Mudhoney Live in ’88

Back in June when I was boarding my flight from London to Seattle I noticed that someone in a sort of pork pie hat was lugging drum equipment around as his carry on bag. Since the dude looked haggard and slightly whimsically gentlemanly I assumed the band wasn’t anyone I would be interested in. Fast forward to the stopover, which I boarded near the front of the line. As the rest of the passengers boarded a middle-aged dude who looked sort of like Iggy Pop stopped and looked at me as he passed by my seat. In a dry, smart-ass, tone he cracked out: ‘hey you were on the flight from London. Are you stalking us?’ Following a second of momentary perplexity I suddenly realize that this Iggy-Pop-looking dude is Mark Arm from Mudhoney. I say something about how I was stalking them, but unsuccessfully, since I missed all their shows, and we make some small talk about their recent tour before he has to move along. The encounter suits me as a pretty fucking appropriate way to return to Seattle.  Later after that when I read the oral history of Seattle and a I reacquainted myself with the tedious entities known as Pearl Jam, Soundgarden etc. it becomes apparent that Mudhoney are the only grunge bands worth remembering from Seattle. I decide to give their early stuff a re-listen. Its been years, but in someways it holds up even better in comparison to the derivative crap that followed: they have some ripping tunes, what’s more they aren’t massively self-important, appropriately self-deprecating even, and have a sense of humour. (Like when they started calling ‘Touch Me I’m Sick’ ‘Fuck Me I’m Rich’ during the grunge explosion.) The other day I stumbled upon this fucking excellent footage, the bit when the PA goes out and the crowd sings along also evokes the Minor Threat footage from Another State of Mind,  helping to show that this strand of grunge has its roots in the punk underground:

About HR

Deep in the adjunct crackhole.
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