Thursday, January 1, 2009

January 1: The Stooges, "Funhouse"

Artist: The Stooges
Album: Funhouse
Release Date: 1970
Label: Elektra

Perhaps my favorite record in the history of recorded music, The Stooges Funhouse record is an all out assault for just over 80 minutes. The record seamlessly smashes together crushing rock music with the punishing vocal delivery of punk rock's elder statesmen, Iggy Pop.

With minimal production to get in the way, the band nearly jumps through your speakers and into your ears with their fervent musical masterpieces. The rhythm section drives each song with an intensity rarely found anywhere. Ron Ashton's guitar work embodies all that punk and hardcore guitarists aspire to achieve. As for Iggy's vocals...well, there's a reason there is only one Iggy Pop. The raw, untouched feel gives the listener a peek into how enormous the bands' live sound must have been.

Going against the grain of many albums of the time, The Stooges, decided to forgo what has now become the cliche "ballad" that plague most rock records. The album opens with "Down On The Street" and does not let up at all (unless you consider the Morrison-esque "Dirt" to be "down.") With an overwhelming sense of urgency, the mood of the album shifts from angst ridden to sensual, and from aggressive to, putting it simply, fun.

Not a single note or vocal is out of place on Funhouse and, if you've yet to experience the genius/madness of this record, do yourself a favor and remedy that situation as soon as possible!

Standout tracks: ALL OF THEM!! The title track and "1970" are my personal favorites.

1 comment:

CasCbus said...

Thanks to you, Funhouse has also jumped into my top list of all-time best! A record one should not live without!