Sunday, August 22, 2010

Kill City Gets the Full Reissue Treatment

Ed. Note - My love of Iggy Pop is well documented. But just to clarify, I love Raw Power, even the reissue. However, Fun House is my favorite Stooges album, but I digress. OK, now that I've said that, I can continue.

When the Stooges imploded in 1974, Iggy Pop and semi-new Stooge James Williamson began recording some demos with the expressed desire of earning a record contract. Iggy, strung out on heroin and generally haggard, worked on the material with Williamson while on weekend furloughs from the mental institution he was residing in at the time. These sessions did not lead to a record deal, and Williamson parted ways with Pop, working as a session guitarist, producer, and finally to head the Music Technologies Department at Sony, a position he held until Pop plucked him out of retirement to come back full time in the retooled Stooges following Ron Asheton's untimely death in 2009.

Iggy needed a saviour, and lo and behold found one in brilliant superstar David Bowie. Bowie literally pulled Pop from the gutter, signed him to his MainMan Mgmt. company and produced and helped write not one but two Pop masterpieces, the oft mentioned, immortal The Idiot and Lust For Life.

Following the success of those albums, Kill City was released to the public as is and warts and all. While not being as brilliant as Raw Power (nothing could really) Kill City is pretty good, straight forward, Stone-sy style rock and roll.

Speaking to BLURT earlier this year, Williamson was enthusiastic about the project, saying, "I finished mixing Kill City and we're going to release that this year, as well. A friend of mine is a really, really good engineer, Ed Cherney. He went in and mixed the album with my help. This guy has done records for everybody and he just made this record sound, well, like it should have sounded all along. It has finally reached its full potential and that's exciting. We're now going to remaster that and do all the artwork and Pop is going to rerelease it, probably late summer early fall."

I am very excited to hear this release, as I feel that there is a gem of an album beneath the hiss. The best possible thing they could do is remove the saxophone from all of the songs - it takes away much of the impact from the tracks, wafting in all soft and buttery on top of some really visceral guitar work. Hopefully Iggy realizes this and makes the move, as he is not shy from making significant, if controversial moves when remastering his past work, as he had in his Raw Power remaster of 1997.

The Kill City reissue will finally see the light of day on October 19th.

For more good stuff, read this interview with James Williamson over at Blurt.

UPDATE: Below is the trailer - good stuff!