Category: The Stooges

The Stooges – Fun House

ARTIST: The Stooges 220px-StoogesFunHouse
TITLE: Fun House
YEAR RELEASED: 1970
CHART ACTION: None
SINGLES: Down on the Street
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Loose, TV Eye, 1970
LINEUP: Iggy Pop, Scott Asheton, Ron Asheton, Dave Alexander, Steve Mackay
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Unholy hell unleashed on vinyl. Play this as loud as you can stand it. It’s not for the faint of heart, but rock ‘n’ roll ain’t that, sister.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: How do you describe the apocalypse of rock ‘n’ roll? The first side of this album, probably. Seriously.

The Stooges’ debut showed some attitude and sneer, but was a little short of actual content. While this album is just seven songs, with the last one being a chaotic free-jazz collapse of everything around it into a black hole of noise, the content is there. The sneer is there. The attitude? Oh, there’s attitude!

Alexander’s bass moves through each song like a panther, working with Scott Asheton to set a rhythmic bedrock while establishing the structutre. That allows Ron Asheton to smear his guitar everywhere with a Jackson Pollak approach to his wah-wah riffs and solos.

Then there’s Iggy. There’s always Iggy. Iggy rules this album. Without the other Stooges, it wouldn’t work, but without Iggy there’s nothing. This was everything the counter-culture wasn’t, and it had to scare the bejeezus out of hippies everywhere. This was scuzzy dirty ugly music for a scuzzy dirty ugly time, no matter what hippy-dippy crap was in a utopian mind. His screams throughout this record (especially before “TV Eye”) are all you really need to hear to understand.

Rock ‘n’ roll wouldn’t be the same without this record.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: After this album was released, the Stooges played at a festival in Cincinnati where Iggy did his famous peanut butter smear and walk on the crowd. Yes, walk ON the crowd – their hands holding him up.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Lord yes – the entire session is out there. I mean, every take. But, really, it’s a bit much. They did choose the best takes for the album

GRADE: A: I’m not totally on board with the last cut – I respect it though since I get what the free jazzians were trying to do. The other six though? Fuckin’ A.

The Stooges – The Stooges

ARTIST: The Stooges 220px-StoogesStooges
TITLE: The Stooges
YEAR RELEASED: 1969
CHART ACTION: #106
SINGLES: I Wanna Be Your Dog
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: 1969, No Fun, Real Cool Time
LINEUP: Iggy Pop, Dave Alexander, Ron Asheton, Scott Asheton
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Most every punk-rocker worth his salt claims the Stooges as an influence – and this, their debut has that influence in about half the cuts. The other cuts? Um….

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Starting off with “1969” and “I Wanna Be Your Dog”, and starting side two with “No Fun” and “Real Cool Time” was genius, brilliant, and all you need to hear. Iggy Pop’s swagger and attitude and Ron Asheton’s garage wah-wah guitar launched a thousand bands.

The other songs? A 10 minute dirge that probably sounded better on stage or under the influence of a lot of stuff, and a few songs that seem tossed off. Well, they were tossed off. The Stooges weren’t exactly prolific.

Still, the four songs everyone knows is why everyone should have this.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: The Stooges originally delivered a five song album to Elektra. Five songs. The company said they needed three more, so basically they wrote and recorded them in 24 hours. One of them, though, was “Real Cool Time”.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Alternate and different mixes, yes. But remember, they recorded only eight songs and one was a 10 minute thing.

GRADE: B+-: No matter who awesomely awesome those four songs are, it’s the two really slow ones that drag this sucker down.