mercoledì 30 marzo 2011

Bands You Should Know: The Wildhearts

Ladies and Gents, the greates rock band on the planet.

Yes, i said that. I have my taste, i like all sorts of musicians and groups. I have my history and my phases. But these guys carved themselves in the fable that my life has been like a crop circle.

Once upon a time, i was a youngster and my nights went on at the pace of booze and rock. I had many things in my life but none as powerful as music. And i had great firends, the kind you remeber forever, with which i had those type of adventures you end up recalling and retelling a million times. It was the time of seeing the sun rise in a car, smoking weed and drinking cheap wine on a hill. Filling up cars and riding the night.

There were all sorts of manners of rock and roll back then. The Rolling Stones, The New York Dolls, Cheap Trick and Ramones...

Still bewtween all those giants, this gang of brits stood up.

Before then, i enpcuntered their music while i was doping my earlier yravels in britain. The grea Ginger, the mastermind and leadcer of the band, had succeded again inc reating a piece of rocking hits with their shiny album "P.H.U.Q." anbd they were, as they pften would be, for bad and for good, the "nezt big thing" in UK. I bought the album, enjoyed but forgot about it. It was a different time.

Years after, one of my best friends came crashing into them again. This time with one of their earlier works "Earth Vs The Wildhearts". And not that coincidentally, i had just came back from Dublin, wehre in one of my boozy days of roaming in the city, i did that great thing that in the itunes age, got lost: i had wandered in a Tower Records store (a chain of music stores that gave me countless memories before dying) put on a pair of LOUD headphones and hgeard the openr from their latest album. And was shocked.

See the thing with them is that they had a magical alchemy: they played powerful rocking riffs, that seemed to come out from the magical box of the greatest guitar riffs of all time. And over that they placed the greatest harmonize3d refrains ever. And i aint saying this lightly.

Their leader, Ginger, has been widely recgnizede as one of the greatest, most talented songwriters and guitar rif makersa of modern rock history. The man could create perfect songs in his sleeps. To make it clear he usually created an album of perfect songs. Than published b-sides or unreleased songs (and i dont mean one or two, i mean 20 or 30) that were ven BETTER than the maintracks. And that made the other great aspect of The Wildhearts: once you got all their main albums, you hadnt even begun knowing them. They has a back catalogue of tracks that was endless, and seemingly flawless. Thousands and thousands of perfect pieces of pop meets rock meets metal meets rocknroll meets.... Well just perfect music.

It could be the Motorhead/Metallica/Cheap Trcik mixture of "Sucker Punch" opr "Greetings From Shitsville" or "My baby is a Headfuck"....

Or the pop rock joys of "I wanna go where the people go".

Or even the abarasive NIN with a heart of catchy psychosis of their giant "fuck you" to the industry, "Endless Nameless"....

Cause, you see, the band was abunch of angry, talented junkies. Ginger especially, is in and out of drugs and mental instability one time out of two. ANd loves to get to the peak of the montain to break it all down. So after getting a great contract with a label, they release a noisy, un-commercial monster like "endless...", where still, theres magical tracks like "Junkenstein" (a track that gave me my most know internet alias) with "you listen once and you never forget" choruses that still haunt me.

Then they disappear and then pop up again. They were the soundtrack of my life. I have cried, laughed, partied, loved and hated to their songs. I saw them in concert and i turned into melted butter. Like i was sixteen again.

Lately, their albums have gotten more standardized, like they decided to become "normal". The genius is still there but its... caged. Then Ginger, after pursuing a solo career that spawned some weird studio records and one live-acoustic album that i forced into my main hangin pub, has focused on different project. Still, he's there and he seems unstoppable. Even if he is a family man that occasionally goes into heroin again and then suddenly cleans up.

I will never ever ever forget them though. Anyone who has heard their magic knows. They are the band you fall in love with and becomes your obsession. They are my heart in music. They always will be.

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