Saturday, November 17, 2018

The Dead Boys - Younger, Louder, and Snottier - The Rough Mixes (1997, Bomp)

To this day, I'm still trying to get my head wrapped around the term "rough mix."  Does this translate into "unmixed" or "casually mixed," or even "carelessly mixed?"  All I know is that pre-album mixes (or lack thereof) can sound palpably different from the finished product we pluck off the shelves.  In the case of the first Dead Boys album, Young, Loud and Snotty, the seminal punk record in question didn't sound particularly glossy in the first place.  On this incarnation of the LP, the overarching effect is less bass-y, Cheetah Chrome's guitar wails are a tad more prominent, are the background vocals are more discernible...and that's "roughly" (sorry, couldn't resist) the extent of the discrepancies.  I'm not privy to the fact if actual demos exist for YL&S, but I couldn't imagine them sounding to far off the mark from these unfettered takes.

Young, Loud and Snotty isn't one of my desert island picks, but it did make an impact.  It's even more rollicking at times than Never Mind the Bollocks, not to mention less calculated.  The Dead Boy's follow-up, We've Come For Your Children is nearly as potent as their debut but is rarely if ever mentioned.  Funny that.  Anyway, the Boys found a replacement fill-in for Stiv Bators a few years ago.  They've commenced touring, and have even gone to the effort of re-recording YL&S with said replacement.  Will wonders never cease...

01. Sonic Reducer
02. All This and More
03. What Love Is
04. Not Anymore
05. Ain't Nothin' to Do
06. Caught With The Meat In Your Mouth
07. Hey Little Girl
08. I Need Lunch
09. High Tension Wire
10. Down in Flames


Alec Semicognito said...

I was just thinking this week about the trend in the 90s to remaster/remix classic 70s albums "the way we really meant it to sound," which just happened to be a lot closer to the neo-garage sound that had become hip. Raw Power, L.A.M.F., even Cheap Trick's In Color re-recorded with Steve Albini.

billybadbum said...

The story behind these rough mixes (cribbed from Stiv's liner notes to the original release) is that they were done for the band to take back to Cleveland with them to listen to before returning later to do the final mixes. Apparently resuscitated from Stiv's cassette copy (recorded over a retail cassette of the Who's "Tommy"!), the big selling point when they were first released in the mid-80's was that Genya Ravan had delegated these mixes to her studio assistant at the time, who had also played bass on the recordings as Jeff Magnum hadn't been able to make the trip to NYC. That assistant? A young fella named Bob Clearmountain, who'd made something of a reputation for himself in the ensuing years...

spavid said...

Thanks for chiming in folks. Never saw the original liner notes, so I appreciate the history lesson. Glad Stiv held onto that tape!

billybadbum said...

CORRECTION: It was a copy of Quadrophenia, not Tommy.

(Hey, these details are important!)