Just discovered this incredible new band today, Spider Heart from San Francisco. They could best be described as a cross between early Wire, the Stooges, Jane’s Addiction, Black Sabbath, and the Nymphs. But even that description falls far short. There are few bands that can be described as true originals and Spider Heart is one of them. Lead singer May Black has been described as a cross between Iggy Pop and Janis Joplin and damn if that’s not an accurate assessment. Except I would also throw Inger Lorre, Courtney Love, and Darby Crash into that mix. This is authentically dangerous and thrilling music and if you like what you hear, do yourself a favor and check out their awesome EP “Dirt” available on iTunes and Google Play. And of course, you can also enjoy them on Dave’s Strange Radio!
This was always my favorite track of the Stooges’ legendary out-of-control 1970 masterpiece “Fun House.” When I first heard it, it reminded me a lot of early 1970s Alice Cooper, only much heavier and darker.
I swear that this next story is true, but I heard this album for the first time on the night of my first actual “date.” I didn’t have my first date until I was 17, because I had braces on my teeth until that age and felt very self-conscious about them. When I got them off, my self-esteem rose enough to the point where I felt like I could ask someone out. Let’s forget the fact that I rocked a Ron Burgandy “Anchorman”-do back in the day (sans pornstar ‘stache), but for argument’s sake … without the braces, I started to feel like Warren Beatty. Anyway … the girl I asked out said “yes” and I decided we’d go see a movie. Considering my favorite movie at the time was “Blue Velvet,” I felt that anything resembling what I was actually into would send the wrong message. I mean, God forbid, I should actually “be myself.” So … I overcompensated by picking a Bette Midler-Shelley Long “buddy” film called “Outrageous Fortune.” OK … I swear I’m not a homosexual, but back in the day, I could do a really good impersonation of one without even trying. Considering the fact that during that period I was impressed when goth girls said I looked like Morrissey, I’m sure you can predict that this potential “romance” was doomed … You can read more about that here:
Being nervous about my first date, I left the house incredibly early and killed time before I was supposed to show up at a local record store. I had heard about The Stooges for years, but all of their stuff had been out of print in the U.S. for a long period of time. So … when I saw a lone, dusty cassette of “Fun House” on the shelves, I immediately threw down by $7 and went back to the car. I drove around for almost an hour locked into the sick, intense jams of “Fun House.” Considering the fact that I was wearing my finest Cosby sweater and khakis, I felt that I was in the right mode to put on the charm.
Fortunately, I was wise enough NOT to play my new musical find after I picked my date up. And … despite my best efforts … the date went pretty well. My date ignored the film and made out with me. But … she never returned my calls after that evening … leading to some confusion as I was not yet familiar with how these “date” things sometimes worked … but, as they say, that was that.
But the evening wasn’t a total loss. I still crank “Fun House” at inopportune times almost 25 years later and still get sucked into the pure insanity of Iggy at his most demented.
Here’s Neneh’s wonderfully sleazy, avant-garde, and punk-jazz cover of Iggy and the Stooges’ nihilistic S&M masterpiece. This sounds like an outtake from Sly and the Family Stone’s “There’s a Riot Goin’ On” … only with Iggy’s passion, anger, and brain full of God-knows-what. Neneh has evolved into a cross between Nina Simone and Diamanda Galas. This is some seriously deep and scary s–t. If that’s not a cool f–kin’ concept, I don’t know what is!
The splendid and infamous mash-up of “Push It” by Salt n’ Pepa with “No Fun” by The Stooges, put together by 2 Many DJs. This was one of Nick Hornby’s favorites in his collection of essays about desert island songs, “Songbook.” If you like what you hear, be sure to check out the 2 Many DJs album “As Heard on Radio Vol. 2″ , which is nothing but multiple mashups of everything from the Velvet Underground to Dolly Parton to Peaches to Emerson Lake & Palmer. Trust me, it’s WAAAAY better than it sounds.
This ballad from hell is my favorite track off Iggy’s infamously awesome “Raw Power” album. Many prefer the sturm and drang of “Search and Destroy” and the title track, but I always found this “love” song way more sinister and frightening. “There’s nothing left alive but a pair of glassy eyes … raise my fears one more time.”