These Germs Are Worth Catching

July 1st, 2009

The start of the L.A. punk scene began and ended with the Germs. The band—Darby Crash, Pat Smear, Lorna Doom and Don Bolles—first put the public on notice with the single “Forming” (with a live recording of “Sexboy” on the B side) in 1977. And while they released just one full-length album, GI, the Germs were featured in Wayne’s World director Penelope Spheeris’s ode to L.A. punk, The Decline of Western Civilization. Singer Crash committed suicide by heroin overdose, at just 22, on December 7, 1980. (His death was quickly overshadowed by John Lennon’s murder the following night.) And that would be where this story ends if it hadn’t for the Germs biopic, What We Do Is Secret. Because the three surviving bandmates were so impressed with E.R. star Shane West’s turn as Darby Crash that they decided to reunite the band with West as the singer. Check out this clip from The Decline of Western Civilization and then catch the Germs at Mercury Lounge tomorrow, July 2nd.