Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Review #90: Hüsker Dü - Everything Falls Apart (1983)


Year: 1983
Genre: Punk Rock
Reflex Records
19 Minutes (Medium-Length)
My Rating:

By this point in my reviews you've probably already heard a lot of about Hüsker Dü. Well, they were a rock band. This is their second LP they released, and the first studio LP they did. Like most of their early sound (actually I read that they were New-Wavers when they first started), it's extremely fast, hard -- standard for a typical hardcore punk record. It was their last album they released before signing to SST Records (excellent choice!) later on in the same year.

1. From the Gut
Alternates between rolling drums and more linear beats. The lyrics seem to either be about a heartbreak or getting punched in the gut. Either way, about pain, it seems.

2. Blah Blah Blah
This song's pretty fast. It's about a loudmouth douchebag who talks crap to the song's protagonist, as the protagonist asks if the enemy is "talking in tongues, or is his brain out of gear?". There's a pretty awesome solo in here. The song ends with the sounds of a group of people talking about a bunch of random stuff.

3. Punch Drunk
This one's even faster! It's only 30 seconds long -- the lyrics are about punk violence as kids in the bar kick and punch eachother -- "think it's a fucking gym??", asks Bob Mould... when asked where his friend is, he replies, "guess he'd rather be punch drunk".

4. Bricklayer
Extremely fast n' angry! It's about a dude who throws heavy bricks from a window of a building at peoples' heads.

5. Afraid of Being Wrong
This one's about bullies who refrain from saying much, hide with their insecurities in their crowd, "don't speak unless spoken to" and become passive because they're "afraid of being wrong".

6. Sunshine Superman

This one's a Donovan cover. An early hint towards Hüsker Dü's eventual expansion in musical direction. A classic-sounding guitar solo can be heard in the song. Actually, there's a ton of lead in this song. I can tell by these lyrics that Donovan was probably on something when he wrote 'em. Heheh.

7. Signals From Above
Starts with some healthy noize, until the thrash kicks in, as angry vocals are sung, criticizing the world's hippies who "think the whole world is incense, peace, and love" -- proclaiming they ignore the "signals from above", mocking their ideas of 'free love' by calling "dirt-cheap love" a "thing of the past". End of Side 1.

8. Everything Falls Apart
This one's kinda happy-sounding. I think there's a usage of a keyboard in this song, too. Sounds really pretty. The song's premise is simple -- everything falls apart. It's only natural. Another nice solo, too.

9. Wheels
This song mocks people who use their cars to show off, loving their cars more than people; forgetting that a car is a dangerous tool which could eventually be your grave!

10. Target
This song criticizes stupid scenesters who "think it's all passe, even though they listen to the same records every day", and hate others who "caught on late, even if they're having fun" -- however, the Target never makes his/her own music or does anything productive... simply a leech, an internally ugly troll existing to feed off its own hatred and feelings of superiority. "YOU'RE A HYPOCRITE! YOU'RE THE TARGET!"

11. Obnoxious
Fast and short. It's a big 'fuck you' to all of the people in society who looked down upon them for being punks and playing fast music, or "not talking right", saying "they won't last".

12. Gravity
Longest song on the album (two-and-a-half minutes). It's one of the slowest, too. Like a few others on this album, it resembles their more melodic sound that would become regular for them in the next album. The song is about the pressures of the world crushing in on us all just like gravity, but it's not actually gravity.

Ten years later, the band re-released the album on CD with bonus tracks from the "In a Free Land" single, some outtakes, and an 8-minute song called "Statues"! After this album, the band got signed to SST and released "Metal Circus", which I have already reviewed, so you can find the review to that album and their classic double LP that came after that, "Zen Arcade" on this site if you look around, so yeah, this album makes a good example of Hüsker Dü's earlier, more erratic hardcore punk, in better quality than "Land Speed Record"...

Top 3 Favorites:
1. Everything Falls Apart
2. Bricklayer
3. From the Gut

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