200608241145Speaking of rock’n’roll and cartooning, LA CityBeat interview Joe Sacco on BUT I LIKE IT, his early account of touring Europe with the pre-grunge punk band The Miracle Workers. Ah, those days, we remember them well… :

Cramped conditions in their conveyance notwithstanding, this tale never reaches the depths of misery in his refugee stories, but it shares with them his eye for telling details and subtle way of revealing his subjects’ humanity … along with his own. Amid the rolling thunder of decibels and debauchery, “Long Hairâ€? offers fleeting moments of vulnerability: Trautmann’s longing for a “girl to talk toâ€? amid the parade of groupies, Mohr’s flu-fueled regret over undertaking the tour, and Sacco’s own funny/disastrous attempts to “swingâ€? with the chicks.

It also documents a nearly forgotten nanosecond of rock history: the “but they’re big in Europeâ€? era. In the late ’80s, the Miracle Workers were among a handful of L.A. acts sporting a ’60s-garage/’70s-punk aesthetic just as heavy-metal hair bands were taking over the Sunset Strip. Many couldn’t get arrested here but were adored by garage-rock-crazed crowds overseas. The Miracle Workers scored bigger local audiences than most, but they had nothing on Guns N’ Roses. Still, they shared with their bandanna-festooned rivals a love of traditional rock ’n’ roll swagger that would soon go the way of the dinosaurs, once grunge reared its greasy head.


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