etc.) . To keep things interesting there's a blues version of "Fuck You" (or at least it starts that way), some roughed-up versions of Let's Wreck the Party material (the title track loses much of its sluggishness here) plus two unreleased songs (the none-too-inspiring "Do or Die" and "Fuck That Shit").

Download D.O.A. - Talk - Action = Zero CD

(Image borrowed from the slightly-inactive but still wonderful blog, Shpadoinkle)

Suuport the band!
Sudden Death
Alternative Tentacles

P.S. As our run celebrating the Canadian-as-fuck D.O.A winds down, I'd just like to wish you all a happy Canada Day (yup our national day is three days before the Americans.) To see 7inchpunk's selection of great Canadian punk singles (including yet more D.O.A.) click HERE.


  1. Hey Jeffen!

    The last few posts reminded me of just how crucial these guys were to my youth.

    The completely revved-up live Fuck You (with blues) they did circa '92/93 was absolutely mind blowing and a transcendental moment for me. They went back to their roots and stuck to the classics, introducing 5-8 new songs on the set lists, then encore with songs like "Nervous Breakdown" and "Full Metal Jack-off" or whatever obscurities the audience wanted like "Tits on the Beach".

    Some questions for you, do you have the Tribute to Hard Core Logo album? Was D.O.A. on it? I know it had cub's version of "Who The Hell Do You Think You Are?", but for some reason, the memory of D.O.A. doing it, sticks in my mind...

    My other question is if you know the name of the late '90's CBC movie about a all-girl, indy/punk band in Montreal about to sign to a major label with a Jaguar driving, English guy as a possible producer/manager? It had cameos by Henry Rollins and Mitsou. I remember the cub version of "Who The Hell Do You Think You Are?" was played quite a bit in it, but have no idea what it was called...

    And hope yr Canada Day was a good one!

  2. I've loved doing these posts (except for having to type the band's name over and over)b but the reader reaction has been a little skinny. Ah,well.

    Live they never dissapointed. I've heard they're still good today (A friend saw them last week and said Joey still does the headshake thing!)

    At my old job I had a play copy of the tribute to Harcore Logoa nd D.O.A. are not on it (though certainly are). They do appear in the film as part of the benefit concert. It was during the shooting of that scene that Terry-David Mulligan, interviewing everybody as if HCL were a real band, asked Joey what influence HCL had on him and he got pretty blustery and said, "Why don't you ask me what influence I had one HCL?"

    I found the original soundtrack and now I'm searching for the tribute. I may well post those one day.

    I'm pretty sure the show you're talking about is Bruce McDonald's Platinum, though I never saw it.

    It was a great day,hopefully your was as well.

    Thanks again for adding your thoughts.

  3. P.S. that one bracket should read..

    D.O.A. are not on it (though CUB certainly are).

  4. Thanks for the additional info Jeffen.

    It was Platinum. (I should have guessed it was another McDonald effort...)

    I have a vague recollection of Terry-David Mulligan doing some behind-the-scenes stuff for the Hardcore Logo hype on whatever show he had on MuchMusic at the time (New Music West?). It was mostly the filming of the real bands and crowd scenes. I'll have to watch Hardcore Logo again. Anyhow, thanks!

  5. I just spotted my VHS of HCL in the basement maybe it's time to dig it out.

    Doug from the Bonaduces was being interviewed by TDM on his MuchMusic show (it was called Much West) and Doug tried to bring up his old show,Good Rockin' Tonite, and was shut down mighty fast.

  6. Thanks a ton for posting this (along with Murder)!

    I saw D.O.A. back in September and to whoever it was that said Joey still does the head shake, it's true, however he did it less than other times I've seen them (Maybe it's because some fat dude claimed they snorted coke together) they also still do Fuck You with the Blues, but I have to say Joe can't sing it like Wimpy

  7. Yeah D.O.A. are like a force of nature - they can't be stopped. I'll have to go next time they're in Winnipeg.


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