Art Garage Punk
[spring 1977 - fall 1978]

Influences: Velvet Underground, Stooges, Marc Bolan, Free-Form Jazz

ZIG-ZAG Magazine July 14th 1979

"While not as well known as the Stooges or the MC5, Destroy All Monsters were another Ann Arbor band whose influence
far outstretched its life as an active
band. Combining art punk, free jazz, garage rock and lead singer Niagara's histrionics,
Destroy All Monsters were the hidden link between the Velvet Underground and no-wave bands like Sonic Youth.

Josh Steichmann ANN ARBOR CURRENT Sept. 2004

Destroy All Monsters as the Miller Twins experienced it was an unlikely merging of two local bands in spring 1977.
 Laurence's psych-noise band EMPOOL, and the remains of Cary & Niagara's DESTROY ALL MONSTER'S.

What started as an inventive noise-music song collage collaboration quickly became motor city's new punk rock.
Pure party hardy mentality didn't help matters any. What really brought the band into the limelight was
after guitarist Ron Asheton (X-Stooges) and bassist Michael Davis (X-MC-5) joined. At that
point the band found it's 'monster sound' and success began to unfold. Laurence & Ben can be
found on the band's first two 45rpm singles, but left shortly there after due to creative
differences. Two or their songs recorded with the band - Taken For Granite
and Broken Mirrors - 
remain buried in the can to this day.

NOTE: Two "reunion shows" at Ann Arbor's 2nd Chance took place in 1983 and that was it.

'Photo shoot' for CREAM MAGAZINE June 1978

                  Niagara                    Ron Asheton     Rob King               Michael Davis             Ben Miller     Laurence Miller   

Recorded in fall 1977 and released on IDBI
Re-released here on Cherry Red Records in 1979

Recorded in summer 1978 and released on IDBI Records Early 1979

Interview w/Cary Loren
December 2014

Cary Loren's kind response to this Interview regarding a chunk of D.A.M. history, clarifying
items overlooked in the interview which the interviewer chose not
 to include 

Laurence Miller had a band called Empool, playing free-psychedelic music -- very experimental ‘out there’ space jazz,
and worked with a revolving group of musicians. 
This was the only band we knew of doing anything similar to D.A.M.
in 1976. Niagara & I essentially merged our songs into that scene in 1977 which was a short-lived middle phase of
Our only gig was at the Underground bar in Ypsilanti, a kind of set up for getting Asheton out to see the
Everything written by the Miller brothers for D.A.M. still holds up well. 'Broken Mirrors, Taken for
Granite, Tab Machine, Destroy A.M., and You’re My Every Page'. Studio versions exist of two have never
been released —a great mystery to me. They’ve been 
held by David Keeps, the bands manager who
financed the recording sessions and he seems unlikely to release them. The Millers deserve to
have their material returned 
and heard by the public. It's unfortunate their contributions
are not given equal weight in the new 'Hot Box' set— and I feel they were also unjustly
mixed down 
on many of the tracks they play on. This is a large creative chunk
of D.A.M.'s history that still remains unrecognized.

Ron Asheton: The Stooges, Destroy All Monsters & Beyond
John Wombat Blog "From EMPOOL to D.A.M. to EMPOOL" / Ben & Laurence Miller

Part One: 17th March 2019   Part Two: 19th March 2019   Part Three: 20th March 2019


Destroy All Monsters CD
FarFetched Records 
© 2003

Postage & handling FREE within the U.S.A.

BROKEN MIRRORS CD Collection consists of rehearsals and "live" material from 1977 thru 1978, focusing mainly on the music of the Miller Brother's original songs, which have never been released. Rehearsal versions of the
two studio recordings of their songs with D.A.M. [TAKEN FOR GRANITE and DESTROY A.M.] 
which haven't
been released to this day 
are on this collection. This particular CD Collection was in fact boot-legged
immediately, found to be selling on Amazon. Paperwork was filed to get 'them' off.


BROKEN MIRRORS reflects this incarnation of Destroy All Monsters from fall 1977 to fall 1978.  In early 1977 original founders Cary Loren and Niagara would drop in on Empool rehearsals (a psychedelic free improvisation noise band incorporating analogue tape, lead by Laurence) and request we work on their own songs -- garage punk.  Eventually this imposition took hold and a loose knit hybrid group began to form.  Laurence's use of an echoplex, phaser, triggered filter and distortion (originally tagged "space guitar") graduated to playing straight-ahead rhythm guitar when Cary left the group due to personal differences in summer 1977.  My free-form alto sax playing, also run thru various electronics, became more traditional as well.  By the time Cary left, both Michael Davis (MC-5) and Ron Asheton (Stooges) had joined the band, honing a heavier metal-punk sound and we began opening up for the likes of Pere Ubu, The Ramones, and Devo to name a few.  Essentially it was one big party.  In fact, the difference between a rehearsal and a party was marginal.  We wish to thank DB, George, Hiawatha, TR, Sue, Andrea, and many others for indulging themselves in the band's vision during this time.  Due to creative differences, Laurence and I chose to leave the band shortly after completing DAM's second single in October 1978.


Fan Response after purchasing BROKEN MIRRORS CD, August 2010
I suspected the sound quality would be what it is so I was not disappointed. To hear this version of DAM before Asheton took control
is a revelation. Again, I like all incarnations of DAM, but in particular, the 70s line-ups, and this CD certainly represents the "missing link"
to what had gone before and what was to come. 
Contrary to what I have would expected, and no disrespect meant, but Ron Asheton
(and to a certain extent, Michael Davis) sounds a bit out of place on most of the tracks, and that includes The Stooges track. It's as if
he was playing something different to what the rest of the band was trying to achieve. The only place where he sounded good were
the October 1978 rehearsals.
It's too bad about the "lost" studio tracks... they are such good tracks in their rehearsal incarnations that it
would be revelatory to hear them "properly" recorded. 
I agree with your stating this particular incarnation "has gone almost entirely
unnoticed'. What a shame.  N
o disrespect meant, but I think such might not have been the case with a different vocalist and
Asheton as a band-member, versus band-leader. 
Thank you again for this... it gets a treasured place on my CD rack.

Regards, Charles

July 1948 ~ January 2009

He will always be missed

June 1943 ~ February 2012

He will always be missed

D.A.M. Performing @ KRAMER THEATRE in Detroit, fall 1977
 Laurence on guitar, Ben on alto sax

D.A.M. opening up for DEVO in Cleveland, Ohio 1978
Ben and Laurence Miller seen here playing the freakout noise
ending to Laurence's song, TURN YOUR EVERY PAGE


Michael Davis


Laurence Miller

 Ron Asheton ... Niagara ... Benjamin

BELOW ~ Benjamin Miller speaks about his experience in DESTROY ALL MONSTERS
and his current music projects, for DSI Records. Interviewed by Shaun
and videotaped by Clay Harris at the 2008 benefit for 'The Sonic
Circuits Festival' at Pyramid Atlantic, MD.

Article/interview between Ben and TRAKMARX, in 2004

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