Author: Rob Santello
Publisher: Chunksaah Records
Retail Price: 9.99
Buy on Amazon.com link
This book is a collection of diary entries kept by the Bouncing Soul’s merch guy during a couple of their recent tours. When I first began reading, I was worried. It seemed to be a poorly-written mess: all-lowercase, badly punctuated stream-of-conscious notes about mundane road life or doing drugs. At the best, it seemed like a bad attempt at sounding like a punk rock Kerouac.
But after a couple dozen pages, I got past my hangups. Although Santello doesn’t really talk about the band or the shows themselves, but focuses more on internal matters, many of his journal entries are sad, witty, or interesting. His pieces on the quirky characters he meets on the road are amusing, as are his humorous observations of the punk kids who buy t-shirts from him.
I was disappointed at first because the Souls are one of my fave bands and I was hoping to read more about them. But while reading the thoughts of a drugged-out merch boy sounds boring, I enjoyed it. It’s possible that I liked the book solely because I could relate (I merched/roadied briefly a few years ago), but I think anyone who likes perzines would dig this book. It’s introspective without being bogged down in self-absorption, and there’s enough funny pieces to keep up interest.
Bottom Line: About a soul, not the Souls.