Husker Du: New Day Rising LP

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Husker Du: Bob Mould (vocals, guitar); Grant Hart (vocals, drums); Greg Norton (bass). Personnel: Bob Mould (vocals, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, piano, percussion, background vocals); Grant Hart (vocals, piano, drums, percussion, background vocals); Greg Norton (background vocals). Recording information: Nicollet Studios, Minneapolis, MN (07/1984). Beginning with its incendiary title track--a battle cry consisting of three chords and three howled words (guess which)--1985's NEW DAY RISING is an audio hand grenade showcasing the increasing might of Husker Du. The record has the hallmarks of the mid- to late-period Husker records: impassioned vocals, Mould's buzzsaw guitar, Hart's crisp, trebly drumming and not a whole lot of bottom. Bob Mould sounds as angry as ever. His primal, sour-toned vocals seem to come straight from his viscera on such explosive numbers as "I Apologize" and "Powerline," but he also shows unexpected tenderness in moments like the hushed middle section and coda of the anthemic "Celebrated Summer." Grant Hart continues to present a slightly sunnier counterpoint to Mould's dark obsessions, especially on the incongruously cheerful "Books About UFOs" and the bouncy rocker "Terms of Psychic Warfare," but he still seethes on powerful cuts like "If I Told You" and "The Girl Who Lives on Heaven Hill." Slices of gleeful chaos like "How to Skin a Cat" and ""Whatcha Drinkin'" show the group's fondness for noise for noise's sake, and the closing "Plans I Make" is nothing short of a sonic meltdown.

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