Monday, April 21, 2008

Refresher Course on the Replacements

Rhino is releasing a series of the first four Replacements albums - Sorry Ma, Forgot to Take Out the Trash, Stink, Hootenanny, and Let It Be - and Pitchfork's Mark Richardson was kind enough to review.

The first place I ever heard of the Replacements was a short snark in Creem magazine, accompanied by a photo. It's impossible to define what it is that a text and/or visual outlet has to do to raise my curiosity enough to buy a band's album, unheard, but Creem did that and the next day I went to the record store and picked up Let It Be. Over the course of the next few weeks was added everything that came before and, when it came out, Tim.

It was a time when the bands preferred by the more forward-thinking (or was it present?) music fans were being pushed out of mainstream culture, in favor of rock music that was so safe even your English teacher could tolerate it, before they had barely had a chance to be heard. And there was this glorious mess, music so raw that to enjoy it was like having a secret decoder ring where the message always came out the same: fuck 'em all.

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