Friday, June 8, 2007


It isn't hard to make the case for Patti Smith as a punk rock progenitor based on her debut album, which anticipated the new wave by a year or so: the simple, crudely played rock & roll, featuring Lenny Kaye's rudimentary guitar work, the anarchic spirit of Smith's vocals, and the emotional and imaginative nature of her lyrics — all prefigure the coming movement as it evolved on both sides of the Atlantic. Smith is a rock critic's dream, a poet as steeped in '60s garage rock as she is in French Symbolism; "Land" carries on from the Doors' "The End," marking her as a successor to Jim Morrison, while the borrowed choruses of "Gloria" and "Land of a Thousand Dances" are more in tune with the era of sampling than they were in the '70s. Producer John Cale respected Smith's primitivism in a way that later producers did not, and the loose, improvisatory song structures worked with her free verse to create something like a new spoken word/musical art form: Horses was a hybrid, the sound of a post-Beat poet, as she put it, "dancing around to the simple rock & roll song."

1 Gloria 5:57
2 Redondo Beach 3:26
3 Birdland 9:15
4 Free Money 3:52
5 Kimberly 4:27
6 Break It Up 4:04
7 Land: Horses/Land of a Thousand Dances 9:25
8 Elegie 2:56
9 My Generation [live] 3:16


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Anonymous said...

and thanks!

/ Mossen

Anonymous said...

link is dead