18 March 2013

18th March - Iggy Pop's The Idiot

Artist – Album: Iggy Pop – The Idiot
Released:  18th March 1977
Sounds Like: Not quite Iggy but still great.

This may not be your typical Iggy fare, but The Idiot may just be his finest hour. If the violent spit-in-your-face music of his previous work with The Stooges went some way to laying the foundations for punk, this is the precursor to the goth rock of the likes of Joy Division, Siouxsie and the Banshees and Depeche Mode.

Nightclubbing’ celebrates hedonism as well as his hit single ‘Lust for Life’, only instead of pounding drums and rocking guitars, it’s all humming synths and slow tempo. ‘Dum Dum Boys’ is an affectionate tribute to his old bandmates, way at odds with its insensitive moniker. His take on ‘China Girl’ is far more uneasy then Bowie’s sparkly pop version, and all the more appropriate to the lyrics of unrequited love.

Personally, I’m not entirely sure where I sit on this softer side of Pop. Being the brainchild not only of the fatigued and Stooge-less Iggy, but also Berlin era Bowie – this was released between Station to Station and Low – means that it feels drugged and removed, a difficult thing to really fall for. The songs are definitely strong, and I’d go as far to say that collectively they’re better than the previously reviewed Stooges album Raw Power, but that record just excited me more. I could put up with the weaker tracks to listen to a song as incredible as ‘Search and Destroy’, a high nothing here attains.

As I said earlier, it’s not your typical Iggy fare, and it may just be his finest hour. But then it may not. You decide!

Albumaday... rating: 8/10

1.       Sister Midnight – 4:19
2.       Nightclubbing – 4:14
3.       Funtime – 2:54
4.       Baby – 3:24
5.       China Girl – 5:08
6.       Dum Dum Boys – 7:12
7.       Tiny Girls – 2:59
8.       Mass Production – 8:24

Listen to ‘China Girl’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9BBAEUOOFKQ

Also released on the 18th March:
1997: Ben Folds Five – Whatever and Ever Amen
Also released on the 18th March:
2008: Devotchka – A Mad & Faithful Telling

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