Perry Ellis’ love for the music of Bob Mould is well known around these parts; Pax himself probably rolled his eyes when he heard the yelps of glee when Mould’s latest release, the concert DVD Circle of Friends, hit the Ellis doorstep this week.
I was not disappointed. This shit rocks. It rocks large. It rocks HUGE. And it spans Mould’s 25+-year career, featuring songs from his days fronting Husker Du, Sugar and from his solo works. Not to belabor the point (again) here, but if you like any of the “alternative” bands from the 90s you need to give this guy a listen. He invented most of the sounds those bands incorporated into their own sounds.
At least half of the songs on this DVD are in the Perry Ellis Pantheon of Killer Tunes–The Act We Act, A Good Idea, Changes, Hoover Dam, See A Little Light, Hardly Getting Over It, I Apologize, Chartered Trips, Celebrated Summer, Egøverride, Makes No Sense At All–the list goes on and on. It’s fucking terrific.
And the backing band is killer too–Rich Morel (Mould’s DJ partner on the gay nightclub scene in D.C.), bassist Jason Narducy and Brendan Canty, best known as the drummer for Fugazi.
As a man known to have dabbled in little drumming myself, I can’t say enough about how great Canty is on this DVD. It’s incredible. He’s got Keith Moon’s maniacal “there’s no place another fill won’t do nicely” combined with Ginger Baker’s impeccable, implacable rhythmic sense. Just incredible.
The famously curmudgeonly Mould, having involuntarily come out of the closet a few years back, seems to have found a nice space to live in, and it shows. I’ve seen him live about six or seven times, and in this performance he seems much more comfortable in his own skin. He evn smiles and cracks a few jokes. It’s nice to see.