Dig it: In my previous post’s comments section, a debate rages about J Mascis and Evan Dando’s new Lemonheads’ single, “No Backbone.”
What can I say? It’s raining out.
While I enjoy Mr. Mascis’s work up through Green Mind, after which he lost his way and mind, I feel his soloing through Mr. Dando’s new tune is akin to any notable guitarist phoning in a riff they could lay down in one take without writing anything worth remembering. Some people would argue that Mascis’s distinct style would be enough. Yet that makes me metaphor: Jack Nicholson is a great actor when he plays a certain type of guy, but Daniel Day Lewis can do anything and make you forget he’s there. I want more Day from mascis, less Nicholson.
Although I usually don’t mind knowing Mascis is there, but he left me limp this time – if he doesn’t do anything new, why listen to this track when I can simply go back and enjoy “The Wagon” or “The Lung”? This riff is from Mascis 2.0, the android who made records after Green Mind. Dando’s a more interesting guitarist than Mascis 2.0.
It’s like hearing the Traveling Wilburys when I was a teenager. I knew right away it was old fart garbage. Older fans, real Beatles, Orbison, and Dylan fans (Petty made one album, his greatest hits, and ceases to exist for me otherwise) from those artists’ true heydays, must have been nauseous when they first heard the Wilburys. But half probably weren’t. I’m worried that Dando and Mascis may be ruined for 20 years for today’s younger fans. The Wilburys did it for me.
This is real Lemonheads:
And this is realer Lemonheads than Lemonheads, and we get this track thanks to Rich Girls Are Weeping, who reminded us, by posting it a few days ago, that we had allowed it to languish in our posession for months:
The opening is pure Mascis, but the song leaves it behind for more — I love the Built to Spill-like breakdown 2/3 through, love the Cheap Trick choral flourishes, love the Squirrel Bait propulsion and joy. I hope they didn’t pack their entire career into one song – other stuff I’ve heard, thus far, left me nonplussed.
And my final posted track appears in reaction to all us stupid grownups arguing about nothing important:
There are few moments of better lugubrious hilarity than when Lekman has his Stoltz-like narrator sing “Blind girl I miss you …” toward the end. I bet Billy Bob never mourned Laura Dern like Rocky Dennis. Prick …