David Bowie had a bit of renaissance lately with 2013’s The Next Day, though it would be amazing to find out how many fans of the Ziggy-Stardust era are actually driving down today’s highway blaring “Where Are We Now?” As I am getting to know Iggy Pop’s latest album with The Stooges, one of only five since their first release in 1969, Ready to Die, I am wondering the same thing about Iggy’s fans. There is a disjunction between the old audiences and the new, though the music is certainly just as good—especially in regards to the output of Iggy Pop and The Stooges.
It’s one thing for a Janis Joplin fan not to give Alabama Shakes a chance, quite another for an Iggy Pop and the Stooges fan not to give Iggy Pop and the Stooges a chance. Raw Power is generally considered the best album by Iggy and the Stooges, and for good reason—it’s an amazing album of its time. So is Ready to Die.
Iggy Pop and the Stooges Now
There’s plenty to offend the listener here, though perhaps nothing of the calibre of 1980’s “Dog Food” from Soldier. Still, “DD’s” seems to have gotten some attention, which is pretty funny. Then there is “Gun,” “Sex and Money,” and “Burn”—all suitable to Iggy albums of long ago—and Stooges albums too. Looked at realistically, this is one of the very best albums by Iggy Pop and the Stooges, ever.
There are also some oddly mature and somewhat depressing tunes as well, foremost of which might be “Unfriendly World” and “The Departed.” Those tunes are why it’s Iggy Pop and the Stooges in 2013. The rest are just great tunes by Iggy and the current version of The Stooges.