Thursday, March 27, 2014

No Fun: the vacant genius of the Stooges

Iggy Pop was a drummer in blues bands before he and his fellows formed the Stooges in the 60s, and as this song demonstrates , the experience wasn't wasted. Iggy and his mates understood, that is to say felt the vaguely described but conspicuous force that blues had , simple, sonic, repetitive  and impolite to any standard measure of tempo. 

This was the kind of music that was the blend of instinct and wits, a boxer's set of reflexes to things that get in your way. Guitar, drums and are distorted grind and the tempo of nails hammered. The Ashtons smashed mightily. 

Iggy, of course, was the man alone, a three semester course of unreconstructed Id that inhabiting  the center of every ganglia of nerves the brain tried to lay claim to;  the super ego to twitch and become more reptilian by the second. He was that kid in drain pipe jeans who carried a sharp stick with a brown, mung encrusted nail through it, waiting on the corner for someone as yet unknown to walk by and get poked with it. There was no fun, so you made your own, just to see what happens. 

These were Mailer's White Negros for a fact, except they shivved me man who was tailing them and talking too much in the other muse mute streets of two story burn pads and deserted store fronts that had their front windows sealed with concrete and layers of old concert posters and spray paint exclaiming gang signs and Jesus. Anyone daring to talk past this kid deserved to be wacked with the rusty nail. It was cruel and pointless until something genuine happened to change everything; the bit that everyone knows in the world of the Stooges is that transcendence is not on the agenda, ever.