also recommended New Day Rising (1985)
4 Although New Day Rising bristles with Mould’s customary riffing and wall-of-noise ‘shimmer’, the strength of these songs lies in their sense of melodic counterpoint: a simple, air-punching chorus prevents The Girl Who Lives On Heaven Hill from imploding under the weight of its own feedback, while the simmering momentum of Powerline is bookended by a trickle of crystalline harmonics. It’s moments like these that save this record from a paper-thin production sound and sloppy takes. Beyond the dissonance there’s a growing vulnerability in the group’s songwriting, such as the wounded, Replacements-esque harmonies of Terms Of Psychic Warfare.
Recommended track The Girl Who Lives On