The Sunday Shuffle – #18

Freak Scene – Dinosaur Jr (1988, SST Records)

More running this morning.  I decided that whatever song was playing the moment I reached three miles would be the selected song – and I was rather pleased when this absolute stone cold classic fired up around just before. 

For a song that is just over three and a half minutes long it is chock full of wonderful moments.  For instance, that guitar bit at the start, that is now, probably one of the most instantly recognisable intros in alternative rock.  Back when I was lad, just hearing two seconds of that fire up would be enough to send me running to the dancefloor to entertain people with my Kermit in a Blender Impression.  

Then you have the riff.  Or rather, the first riff.  A riff so big that you can park a bus in it.  It jumps in from literally nowhere at thirty seconds and then explodes again about eight seconds later into this ridiculously heavy section that jangles away like a heavy rock version of the Troggs.   Ah man its so wonderful. 

Not quite as wonderful as the break that occurs around one minute in, when the heaviness is almost forgotten, and a pop song emerges as guitars strum away like something on Postcard Records and the vocals go all summery until J Mascis forgets all that and brings in that riff.

Or riff number two if you like, a whirling, snarly beast of riff that literally snaps the song in half like an angry elephant stomping through a wood.  Its one of rocks music finest 40 seconds and that almost gently brings us to the line that launched a thousand club nights called ‘Freakscene’ across the land – you know the one….

Just don’t let me fuck up will you, cos when I need a friend It’s still you

Just Immense.

Randomly Shuffled Songs #2

Headache – METZ (2012, Sub Pop Records, Taken from ‘METZ’)

The great thing about Random Shuffles is that on occasion your phone, iPod and other device that plays music will throw up something that you had long since forgotten about. Enter METZ, and in particular their debut record, which, is also called ‘METZ’.

It was a record I played an awful lot when it first came out, but haven’t really listened to since 2017. At the time I really liked its ferociousness and the sheer pace of the whole thing. You get ten songs in less than 30 minutes and I totally accept that they might not be to everyone’s tastes, but if you ask me there is something beautifully chaotic about their music.

Of course METZ is also a city in France, so this can also be the second instalment in the “Bands Who Have A City In Their Name” series, that I am not really doing yet.

METZ do not hail from the city that they are named after, but rather are from Ottawa in Canada. Their music has been described as sludge punk. I’m not sure what that is or whether there is or ever has been a thriving sludge punk scene. If you want a lazy comparison METZ sound like those early Dinosaur Jr records which were I imagine highly influential in the sludge punk world, particularly as they were writing songs about sludge back then.

Sludgefeast – Dinosaur Jr (1987, SST Records, Taken from You’re Living All Over Me’)