Friday, May 11, 2007

MUSIC: I missed the boat on the Replacements

It's like they've been hovering over me for years, and I just never bothered to look up. Had I discovered this band in high school, they would have been the equivalent to Nirvana for me, Paul Westerberg my Kurt Cobain. As I see it now, they were the heirs to the throne occupied by the Clash in the late 70's and through the early 1980's.

The first Replacements album that I heard was Tim, and it blew me away almost immediately. The Goo Goo Dolls later re-made this album, and called it Superstar Car Wash (Back when they were an alright band, in my opinion, but we won't get into that right now.).

Some spectacular tracks from Tim include the anthemic Bastards of Young, the swinging Waitress In The Sky and the adjectivelly challenged Left of the Dial. The album ends with the song Here Comes A Regular, which absolutely reeks of being a "punker's first ballad," although it's really quite charming because of that.

Although the follow up album Pleased to Meet Me was a bit more polished ("JUDAS!"), Westerberg cannot be blamed for showing off his pop-chops on this album. Catchy as all freaking hell, I tells ya. I swear, as soon as anyone hears Can't Hardly Wait, it will be etched in their minds for all time. The rest of the album is certainly not filler either.

The big gap in my Replacements experience is the seminal Let It Be, which I really need to find this summer.

All Shook Down is a pretty good album in it's own right, but is fairly boring compared to their previous achievements (As with Don't Tell A Soul, before that). If you find it for less than $10, get it, but certainly do not pay full price for it.

Another interesting thing to note is that The Replacements have probably been covered almost as often as the Beatles, so here are some standouts that I've heard:

Counting Crows - Unsatisfied (will link later on)
The Weakerthans - Swingin' Party
Jesse Malin - Bastards of Young

This has been another episode of "I Arrived Late To The Party." We hope that you have enjoyed my shame.

1 comment:

Zotch said...

I would cite "Unsatisfied" as the best Replacements song.