Saturday, August 4, 2012

185. The Stooges. 1969 but not as you know it.

Album: The Stooges
Artist: The Stooges
Genre: Rock
Year: 1969

  1. 1969
  2. I Wanna Be Your Dog
  3. We Will Fall
  4. No Fun
  5. Real Cool Time
  6. Ann
  7. Not Right
  8. Little Doll

Back in 1969 Dylan was simplifying his sound and releasing the quietly country affected Nashville Skyline, The Beatles were trying to return to simple roots while they recorded Let it Be and CSN, The Grateful Dead and others were trying to get back to America's roots with a folkier sound. The rock world seemed to be turning its back on the musical excesses. Meanwhile the Stooges were in a studio somewhere recording... this.

The Stooges doesn't sound like 1969. It sounds like something directly influenced by a band reacting against music from 1969. It's loud, dissonant, noisy and all over the place. It kicks off with two exciting rock and roll tracks that spring quick-fire out of your speakers and become more fun with each repeated listen. And then it dumps 10 minutes of slow dirging in your lap. Track three is called We Will Fall and features Iggy ranting a bit of over a viola drone supplied by producer John Cale and a repetitive chant kept up by the rest of the band that sounds like someone trying to hypnotise themselves to sleep.

The fact that this album ranks higher than Fun House seems to prove that this list favours influence over quality. According to all the research I could do, the vast majority of Stooges fans rank Fun House as a better release than their debut and I'm inclined to agree. Iggy Pop sounds a lot better on Fun house and is a big part of the attraction. On The Stooges he sounds a lot more restrained and tentative, like he still hasn't broken away from the conventions of sixties rock. The fact that ten minutes are taken up with what sounds like Cale's attempts to turn The Stooges into The Velvet Underground Mk 2 doesn't help either.

I enjoyed The Stooges but was mildly disappointed having expected it to be better than Fun House. Don't go listening to it making the same mistake I did.

Influenced by: The Velvet Underground
Influenced: The Red Hot Chilli Peppers

Highlight: I wanna Be Your Dog
Lowlight: We Will Fall

Favourite Amazon Customer Review Quote: "The ten-minute-plus "We Will Fall" is like waking up to find out that sweet little hippie girl from the night before drugged you and left you at a particularily sinister cult compound."

-Strange analogy but I kind of like it.

So are you a fan or do you just feel Stooged? Let me know below

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