Bob Mould

Body of Song Deluxe Edition (Yep Roc)

ACL Music Festival Reviews

Bob Mould

Body of Song Deluxe Edition (Yep Roc)

Once more, Bob Mould has matured, this time with the help of Fugazi knob-twiddler Don Zientara and Fugazi drummer Brendan Canty. That doesn't mean Body of Song Deluxe evinces the spine-cracking urgency of Hüsker Dü or the buzzsaw melody of Sugar. Instead, this 2-CD box (the deluxe packaging version comes complete with a shirtless photo of Bob), is like a poppier version of the tightest Guided by Voices albums tied up in a 4/4 beat. Songs like "(Shine Your) Light Love Hope" and "Paralyzed" include the wildly popular vocoder used on that Cher song about love and that Kid Rock song about God, and the bouncy "I Am Vision, I Am Sound" attempts to work out the differences between electronica and rock. Eventually, that Mould-y ferocity rears its head; "Best Thing" and most of disc two are more reminiscent of the man's fist-shaking Eighties. Mould also tries a little tenderness in terms of his lyrics, which have oft been filled with vitriol. On "High Fidelity," he looks for a soulmate with "So you're branching out, trying something new. What am I to do?" Mould has matured, and he's found a balance. But the heart of rock & roll is still beating. (Sunday, 5:30pm, Heineken stage)

***

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