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The Denison/Kimball Trio

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Best known for his cutting edge guitar work with the confrontational punk outfit the Jesus Lizard, Duane Denison is one of rock’s most challenging (yet oft-overlooked) guitarists. Surprisingly, Denison’s early musical interest wasn’t punk rock - as he earned a degree in classic guitar at Eastern Michigan University, and even studied with renowned classical guitarist Christopher Parkening. But at the same time, Denison also paid attention to the guitarists in such art-rock bands as King Crimson, Roxy Music, Public Image, Magazine, and Killing Joke. By the late ’80s, Denison joined up with ex-Scratch Acid members David Yow (vocals) and David Sims (bass), to form the Chicago, IL-based Jesus Lizard. With a drum machine originally supplying the backbeat, drummer Mac McNeilly was welcomed onboard in time for the group’s full-length debut, 1990’s Head. Several more independent releases followed throughout the early ’90s (1991’s Goat, 1992’s Liar, 1994’s Down), during which time the quartet built a large cult following due to their explosive live show (being championed constantly in the press by Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain didn’t exactly hurt, either).

The middle of the decade saw the Jesus Lizard sign on with Capitol Records, but after only two more releases, 1996’s Shot and 1998’s Blue, the band split up.

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