Husker Du
Savage Young Dü


3.5
great

Review

by former sputnik's home post-punk maester USER (123 Reviews)
December 3rd, 2017 | 15 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Goodbye, Grant Hart.

Hüsker Dü is a heck of a band. They’ve been blasting through the US underground scene back in the day (all hail grammar mistakes!). Their music encapsulates raw energy, harsh instrumentation and infectiously angry attitude. And even though the band itself dissolved some time ago, the members are still around and kicking. Greg Norton was mostly a side musician for other bands, changing them one after another. Grant Hart has been occupied with solo work up until his death in September of this year. And Bob Mould has been quite active on the solo front as well. So shortly said, they’ve done fine for themselves after the band’s break-up.

I should point out that this isn’t the band’s only 2017 release. There was also a brief EP, Extra Circus, in October, but that one was just a rather nice reminder of what the band once was with only one song decent out of the full four six minutes of it, formed of five cuts (yeah, this is pretty much my reviews of that too). Now it’s time to commemorate all that made the band truly great. It’s Hüsker Dü, bitches!

Savage Young Dü is a 69 tracks long compilation of all sorts of ***ery. There’s a gauntlet of demo recordings, some live performances, a bunch of originals and B-sides and a couple of session plays. It’s a massive collection, although each song barely surpasses the 2 minute mark (some do, but most don’t). Song after song, it’s a beautiful, albeit coarse, tribute to some of America’s most influential punks. Heartbreakingly crushing in its roughness and skincrawling in its occasional repetition under various circumstances, it’s a doozie all throughout for the fans only, cause who else will love this as much as we do? So let’s get to it:


Demos:

“Do You Remember?” A catchy little tune with a lot of staying value done in the band’s best traditions; it’s a typical Husker Duzie.
“Sore Eyes” Building intro, driving instrumentation, vocals that don’t give a ***, production worth a ***. It’s a beauty in its own right.
“Can’t See You Anymore” Poetic in lyrics and instrumental play, this song is so touching in how soulful and truthful it is.
“Picture of You” If there’s something that could be considered a songwriting trademark in Hüsker Dü’s repertoire, it’s their command of melody and slightly pissed attitude, in spite of often romantic and heartfelt themes. This song encapsulates that perfectly.
“The Truth Hurts” Just imagine how this song might kick, had it been given better production. Still, even with how ridiculously off the arrangement and the quality of the sound is, the howled chorus “Truth huuuuurts, truth huuuuurts” punches like a mother***er. Not to mention the stabbing guitar solo in the second half. It’s a maniacal song with fantastic progression and songwriting. You can’t ask for more (well, the production maybe, but that’s all).
“Do the Bee” Borderline awful sound. Love it for it!
“Nuclear Nightmare” ^ that again + kick-ass guitar solo.
“All I’ve Got to Lose is You” Such a driving, fun track. It is layered all throughout with the most exuberant riffs, beating drumming, nonchalant vocals declaring the most banally poetic romanticisms. It’s a Dü as we love them.

Rehearsals:

“Chinese Rocks” It might actually be more fun hearing the band during their rehearsals than on their official work and live performances. They are able to express themselves in ways they want, but don’t necessarily care for on any other recordings. Speaking of which…
“Uncle Ron” …where else if not on rehearsal recordings will you hear the band shout like they’re some Oi! jocks?
“Data Control” Longwinded, obscure and dizzying. Uuuuuugggghhhh, yyyyeeeeaaahhh.

Lives:

“Insects Rule the World” The instrumental interplay is tremendous. The riffs are driving. The vocals are properly yelpy. The lyrics are smart. The audience is dead.
“You’re Too Obtuse” What is there to say about any of these live recordings? They are just like anything else on the record. But you also get to hear the occasional clapping and screeching of the audience.
“Outside” In order to have a fantastic song as a result of group effort you need proper interplay. In order to achieve proper interplay level you need good chemistry. In order to have good chemistry you need grand enthusiasm. In order to have grand enthusiasm you need to know what you’re doing. Hüsker Dü know what the *** they are doing like nobody else.
“Sexual Economics” Fun, scummy track. Yay for that.
“What Went Wrong” Bassy, crass, brass, coarse and tough as nails.

Originals/B-Sides:

“Statues” Dü still try to shove this period of their discography down our throats. And, y’know, under certain circumstances and mood, it does do the trick. It’s yelpy, whiny and pissed. So it has that going for it.
“Amusement” One of the slower cuts on here, but still a decent enough time-spender. It has that nice ‘***-it’ attitude, so that’s something.
“Writer’s Cramp” Hands down, the best produced track on here. Wavy, blistering track of enormous fun proportions. It’s a goodie good.
“Let’s Go Die” What is the best kind of repetitive? The one, where the repeated part is actually good.

Other lives:

“Walk Within the Wounded” Can’t hear the vocals that well, points down.
“Industrial Grocery Store” In spite of the fact that it’s a terribly recorded live performance, this song has wonderfully beating drumline. I just wish that it had a little more punch to it in every other way too.
“Drug Party” This sounds exactly as you’d assume something about a drug party would sound. Drugged up.
“Call On Me” This sounds a bit too much like Wipers’ “When It’s Over”… all down to the production even.
“Termination” Another slower cut, building that explosion up. There’s no explosion, though.
“I’m Tired of Doing Things Your Way” yeah..nah.. better to be ther than to listen to it here.
“Stick It to Me” Raw emotion acknowledged, but why is this record’s sound getting worse the further it goes?
“Wheels” The clashing sounds at the background almost make this an Industrial track, but the bass and the vocals are quick to remind us that we are indeed listening to the raw, raw, raw, raw recording of someone’s possible mental breakdown.
“All Tensed Up” One of the most beatdown-like cuts on here with some of the most intricate drumming detail intelligible. Nice.
“Don’t Try to Call” As cool as a one-minute Husk-Düsk track goes, it’s furious, raw, powerful and properly pissed.
“I’m Not Interested” …and a perfect segway into the following song. This one’s pretty much the same, but the tune is slightly different. Still fun as ***ing ***ity ***.
“Guns at My School” The only downside to this beast is that it doesn’t really end, it cuts to…
“Push the Button” …this, which is at least a really nice compensation.
“Gilligan’s Island” Minus points for the obnoxious screeching sound at the beginning, plus points for the insane solo at the end.
“MTC” That intro instrumentation, even though it goes for about two seconds tops, it is still damn fine. The rest is as fun and typical as you’d expect.
“Don’t Have a Life” Oh man, that tangling bass at the background, while the rest is just a pure chaos. This sort of purposefully disorganised tightness of musical structure I really appreciate in my Punk.
“You’re Naïve” You’re naïve if you think this’ll give you time to breath.
“Strange Week” A celebration of all things crazy amidst the life’s mundanity.
“Big Sky” …and a celebration of tiny beauties amidst the very same grey sameness of existence.
“Ultracore” For a song with a title as tough-sounding as this, this is surprisingly not the most shredding piece on the album.
“Let’s Go Die” This is Hüsker Dü at their angriest and most ferocious. The track is structured just like every other track on here; it starts and ends exactly the same way, blasting through with vicious instrumentation and shouting vocals. It’s just a ride to behold.
“Won’t Say a Word” Most hypnotic riff, most wavy vocals, most driving drums. It turns into…
“Don’t Try It” …the most traditionally melodically structured track with rhythmic drums and tuneful vocals. It’s quite a fun little experience.
“Private Hell” It’s odd to describe a 3 minute song as one of the longest, but it definitely is (wait for the next one then). It has a clear progression, clean play, calmer (oddly enough) approach. It has a biting sound and that’s about it.
“Diane” By being essentially the same as everything else on here, but way longer, this song accomplishes what no other managed to: it is utterly hypnotic and magnetic. It pulses with emotion, raw energy and beatdown musical technique. It’s quite an experience even separately from the whole album.
“Sex Dolls” While not standing out significantly compared to some of the other tracks on here, this song may be the band’s most in-your-face statement, shouting “We’re homosexuals” at the early 80s audience was bound to stir some feathers.

Other originals/B-sides:

“In a Free Land” A tad repetitive, but ultimately more effective for it.
“What Do I Want?” From a slightly overlong track to a slightly too short, but feeling long as hell, for how raging it sounds.
“M.I.C.” I think I’ll learn how to play guitar like Bob Mould by the end of this album just by listening to it.

In a Free Land Session:

“Target” Cool opening drums, conniving guitar tune as it goes on and progresses.
“Signals from Above” I know this’ll sound weird, but with the sharp, screeching sound the guitars on here make, this comes off as the most Metal song Hüsker Dü ever made.

Yet another batch of originals/B-Sides:

“From the Gut” Possibly the most single-value song on here with a slapping, menacing “*** you” attitude.
“Blah, Blah, Blah” The SOOOOOOOLLLOOOO!
“Punch Drunk” I enjoy the dysrhythmia… yeah… that’s it.
“Bricklayer” Almost Metalcore sound on this one and almost ear-piercing solo too.
“Afraid of Being Wrong” There is no better way to highlight your point than to slap the listeners in the face with it and push it shoutingly down their throats with ravage instrumentation.
“Sunshine Superman” What is this? Finger snapping sound? Didn’t expect that… and the fact that this is the mildest song on here, easily.
“Signals from Above” This is not drone. This is the distortion.
“Everything Fall Apart” The most melodic cut on the whole album.
“Wheels” Eh, *** it. I wrote all I needed about it already.
“Target” Surprisingly anthemic and musically diverse, with clapping effects, key changes and group vocals. Good lord, yes please.
“Obnoxious” You know that feeling you get when you are tired, but you are about to experience something you know will be good, so throughout all the experience you are just merely half-present? Yeah… yeah.
“Gravity” Structurally conceptual and melodically intriguing. This is a hella song.

Yet another batch of lives:

“Do You Remember?” *** it, this just makes me want to see them live, which I never managed to do.
“Travel in the Opposite Car” I understand that this is a live recording and good sound is more than unlikely, but I just can’t get over the awfulness of how it sounds.
“It’s Not Funny Anymore” Just like any other version of this song, it’s kicking, punching, scratching and viscerally vicious.
“Real World” In spite of its speed, I’d say that this song is quite patient. It goes on for quite some time, but in that expresses the most anguished anger and as it goes on, that feeling gets stronger and stronger and stronger and stronger.
“Out on a Limb” The best sounding crap of the worst sounding crap.
“It’s Not Fair” Compilations like these don’t really need a grand finisher, but this one delivers. A six minutes long track that serves as a musical deconstruction of sound. It starts rather aggressively (as they usually do) and then develops into an oddments of sound, where instruments one by one fall off and the remaining ones become more distorted and loud the longer they go, eventually falling into a certain musical pit of despair. Exhilarating song.


You could say that Savage Young Dü is exactly as the title suggests, the most youthful Dü release ever, in every way imaginable. It’s a collection of the band’s recordings from their younger years, but also has their most juvenile approach, young energy and enthusiasm and above all, it comes at the perfect time for the band to recall their youth and remind themselves of the carefree past full of sweetness and roughest beauty there is. I know this was released prior to Grant’s death, but still, it’s a perfect farewell gift.



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user ratings (10)
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Papa Universe
December 3rd 2017


22503 Comments


Uni’s review roll 21/50

Good god, this took forever and it still looks like shit. Track-by-tracks, never again. Spent three days trying to give this an appropriate amount of listens and then about four days trying to find 70 synonyms to describe “This is cool, rough and enjoyable.” Good lord!

butcherboy
December 3rd 2017


9464 Comments


Track by track!! Nice one, Uni.. Possssss

Papa Universe
December 3rd 2017


22503 Comments


take as much enjoyment out os this as you can, butch, cause you won't ever see me doing track-by-tracks again.

BlackwaterPork
December 3rd 2017


4390 Comments


Holy shit...

Papa Universe
December 3rd 2017


22503 Comments


"2 out of 5 thought this review was well written"

oh, fuck you

TheSpaceMan
December 3rd 2017


13612 Comments


"They’ve been blasting through the US underground scene back in the day."

youre operating in conflicting tenses here

Papa Universe
December 3rd 2017


22503 Comments


huh, so I am.. eh, I'm too lazy and busy now, let there be a mistake for everyone to see. at least I can now justify the negs.

TheSpaceMan
December 3rd 2017


13612 Comments


lol nice own it!

Papa Universe
December 3rd 2017


22503 Comments


fuck it, next review will be conceptually built on mistakes

Papa Universe
December 3rd 2017


22503 Comments


and it'll be a big release too, before all the genuine reviews come it, there i'll be all confident and bold and proudly will i proclaim to all "thas that not good shite, mate. that that never mean no good at all, none, aye?" thae will be, mate

Papa Universe
December 3rd 2017


22503 Comments


who would have guessed that an account dedicated to being anti-sinternet would turn out to be a nice lad? thank you

Papa Universe
December 3rd 2017


22503 Comments


spending a month on Sputnik leads to it naturally

Papa Universe
December 3rd 2017


22503 Comments


"And one yourself, just make it right."
- Johnny Vegas

BMDrummer
December 3rd 2017


15084 Comments


rip grant hart :[

SteakByrnes
December 4th 2017


29448 Comments


( U w U )



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