Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Way-back Wednesday

OK, as I described yesterday, every Wednesday from now on I'll highlight an older, overlooked record.

It'll be a fun way to revisit some discs that maybe didn't get the exposure they deserved when originally released.

We're going to start today with Dinosaur Jr.'s 1987 underground breakthrough "You're Living All Over Me." Now I'm not foolish enough to say that this masterpiece is overlooked in the indie-rock world (it's been reissued and remastered for heaven's sake), but to the regular joe, it may have never been heard.

And, luckily, we here in New Haven have a chance to see the band's original lineup play Toad's Place tonight. I saw the band at the beginning of this reunion tour last July at Avalon in Boston and have to say it was pretty amazing, no matter how bad opening band Feathers sounded.

On "You're Living All Over Me," the band's second record, the trio began to focus on the raw, noise punk that would make it a legend. Frontman J Mascis basically brought the guitar solo into indie rock, a genre that at its inception tried to shy away from solos fearing classic rock comparisons. But Mascis doesn't do normal solos; the guy takes extended forays into almost free-form, feedback-drenched rawness.

The record isn't mixed in a "proper" way, so it sounds absolutely messed up with noise; it could scare small children it is so loud. And even future Sebadoh and Folk Implosion main man Lou Barlow's contributions to the album are worthwhile. "Poledo's" lo-fi experimentalism actually is a precursor to early Sebadoh.

Anyway, the original lineup of Djr were together for only two records and an EP before Barlow got fired after 1998's "Bug." So to be able to see the reformed trio right here, without traveling at all, well, that's a good thing.

And since the group only performs tunes off those three releases, you may want to pick up a copy of "You're Living ..." sometime this afternoon. That's if you, GASP!, don't have one already.

See you there.

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