Iggy and the Stooges | Raw Power: Legacy Edition (Columbia/Legacy)

The sound of Iggy and the Stooges has been a permanent fixture in the collections of rock’n’roll fans since their inception over forty years ago.

It was 1973.  The Stooges had officially broken up and Iggy Pop was in the midst of his growing heroin problem while heading off to London to record a solo album.  After scouring England for a rhythm section with new guitarist James Williamson, Pop decided it was time to call back some of the Stooges.  Brothers Ron and Scott Asheton responded, filling in the bass and drum positions respectively. What resulted would be an initially modest success for the band, reaching its apex at number 182 on Billboard, but would later become arguably one of the most classic examples of protopunk to come out of the first part of the 1970s. Thirty-seven years after the fact, the Stooges’ third studio album proves itself to be still just as raw and just as powerful as ever, and remains a seminal influence on underground rock’n’roll the world over. 

So what does the 2010 Legacy release offer that’s new? To start, for the first time on CD each track has been released as mixed on the original album by David Bowie (with the exception of “Search and Destroy” which was originally released as mixed by Pop).  This is significant, considering Pop’s fairly well-known disappointment at the first CD remix in 1989, and the subsequent 1997 remix done by Pop himself which was on a large scale rejected by fans as well as the Asheton brothers in favor of the mix on the initial 1973 album.

In addition, the two disc release includes Georgia Peaches on the second disc, an hour-long live recording of the October 1973 performance at Richards club in Atlanta.  As with most live recordings, the songs are extended a little and some vocals are added that aren’t on the album.  In addition to a few selections from the Raw Power track list, there are performances of “Head On,” “Heavy Liquid,” “Cock In My Pocket,” and “Open Up And Bleed.” Notably, the disc also contains the bonus studio tracks “Doojiman” from the 1972 sessions for Raw Power, and “Head On” from a 1973 New York rehearsal tape, recorded as the band was preparing for a U.S. tour being kicked off at the famous Max’s Kansas City.

The sound of Iggy and the Stooges has been a permanent fixture in the collections of rock’n’roll fans since their inception over forty years ago, and will be remembered best in my opinion by preserving the integrity of their early work.  The Legacy edition is a keystone in that end for its faithfulness to the original 1973 mastery, and helps cement the band into history. A | Jason Neubauer

RIYL: The Sonics, MC5, Lou Reed, Radio Birdman

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