Mudhoney was easily one of the best and most unappreciated bands from the northwest back in the ye old days of the early 90s, or GRUNGE as some people called it. This early offering, named after guitarists Mark Arm and Steve Turner’s fuzzboxes of choice showcases the band’s early singles and (in some cases) most enduring work. Drawing on many influences the band funnels their whole presentation through a distorted and twisted, no-nonsense pummeling of lo-fi radness they redefined punk and garage band music and help create a minor revolution. Oh and beer…I think there was some beer involved.
The thing about Mudhoney (and other awesome bands like, I dunno, The Rolling Stones) is they don’t try too hard and are always aware of their limitations. The songs are simple, even if they are 8 minutes long, the guitar solos often devolve into spirited noise, the rhythms recall all of the best garage stuff from the late 50s through the late 70s and the vocals are as often a shriek as a melody. But that’s ok because all of these elements combined with some really good songwriting make for some of the very best friggin’ rock and roll. Songs like their most famous single Touch Me I’m Sick, Sweet Young Thing, Mudride, and Need and a cover of The Dicks Hate the Police are all sludgy masterpieces. Even when the band gets sensitive on If I Think it doesn’t take too long before the song slams into overdrive to carry the listener away on an joyfully, inebriated journey. While other Seattle bands like Nirvana, Alice in Chains and Pearl Jam all went on to greatness and high sales, no record captures what it was like to be at a club show in in the late 80s/early 90s better than this and unlike Nirvana, for me it has aged incredibly well.