Erick Purkhiser, better known as Lux Interior, died early Wednesday (February 4) in Glendale, California, of a pre-existing heart condition. He was 62.
As the co-founder and lead singer for the Cramps, Purkhiser and his wife Poison Ivy (born Kristy Wallace) pioneered the genre of psychobilly in the '70s. Combining garage rock, rockabilly, and punk into a lowbrow, lo-fi sound all their own, the Cramps recorded and toured, with Lux Interior and Poison Ivy as its only constant members, for close to 35 years.
The band's career arguably peaked in the 1990s, when its song "Bikini Girls With Machine Guns" (1990) hit the Top 40 in the U.K. Inexplicably, the Cramps appeared on Beverly Hills, 90210 in 1995, in a Halloween episode that featured the songs "Mean Machine" and "Strange Love".
The Cramps' lineup changed often through the decades but Interior and Ivy remained the center.