Husker Du were one of my very favorite bands in the 80's.
Bob Mould's song 'Too Far Down' from the 'Candy Apple Grey' album
(1986) was up there with the best that the decade had to offer.
Mr Mould is still a vital force. I think, like a good wine,
his voice has become stronger, more distinctive and refined
with the passing years. 'Life and Times' is a testament to the
endurance and survival of his somewhat dark and doleful muse.
The ten songs in this new collection are all as good anything
he has previously written. The no-frills, economic but edgy
execution of the material packs a big emotional punch.
'City Lights' is a wonderful example of how a relatively
simple melody can be transformed and booted up to a higher
level by the right kind of musical and rhythmic dynamism.
'MM 17' is a four-square rocker. Densely-layered and buzzing
with energetic but beautifully integrated electric guitar work.
(No big gratuitous solos for Mr Mould!)
At just over two minutes long 'Argos' bristles with the kind
of raucous post-punk energy which made Husker Du so great.
'Bad Blood Better' is a blisteringly raw cri de coeur.
The private made public in lyrics of almost unbearable honesty.
'I'm Sorry, Baby, But You Can't Stand In My Light Any More'
is another extraordinarily vivid autobiographical composition.
A song burning with loss, anger and regret for an unhappy ending.
Final track 'Lifetime' is not an easy listen either but
brings the album to an achingly plaintive conclusion.