I think about a world to come where the books were found by the golden ones, written in pain, written in awe by a puzzled man who questioned, "What are we here for?" All the strangers came today and it looks as though they're here to stay.

-David Bowie "Oh! You Pretty Things"

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Iggy and the Stooges Raw Power (1973: Columbia)

1. "Search and Destroy" - 3:29
2. "Gimme Danger" - 3:33
3. "Your Pretty Face Is Going to Hell" - 4:54
4. "Penetration" - 3:41
5. "Raw Power" - 4:16
6. "I Need Somebody" - 4:53
7. "Shake Appeal" - 3:04
8. "Death Trip" - 6:07

Last year, one of my big trips was that I was going to do an intensive listening for one artist or band every single month of the year. Many of those were not the most productive. Erasure, for example, did not have as much zest and wonder to their music as one might think by listening to "Always" while playing Robot Unicorn Attack. But with the exception of Tears for Fears, there was no month more wonderful than September's Iggy Pop/Iggy Pop and the Stooges month.

Raw Power is one of the best rock albums that I have ever heard. The energy, or "raw power," of this album is unmatched. Much like Led Zeppelin with Houses of the Holy, Raw Power does more than you thought any album could in eight songs. "Search and Destroy" became popular enough to warrant a Red Hot Chili Peppers cover, but also an inclusion in one of my favorite scenes in The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. With "Gimme Danger," Iggy invents a new type of romance, something like Springsteen's "Thunder Road" for nightwalkers.

Raw Power is hard and honest. It is one of the reasons rock and roll survived the death of Hendrix and the dissolution of the Beatles. It is solid gold in a way that most disco records could never imagine.

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