A couple of current American LPs over the weekend starting with ‘Majesty Shredding’ by Superchunk.
Now, much as I love her, there is one area that I wouldn’t trust Mrs MPT as far as I can throw her. Identifying music for me. Firstly there is the taste thing and then there is the fact that she does not know everything I own by any stretch of the imagination so the chances of duplicating something are probably reasonably high.
I think she understands this in that all the CDs she’s bought over the years have been from an list prepared in advance by myself. (We’ll not talk about the time she bought the regular version of ‘Death To The Pixies’ rather than the one with the live CD.)
So it was something of a shock on my recent birthday to open a CD package and find an album cover staring back at me that I didn’t recognise. And of course, without my glasses on, the font was so small that I had no idea what it actually was.
But it turned out to be the afore mentioned Superchunk record. Now of course I’m aware of Superchunk, (drummer Jon Wurster has recently toured with Bob Mould) but I’d never knowingly heard any of their music. I had this notion that they were sort of American college rock.
Which is pretty much what the record turns out to be. And it’s, well, ok. There’s a couple of memorable tunes – ‘Crossed Wires’ is one and ‘Fractures In Plaster’ another with the latter the most interesting arrangement on the record. And there’s some neat riffs such as the intro to ‘Learned to Surf’.
But much of the rest, I can take or leave. You could probably have convinced me that ‘Slow Drip’ is a half decent Manic Street Preachers song and I guess that the Manics’ recent output isn’t a bad comparison quality wise. Some good stuff, little that’s dreadful but a lot in between. I wouldn’t say anything on ‘Majesty Shredding’ is dreadful but there’s a lot of average stuff on here.
So probably just about a score draw in terms of Mrs MPT’s brave decision. (Aren’t I an ungrateful bastard?) It’s not a record I’m going to hide but I suspect that it will be the only Superchunk record I ever own. (6/10)
Buy the CD here. From the record:
PS Bizarrely searching for a video from the LP, I discovered one of Superchunk doing ‘In Between Days’ – after I’d titled this post. The number of such coincidences I’ve noticed since reading Ken McLeod’s ‘The Restoration Game’ is getting worrying!