Lux Interior, the frontman for iconic punk band The Cramps, died today, February 4th, at the Glendale Memorial Hospital in Glendale, California. Interior, born Erick Lee Purkhiser, was 60 and is survived by his wife of 37 years, Cramps guitarist Kristy “Poison Ivy Rorschach” Wallace. In a statement released by the band’s publicist, a preexisting heart condition is named as the cause of death.
The Cramps were credited with creating both the term and musical style “psychobilly,” a synthesis of punk rock and rockabilly that was gloriously raw and over the top. Their lyrics examined American culture at its most campy, often citing bad jokes, science fiction films, and sexual fetishes.
Kurt Loder wrote, “This is rock & roll the way it never really was on the radio, but the way you always dreamed it could be — drooling horrorama lyrics, great cheesoid guitar riffs, postlobotomy drum-bashing and a singer for whom inhibition is the dirtiest ten-letter word of all. Slurp it up, sleaze fans.”
Rock’n’roll is so great that everyone in the world should think it’s the greatest thing that’s happening. If they don’t, they’re turds ~ Lux Interior