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Paul Westerberg sounds nearly bereft, the money spent, the bottles broken, the giddy buzz ten years gone.
The rest of the band is surly and indifferent in turns.
The fact that Davis was aware that Jimi Hendrix was repeatedly dalliancing with his wife (the Funk/Diva legend Betty Davis) must have had an affect on the direction of his groove. In any case, this is an absolute monster of an album, an unrepentant middle finger to jazz snobs, and a down-on-the-corner statement that throbs and wobbles and ultimately refuses to resolve itself in any context.
It’s one of the most towering musical statements of the 20th century, a composition of 70’s black street life, the madness, the drugs, the hustle, the humanity. It sounds like every 15-year-old’s room in 1970–black lights, bongs, riffs, solos and Zap-boogie arrangements with plenty of guitar noodling to shore up the tweaked lyrics.
Having done an epic amount of street powder while getting handjobs in the groupie van is not enough.