Dizzy Z

Matthew Holland, Author
Matthew Holland, Author Csbs $22 (224p) ISBN 978-1-56947-074-9
Reviewed on: 12/29/1997
Release date: 01/01/1998
A Guns 'n Roses-style rock band suffers a serious midlife crisis in Holland's observant debut. Known as Dizzy Z. to his fans, alcoholic, introspective lead guitarist David Dillinger Zimmerman has two main problems on which he ruminates at length: his appetite for self-destruction (mostly by booze) and his increasingly strained relationship with the other musicians in his hit band, Blood Cheetah. Using Dizzy as a first-person mouthpiece, Holland shows a broad knowledge of pop-music culture, and he portrays the life of a band on tour with unusual verisimilitude--maybe too much verisimilitude, as the story threatens to drown in atmospherics. But this portrait of an artist lost on the edge of his own myth is almost compelling enough to make up for this flaw. Dizzy is a sympathetically haggard guide to life on tour; readers will cheer when he flees the road for San Francisco and the brief, redeeming comfort of a good (i.e., non-groupie) woman. The preoccupations of this Dylanesque protagonist recall, very strongly, Don DeLillo's Great Jones Street. If Holland has given them a less interesting vehicle, he has credibly revisited the pitfalls of rock 'n roll fame. (Jan.)
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