See A Little Light: The Trail of Rage and Melody, is an autobiography by Bob Mould, co-written by Michael Azerrad. I enjoyed reading this book, but only because I’m a fan of Hüsker Dü/Sugar/Bob Mould. His music is covered in some detail, and in that the book benefits. After 2000, Mould makes changes and his music and book suffers. Personally he comes across as a self-loathing gay man, cold, with a lot of issues. Although he’s smart and talented Mould has trouble expressing himself. He lets issues smoulder until he explodes causing much unhappiness to friends and co-workers. Mould comes across as sympathetic- one would hope so in an autobiography. If the music stories were better (more fleshed out) and the editor worked harder (so the book doesn’t drag so bad near the end) I might be able to recommend it. Only read it if you’re a fan and love reading about popular music.
I got the idea to replace ‘Walk Away’ on Beaster with ‘Sacrifice/Let There Be Peace’ -p193
Beaster is the heaviest album I own, which is saying a lot. Alice In Chains and Metallic have nothing on Bob Mould when his rage is released. ‘Walk Away’ by contrast is this light pop organ tune that just seems wildly out of place.
“Those six songs had very few words, but I had a sense of what they were all going to be about- a religious theme, questioning religion… My Catholic roots crop up from time to time in my music, like on ‘Sacrifice/Let There Be Peace’ on Black Sheets of Rain, with its images of self-flagellation, martyrdom, heresy; the struggles between right and wrong, blessing and blasphemy, and sinner and saint.”
‘Sacrifice’ would be the perfect song to replace ‘Walk Away’ on my Sugar playlist.
Mould comes back into fold of the Catholic Church in 2005 as a cafeteria Catholic.
“Playing these shows with Pete Townshend and witnessing that touching moment between Pete and Joey [Ramone], two people who had such a profound and lasting impact on my life and work, got me really excited about playing music in front of people again.” -p248
“Nine days after that, the Last Dog And Pony Show tour began in Fargo, North Dakota. -p265
I was at that concert. It was one of my favorite concerts. I always thought Mould seemed pissed off. I thought it was because there were so few people there. It turns out it was his guitarist Michael Cerveris.
“His amps were loud, and despite the important lesson I’d learned from the 1989 tour, I had yet again allowed another guitarist to clutter up my frequency range. And just like in 1996, I said nothing about it. I slowly stewed.”
I didn’t realize it at the time but Cerveris had played the lead in ‘The Who’s Tommy’ on Broadway.
Media & Hardware:
Circle of Friends DVD, Live From London (Hüsker Dü, 1985)[Out of Print?]
MXR Distortion + (Yellow stomp box) -p79
Yamaha APX acoustic 12 string guitar -p155
My Bloody Valentine “Loveless” -p186