The Dogbones: The Dogbones

Familiar, formulaic, fabulous.

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Dogbones’ guitarist – and one might reasonably hazard a guess, Svengali – Crispin Gray is absolutely positive that he’s contrived a winning formula.

He’s secure in the knowledge that he’s stumbled upon the exact sound and image necessary to hijack the international pop zeitgeist. His unshakeable confidence is based on the fact that he’s done it before. Ergo, he can do it again.

The only practical fly in this conceptual ointment is that while the cosy old aging rock community appears increasingly comfortable with stasis and regurgitation, in order to truly pop oneself celeb – to go properly GaGa viral – you’ve got to perpetually dazzle with a degree of shiny novelty that certainly doesn’t include wearing the same jacket for 20 years.

Rather like his fictional forebear Dorian, Crispin has outwardly aged not a day since leading Daisy Chainsaw to unlikely mainstream ubiquity in ’91. He’s still got 11 on his guitar, still got the coconut-coif, and still fronting a punk-propelled, grunge-informed, psychobabble assault force of rare, compelling ferocity fronted by a garment-rending, femme screamer with profoundly dramatic, perpetually bug-eyed, throat-lacerating, murder-in-the-nursery exhibitionism issues.

They’re brilliant, obviously, but can they possibly go global in 2011? Crispin – who always felt injudiciously short-changed by the messy demise of the Chainsaw – definitely won’t be satisfied with anything less. Nor, we imagine, will his increasingly hideous portrait in the attic.

Ian Fortnam

Classic Rock’s Reviews Editor for the last 20 years, Ian stapled his first fanzine in 1977. Since misspending his youth by way of ‘research’ his work has also appeared in such publications as Metal Hammer, Prog, NME, Uncut, Kerrang!, VOX, The Face, The Guardian, Total Guitar, Guitarist, Electronic Sound, Record Collector and across the internet. Permanently buried under mountains of recorded media, ears ringing from a lifetime of gigs, he enjoys nothing more than recreationally throttling a guitar and following a baptism of punk fire has played in bands for 45 years, releasing recordings via Esoteric Antenna and Cleopatra Records.