Well, one who knows me might say these five stars are more an emotional thing for Mudhoney and this particular compilation (not an album, it's something like Nirvana's Incesticide), than a somehow rational review of it. But listening to Mudhoney should never be about rationally analysing their "musical quality", in terms of how technically good they are with their instruments and stuff like that. It's about raw punk rock energy and bits of dementia and good humor somewhere in the middle and yes, they rule in that area!!
If I was reviewing the "normal" Superfuzz Bigmuff and Early Singles I would defenitely give it six stars, but as I'm reviewing this Deluxe Edition, I have to take into acount that the sound quality of the last 6 songs, recorded live @ KCSB (Radio Broadcast on November 16, 1988) is really not that good. Still, it's a fine "document." On the other hand, the Berlin concert (October 10, 1988) sounds good and really kicks ass! And Mark Arm's dialogues with the crowd are very funny too.
I'm 34 now, so I was a fortunate teenager during the 90's Seattle scene and I was so into it... oh, the good old days... Superfuzz Bigmuff was my first encounter with (someone called it) grunge rock, even before Nirvana's Nevermind came out. It was the year 1990, I was 13. A friend of my older brother came into our house with a vinyl copy and I was awestruck. The good thing is that even today I can still feel that raw teenage energy inside when I listen to this. So if you're a younger kid living through this musically unfortunate generation, searching for the roots of some of that good 90's Seattle sound, this is something that you must listen to. Seriously. If you're an old idiot who's left the teenager inside you die you can skip it. Go to work, be with your wife and kids, read your jounal and listen to Mozart or Coltrane. If you're an older and even bigger idiot, like me; if you went through the 90's rocking your head out to the sounds of Nirvana, Pixies, Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr. etc., but never got your ears into this one; and if you want to be free; if you want to be free to do what you want to do; and if you want to get loaded; well, you're still on time. "JESUS TAKE ME TO A HIGHER PLACE!!!" \m/
This is the classic Mudhoney Album. Any of you who remember the music coming from the 'Seatle scene' of the late eighties/early nineties will definitely recognise a least one of the tracks here. Full of crowd surfing passsion!
Mudhoney where amongst a handful of little known bands that helped define the birth of grunge for acts like Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden to become major stars in their own right which could not be said for Mudhoney despite releasing an EP in Superfuzz Bigamuff that helped set the template of Grunge while Nivana's nevermind was the one that broke grunge.
Anybody who missed them first time around then should do themselves justice in buying the remastered release as this shows them at their best where they fearlessley set about in mixing punk, garage, and heavy, heavy metal to create a musical setting for their dark humour, youthful disenchantment and feisty anti-heroism which shows on their hit single and its b-side "sweet young thing ain't so sweet anymore" the former forges ahead on the back of a notable riff and plenty of effects pedals from guitarists steve turner and mark arm, alternating with almost melodic passages in which arms vocals recall the new york dolls while the latter is weighty, distorted, doomy and grimy which goes along a similar vein in mudride.
yet the bonuses about his remaster is the demos and live tracks which deviate little from the familar versions but the KCSB radio sessions prove to be chaotic which is only a slight mark against a popular but overlooked mudhoneys classic album.
Well you probably wondering about the title the 2nd best grunge album ever will let me explain. This album is just as good let alone better than Nirvana's Bleach and insecticide records and plays a massive part to the grunge Explosion of 91' due to Nirvana's Nevermind mainstream success. But Mudhoney are the 2nd best grunge band and loss out first place to Nirvana why? Ii was Nirvana that made the youth turn to Grunge and if it was not for them bands such as Green River,Mudhoney,Babes in Toy land,L7 would have been forgotten. There are some Classics on This album and instead of turning to the classics of Nirvana with this album there is so much to explore and give you new musical ideas and just feels like something new.