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Kill City, by Iggy Pop and James Williamson

Was he really kickin' his habit? Although KC was cranked out during interludes from the nut house he was thrown into for heroin fixation, Pop's ferocious as ever (possibly fortified by the coke David Bowie is rumored to have snuck in for his pal) on this long-anticipated remaster/mix. But depressed? Hell, yeah. "Lucky Monkeys" is a you-can't-win-for-losin' rant. "Beyond the Law" mirrors the tantrum-ish frustration Pop admired in Jim Morrison. And love is no refuge: wailing saxes and a strutting progression support the love/hate/addiction howls of "Johanna."

We're not talking about the jaw-dropping grit of Stooges classics "Gimme Danger" and "I Wanna Be Your Dog" or the in-your-face shimmer of "The Passenger" or "Lust for Life." But, as wannabe catwalkers are encouraged to do through the NTM franchise, Iggy attained "brand" status decades ago. Rockers jonesing for freshly minted Iggy probably won't hear the similarity between the title track's intro and Elton John's "Saturday Night," or care that "Consolation Prizes" could be a one-off with the Stones. Only historians are likely to be interested in the way "Sell Your Love" holds strands from Pop's musical family tree in both directions (Bowie, Mott the Hoople, Sonic Youth). Fans blasting KC from car stereos are just making it harder for errant texters to focus on traffic signals.

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  • Album: Kill City (Restored, remixed, remastered, 2010)
  • Artist: Iggy Pop and James Williamson
  • Label: Alive Records
  • Songs: (1) Kill City (2) Sell Your Love (3) Beyond the Law (4) I Got Nothin' (5) Johanna (6) Night Theme (7) Night Theme (Reprise) (8) Consolation Prizes (9) No Sense of Crime (10) Lucky Monkeys (11) Master Charge
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Was he really kickin' his habit? Although KC was cranked out during interludes from the nut house he was thrown into for heroin fixation, Pop's ferocious as ever (possibly fortified by the coke David Bowie is rumored to have snuck in for his pal) on this long-anticipated remaster/mix. But depressed? Hell, yeah. "Lucky Monkeys" is a you-can't-win-for-losin' rant. "Beyond the Law" mirrors the tantrum-ish frustration Pop admired in Jim Morrison. And love is no refuge: wailing saxes and a strutting progression support the love/hate/addiction howls of "Johanna."

We're not talking about the jaw-dropping grit of Stooges classics "Gimme Danger" and "I Wanna Be Your Dog" or the in-your-face shimmer of "The Passenger" or "Lust for Life." But, as wannabe catwalkers are encouraged to do through the NTM franchise, Iggy attained "brand" status decades ago. Rockers jonesing for freshly minted Iggy probably won't hear the similarity between the title track's intro and Elton John's "Saturday Night," or care that "Consolation Prizes" could be a one-off with the Stones. Only historians are likely to be interested in the way "Sell Your Love" holds strands from Pop's musical family tree in both directions (Bowie, Mott the Hoople, Sonic Youth). Fans blasting KC from car stereos are just making it harder for errant texters to focus on traffic signals.

Sponsored
Sponsored
  • Album: Kill City (Restored, remixed, remastered, 2010)
  • Artist: Iggy Pop and James Williamson
  • Label: Alive Records
  • Songs: (1) Kill City (2) Sell Your Love (3) Beyond the Law (4) I Got Nothin' (5) Johanna (6) Night Theme (7) Night Theme (Reprise) (8) Consolation Prizes (9) No Sense of Crime (10) Lucky Monkeys (11) Master Charge
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A great, great album without a single bad song on it. (How many records can you say that about?) I've never understood the people who slagged off this record. By the way, the cocaine "rumors" are documented in Paul Trynka's fine Open Up and Bleed bio of Iggy.

Oct. 24, 2010

Worth noting is that previous versions of this terrific album were nearly unlistenable, due to faulty vinyl and/or bootlegging from what was already a distorted mix. This is the first time we've been able to hear the record with clear, undistorted fidelity - a killer album, and it's about time that people found out about it!

Oct. 24, 2010

Jay - you added what 200 words didn't quite leave room for, on this end. Re: what Iggy was or wasn't imbibing, since I wasn't there, I tend to err on the side of caution when reporting. Thanks for the comments.

Oct. 25, 2010

One question: Do you mean Elton John's "Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting?" Otherwise I'm stuck hearing Iggy sing the Bay City Rollers, or Blue Nile...

Oct. 25, 2010

Don't know how serious you are, Andrew, but, yes, "Sat. Night's Alright..." on another note, I imagine Iggy wd be gratified at how many people have something to say about a review that expressed anything other than an all-out rave... although this one was more about describing than about sharing personal experience. Riffs are riffs. A former dj's ears are a blessing &, I guess to some in this case, a curse?

Oct. 27, 2010

Interesting! Where and when (and how late at night) did you DJ?

Oct. 27, 2010

Questions, questions! Helped usher in the New Wave via between-bands spinning at a dive called The Keg near D.C. Then at WGTB FM (Washington, D.C.) - first show was midnight - 3 a.m.; after that I did one at the same sta. from 3-6 p.m.; also did some club djing in NYC in the 80s... the night bird thing ain't gonna sting; if you can't ditch it - wear it!

Oct. 27, 2010
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