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Friday, September 3, 2010
Perfect - Seven Days a Week (1997)
After the Replacements dissolved on July 4, 1991 in Chicago's fabled Grant Park, bassist Tommy Stinson (who along with frontman Paul Westerberg was the only other continuous Mat during the groups sordid tenure) still had to eat, if you know what I'm getting at. His next meal ticket was a rollicking and fitting successor to the Replacements called Bash & Pop who's 1993 platter, Friday Night is Killing Me, turned out to be their last. A noble effort, but not much of a commercial smash. A couple years on, Stinson relocated to L.A. and sought to forge a more "Perfect" union. Aided and abedded by bassist Robert Cooper, guitarist Marc Solomon, and the eponymously monikered skin pounder Gersh, Perfect was born, and a 1996 ep dubbed When Squirrels Play Chicken was conceived via Medium Cool/Restless Records. Perfect's muscular power pop, was no "replacement" for Minneapolis' fab-four, but consistently satisfying in their own right.
Met with critical acclaim and a slowly blossoming fanbase, Stinson and Co. had even higher hopes for the debut Perfect full-length, Seven Days a Week. With a slightly altered lineup which found Stinson back on bass guitar but still on lead vocals, 7 Days a Week was tracked in 1997, but due to shifting priorities with their label, the album was shelved and never released in it's original configuration. 2004 finally saw the release of most of these tracks on a slightly retooled version of Seven Days a Week, rechristened as Once, Twice, Three Times a Maybe, courtesy of Rykodisc Records. So what of the original version of the album? It's rumored that a few advance copies of the CD that were printed up had actually made it's way into the ether, but the MP3s I'm presenting strike me as being derived from a low generation cassette. Much has been talked about the absence of a track called "Peg Song" on the official Rykodsic release, but my version of Seven Days... features yet another song that didn't make it onto Once, Twice..., namely the excellent "Don't Look Down." Other bootleg versions tack on tracks from a 1995 Stinson solo performance at the Uptown in Minneapolis. The mixes here deviate slightly from those on the posthumous '04 release, so perhaps the real incentive is the inclusion of "Peg Song" and "Don't Look Down." Once, Twice, Three Times a Maybe is still available from Amazon (physically and digitally), and likely from iTunes as well so if you like what you hear consider spending a little green and support Perfect!