This month occurred the 40th anniversary of two records: Floyd’s Dark Side of The Moon and Iggy’s and the Stooges’ Raw Power. And guess what? One is a bland, pompous and magniloquent opus of studio wizardy. The other is the greatest r’n’r album. Ever. Obviously if you think that r’n’r is basically a Chuck Berry riff played with your amp up on 11 on a Bo Diddley beat thumped on a 2 piece drum kit.
Uno dei più famosi dischi live di tutti i tempi. Per due ragioni.
1_Perché è la messa in scena di un dramma: l’annichilimento di una delle più grandi r’n’r band di tutti i tempi, Iggy & the Stooges. Tornati dall’inghilterra, dove hanno registrato quel capolavoro ineguagliabile che è Raw Power, abbandonati dal loro management (MainMan, occupato con the rise of Ziggy Stardust…), si imbarcano in un tour della provincia americana fin dall’inizio destinato al fallimento. Gli Stooges nella formazione a cinque sbattono il muso contro l’apatia, l’indifferenza e il disinteresse del Big Nowhere americano, fino all’ultimo concerto al Michigan Palace di Detroit fotografato in questo Metallic KO.
2_Perché questo psicodramma r’n’r, questa sfida continua all’audience viene ritratta dalla penna di Lester Bangs, il più grande giornalista rock di tutti i tempi, in un grandioso pezzo di letteratura americana contemporanea. Un breve estratto:
The audience, which consisted largely of bikers, was unusually hostile, and Iggy, as usual, fed on that hostility, soaked it up and gave it back and absorbed it all over again in an eerie, frightening symbiosis. “All right,” he finally said, stopping a song in the middle, “you assholes wanta hear ‘Louie, Louie,’ we’ll give you ‘Louie, Louie.'” So the Stooges played a forty-five-minute version of “Louie Louie,” including new lyrics improvised by the Pop on the spot consisting of “You can suck my ass / You biker faggot sissies,” etc.
By now the hatred in the room is one huge livid wave, and Iggy singles out one heckler who has been particularly abusive: “Listen, asshole, you heckle me one more time and I’m gonna come down there and kick your ass.” “Fuck you, you little punk,” responds the biker. So Iggy jumps off the stage, runs through the middle of the crowd, and the guy beats the shit out of him, ending the evening’s musical festivities by sending the lead singer back to his motel room and a doctor. I walk into the dressing room, where I encounter the manager of the club offering to punch out anybody in the band who will take him on. The next day the bike gang, who call themselves the Scorpions, will phone WABX-FM and promise to kill Iggy and the Stooges if they play the Michigan Palace on Thursday night. They do (play, that is), and nobody gets killed, but Metallic K.O. is the only rock album I know where you can actually hear hurled beer bottles breaking against guitar strings.