No, All Shook Down Is Just As Bad As You Remember

When The Replacements’ All Shook Down came out in the fall of 1990, I was a junior in high school. I’d been a Replacements fan for exactly two years, but even as a 16-year-old, I knew that this was the sound of a band sucking. A few of my friends went out and bought this record, anyway, despite my protests, thinking this was some cool new band. No, it was a formerly amazing band on its sad, last leg. The Awl’s Dave Bry perfectly encapsulates this record’s lackluster effect:

…by the time All Shook Down came out, they [The Replacements] were not at their peak. They were close to calling it quits and they knew it, it seemed. [Paul] Westerberg intended a lot the songs to be solo material, apparently. Session musicians play the parts of band members on many of the tracks. On the whole, it’s not nearly as good as their best work.

“Not nearly as good as their best work” I have to assume is some kind of intentionally subtle understatement. Bry backtracks slightly upon reflection, and decides that maybe it’s not so bad after all. But that’s where he and I differ. It is just as bad. In fact, sucks. It shouldn’t even have the name The Replacements on the cover. The production is a schlocky, generic mess. And session musicians instead of the band members? Are you kidding me? That’s the death knell right there…

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VIDEO: The Pretty Reckless “Make Me Wanna Die”

After reading what Tim Gunn had to say about his experience with Taylor Momsen on the set of Gossip Girl, all of my suspicions were confirmed: Taylor Momsen is just as insufferably annoying as one might expect. The concept for this video by her “band” The Pretty Reckless is, uh, swinging low on the cultural scale. It features the 17-year old starlet in various degrees of fetishistic undress… but with fire! Well, Courtney Love never was a looker. So, Momsen has that going for her.

New Fiona Apple Record Due Next Spring

Fiona Apple doesn’t exactly follow the rules of the promotional machine, evidenced by her six year absence between 1999’s When the Pawn… and 2005’s Extraordinary Machine. Staying true to her terms, Apple is readying her fourth album for a spring 2011 release, according to reports via Billboard, which would make yet another six-year break between records. I saw Apple on that weird IFC show Iconoclasts, where two celebrities who you’d never imagine hanging out are forced to hang out and ask each other questions. This particular episode paired Apple with Quentin Tarantino, which was bizarre but kind of awesome, and at some point in the show Apple said she only makes music when she has something to say. My God, how more bands should follow suit. Given how personal all of her records are, I can certainly oblige such an indulgence.