Wednesday, January 7, 2015

V/A - Jabberjaw No. 1 7"

Mammouth (1994)

The first Jabberjaw CD was one of my favorite compilations back in the 90's.  It just had a little bit of everything on it and believe me I played it quite a bit.  I'd never really gone crazy trying to get the four 7"s that made up the original version of the compilation even though they don't tend to be particularly expensive.  However, when I decided that I wanted to complete the Unwound 7" collection, it would never be finished unless I owned this record.  So after a few weeks of end of the year and holiday wackiness, Unwound Wednesday is back.

We'll start out with Unwound as they are the entire reason I bought this 7".  Their contribution "Broken E Strings" is my absolute, hands down favorite Unwound song.  Its slow, quiet verse suddenly explodes into one of the more chaotic choruses you're likely to hear.  I could listen to this song over and over and over again.  Though the band had many highlights, you'll find none higher than this song.

The other 3 were never really among my favorites on the compilation.  I always found Helmet a bit too noisy, but always in a sterile kind of way that I didn't quite understand.  "Turned Out" is no exception.  I can't say it's inherently bad, but I can't say that I like it either.  "Borax" by Slug also isn't going to win any prizes from me.  It feels a little directionless, but it is quite loud.  So it's got that going for it.  Hammerhead's song "Cleaning Woman" would probably be my second favorite on this 7". It has a blazing fast guitar riff, pounding drums and although the singer is quite loud and shouts a lot, he never breaks down into an annoying scream.

Really this 7" is just all about that Unwound song.  It's just perfect.  You could interchange any other 3 bands around it and it would still be an absolutely essential purchase.  Or I guess you could by the Numero Group Unwound box set that has this song on it.  That way you'll also end up with a ton of other great Unwound songs.

Unwound - "Broken E Strings":

Helmet - "Turned Out":

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