4 of 4 thought this review was well written
Whether or not they’ve actually heard their albums, most people with a passing interest in indie rock are probably aware of Big Star and their songwriter Alex Chilton thanks to a well documented influence on the likes of Guided By Voices, R.E.M., Elliott Smith, The Replacements and frequent namedropping by many others. Adding in the fact that they never achieved commercial success despite writing a number of songs that could’ve/should’ve become FM radio staples, there’s a mystique around the band that tends to result in some pretty hyperbolic praise. Regardless, they wrote some undoubtedly great songs and there’s a bunch of them on Radio City
The second of their early 1970s trio of albums, it’s got a looser, more off the cuff feel than the debut #1 Record
and is all the better for it, but the foundation of jangly Byrds/Beatles inspired power-pop and downbeat country leanings remains intact. “September Gurls” is the one everyone talks about, but the classic “Daily Glaze” trumps it and other highlights like “You Get What You Deserve” “Back of a Car” and “Life is White” are probably more representative of the slightly rough around the edges mix of chiming pop and rock that comprises most of the album. As with other Big Star releases, inconsistency rears its head and uninteresting, run of the mill tracks like “Mod Lang” and “She’s A Mover” show that more straightforward hard rock wasn’t Chilton’s strength, but the best parts are enough to go at least some way towards living up to the legend.