Music On Vinyl
IGGY POP - New Values LP (colour vinyl)
180 gram audiophile vinyl.
After the RCA years and Iggy Pop's two classic albums with David Bowie, Pop signed to Arista and had to prove he could do things on his own. 1979's 'New Values' proved the point nicely. After the artistic ambitions of the two Bowie collaborations, this album is, by contrast, appealingly unassuming and unpretentious. The formula is refreshingly simple: Pop finds one good riff per song and sticks to it. He keeps everything short, so that when a song falls flat ('African Man'), at least it doesn't hang around for long. For lyrics, Pop strings together a series of catch-phrases, some of which cohere and others not, but all showing Pop's charisma and off-the-wall humour better than any of his other releases to date ('I'm bored / I'm the chairman of the bored / I'm a lengthy monologue / I'm living like a dog / I'm bored'). For variety, there's one Doors-y, atmospheric track with cheesy sound effects and portentous keyboard line ('The Endless Sea'), and a ballad ('Angel') that might have been maudlin if not for the genuine quirkiness of Pop himself (as the strings swell, he sings tenderly 'I'd split my skull all for your love', and you're inclined to believe him). A tight, enjoyable album.