The Stooges - The Stooges

2010-08-21 12:37
The Stooges

Right, so it's hardly a high point in rock 'n roll poetry. But The Stooges never wanted to be Bob Dylan. Like Elvis these Detroit working class losers were white trash rock 'n roll hound dogs who just wanted to get laid.

"I Wanna Be Your Dog" is a bestial two chord celebration of pussy whipped, messed up love that makes the Velvet Underground's Pop Art sagas of sexual deviancy sound like peep shows. The unbridled fear and self-loathing fuelling no-fidelity burps such as "Real Cool Time" and "No Fun" elevates the crass arrogance of snotty-nosed lyrical yelps like "Maybe go out, maybe stay at home, maybe call momma on the telephone" into an existential epigram and simultaneously nails the tongue-tied fury of the post-adolescent id to the wall.

1970's Fun House may have been more off the musical map in terms of its thrashing industrial regressive sprawl and 1973's Raw Power more of an amphetamine-glam-punk pathfinder. But it's the nihilistic frenzy fuelling these metallic garage rock gang bangs about young and restless working class losers ("Not Right") with no future, who cruise the inner city streets chasing skirts ("Little Doll") that cemented The Stooges reputation as the DIY two chord guide for generations of punk bands to come from The Sex Pistols and The Damned to Green Day and beyond.

Make no msitake, their lyrics are completely crass. But the fear and self-loathing fuelling no-fidelity gang banger "Real Cool Time" is so frenzied it crucifies the tongue-tied rage of most young men's post-adolescent id to the cross. And the music is a serious trip. Mainlining the amps-on-11 excess of garage bands like Blue Cheer and the suicidal Dionysian self-loathing of The Doors' Jim Morrison, Iggy and his Stooges severed rock from its rhythm and blues bondage with their regressive art brut blueprint that was utterly out of synch with the flower powered hippie haze of the late 60s.

Nowhere more so than on the sex, drugs and what it means to really rock 'n roll climax of the 10 minute viola-scraped finale "We Will Fall". "Tonight I'll hold myself tight/ I won't fight, I won't fight...And in the mornin' I'll be ready/ To see you, to see you/ Don't forget to come...Goodbye, goodbye, goodbye" intones Iggy over a sustained modal guitar drone and chorus chant that sounds eerily like a Hari Krishna mantra! It's both a dangerously indulgent ode to engaging in carnal pleasures while being high on heroin, but also an unabashedly idiotic affirmation of punk nihilism.

"Last year I was 21 - I didn't have a lot of fun. Now I'm gonna be 22, I say 'Oh my and a boo-boo'" howls Iggy Pop on opening proto punk ejaculation "1969".

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