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Tuesday, 12 April 2016

It's Not Peculiar


I was involved in an online discussion a few days back about Husker Du- a friend put forward the suggestion that their cover of The Byrds' Eight Miles High was their best song. Debate ensued with some agreement but also a reluctance to say that their best song as a cover, especially with a pair of songwriters as gifted as Bob Mould and Grant Hart.

Their last album, Warehouse: Songs And Stories (from 1987), also caused some discussion. Made as the band were getting fully on each other's nerves (they split shortly after), Grant and Bob's songs alternate across the four sides of vinyl, with Bob getting the upper hand numerically (deliberately according to both Bob and Grant). Grant was in the grips of heroin and his drumming is a little untogether on the record while at the same time Bob has audibly stepped up his song writing. The guitar playing is a blitz throughout, jagged shards and buzzes of feedback, the melodies chiming through. The dynamics of the songs are intense too- slow build ups, faster tempo choruses, fade ins and outs, clanging chords after the song has finished. I could pick any of Bob's songs off Warehouse to illustrate the strength and depth of his talents. This one will do nicely.

It's Not Peculiar

And just in case you were wondering whether he still has it, he does. This is from his newest solo album Patch The Sky- less angry maybe, more at peace with himself, but no less contrary.

7 comments:

Walter said...

I agree that Bob Mould took over the leadership at the end of the band. And for sure his songs shine on this double record. Seem like I missed his last record and have to investigate for.

charity chic said...

We like Husker Du

The Swede said...

The version of 'Eight Miles High' is terrific, no doubt about it, but their best song? Surely not. 'Makes No Sense At All', 'Don't Want to Know If You Are Lonely', 'Sorry Somehow'..., so many great tracks.

Swiss Adam said...

It's the ferocity of the performance on Eight Miles High isn't it- maybe freed by the playing a cover?

Brian said...

The worst song from Husker Du is better than just about anything out there. It's amazing how strong Bob Mould's solo career continues to be as well. Every new release is sure to get my attention.

Echorich said...

Brian has something there. And I have to agree with Swede's selections of best moments. Mine would be Makes No Sense At All.

Dirk said...

Obviously it's 'Sorry Somehow', as The Swede correctly pointed out ....