Directions from the Outskirts of Town: Punk Rock Diaries from Nineties North America, By Welly Artcore, 316 pgs.

Jan 06, 2022

Tour diaries are usually pretty dull. Sure, there are interesting anecdotes scattered throughout, but since tours lack any kind of narrative structure, the litany of entries can get tedious: “First we went to this town, then we went to the next one,” blah, blah, blah. I wasn’t expecting much from this one, in which Welly Artcore details two tours, first as a roadie for Chaos UK in 1994, then on a 1998 tour with his band Four Letter Word. Despite coming into it with apprehension, I found myself entertained. Color photos added to the proceedings, as did the entries themselves on both tours, with multiple connections to tons of touring bands and familiar clubs. A bit of a slog at times, sure, but a labor of love that ultimately pays off. –Michael T. Fournier (Earth Island, earthislandbooks.com)

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