Rust. as in, an intense grit that shaves off any patina and takes hold of one’s senses. not “tin roof! rusted”, perhaps more along the lines of “rust never sleeps”… for these songs do precisely that, often in conjunction with the album, and other same-era releases from the artists.
- “You’re Gonna Miss Me” : one of many songs, mainly from the 60s, for which much is said and it takes me al long time to hear and absorb. (The Velvets entire first album being the prime example.) I have not taken to completely to the rest of the 13th Floor Elevators catalogue, or even this album. surely, this song is in many of the songs and bands I love, but the understanding of this root (song) really sits within, along with The Who‘s song below. I just cannot get enough of this sound and intensity
- “Riding The Rails: they opened for Black Heart Procession, and this unknown band opening act was a revelation. I can say that the genre of Americana is not a strong suit, with Bill Callahan being the only categorised-as-such talent from that genre being appealing. yet, that performance, and the album, really got to me. I departed for Los Angeles soon after, and lost track of the band, until my return to San Francisco, and then attended every single concert possible.
( concert photos are available here. )
- “Jism” : few songs are played as much, or create such a religious experience live. this original version is the rustiest of them all, and the pinnacle of such rust in songs with permanence. the obsessiveness described in the lyrics furthers the rustiness like no other, and often I like to quote the line “the deeper I go, the further I fall”.
( concert photos in the IBTABA Series available thus far are here. )
- “Cherry Tree” : just before the release of Alligator, I caught a review of the album— as best as I can recall. the most idiotic of terms/genre was in one of such reviews: “Grower Rock”. what? though there is that, for any song with rustiness will grow with time in its intensity, and so did this album.
( concert photos taken as part of the IBTABA Series in the Alligator tours are here. )
- “I Can See for Miles” : like almost anyone in the late 70s, one hears The Who first via Who’s Next or Quadrophenia. both equally important companions in those first years of music independence— in that, the first listen to any album tends to be that I don’t pay attention to the guitar or vocals (sorry Hendrix, Clapton, Jeff Beck, etc.), but the bass and drums. it comes from here, even in this earlier song, perhaps their best. before “You’re Gonna Miss Me”, this was the singular song to listen to such style of Rock.
- “I Will Dare” : the entire album was a revelation, as I had drifted from “Stadium Rock” to post-punk, but nothing like this album was part of my collection or listening habits. sure, I was into REM by this time, but even them were not this mess that felt so good. not sure that I went on to like other bands in a similar vein, but there is no need… The Replacements went on to achieve that rare feat of 3 consecutive albums that are (nearly?) perfect.
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