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Still, most music fans outside of the Motor City area are first hearing about the Dirtbombs in articles about the White Stripes, two fans who mention the band at every possible turn. Collins has known Jack and Meg White for years, long before the Legos and unearthed marriage licenses.
"Jack was at the show last Friday night. He just finished filming this Civil War movie [Cold Mountain] in the Czech Republic, but I only talked to him for a couple of minutes." And something about Mr. White that we might not know from one of their bazillion interviews? "He has a large collection of animal heads," Collins says. "And his house is really white and red."
Collins is more eager to tell tales on another Detroit success story. "I used to work in this record store next to a used clothes shop, and every Saturday Kid Rock would come in and buy the stupidest hat they had and wear it around town. He still does, and they're horrible."
While the current tour is basically a stepping stone to the band's upcoming South By Southwest showcase, they're planning a more extensive one to support their upcoming Dangerous Magical Noise-- when it comes out, that is.
"It was supposed to come out in May, but now it looks like late August. We're still dicking around with it. But it's more garagey," laughs Collins. "We just cover a lot of White Stripes songs!" Seriously, though, he says the new CD will be more straightforward pop, dipping their toes into yet another sonic Jacuzzi. The Dirtbombs will also continue to release singles whenever they feel like it.
As for the current "return of rock" hype, Collins says he's more bemused by it than anything. "As far as I'm concerned, the bandwagon came and went without us getting on it. When all the A&R reps leave Detroit, we'll keep making the music that we've made," he says just before glancing out the window for the first time that day. "Shit, but it looks like they won't be able to leave town today, because all the roads are blocked with snow. We're screwed!"
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