Bob Mould
District Line
On Bob Mould’s seventh solo release---and it’s hard to believe there have been seven
---the dance/electronica influences have continued from previous LPs Modulate and Body of Song. You can hear the dance-floor groove on “Shelter Me” and you’ll find the rockers on tracks such as “Stupid Now” and “The Silence Between Us,” to name just two. But it’s the more melodic tunes like “Who Needs To Dream” and “Old Highs, New Lows” that shine on this release. Mould hasn’t lost his ability to create a memorable hook with a great pop sensibility. The majority of the songs are based on relationships---both good and bad---but you can still hear a mellower person---a man more at ease---behind the song. This is a man who, with age, has become more comfortable in his own skin and in the world. In “Return To Dust” the 47-year-old sings: “Growing old, it’s hard to be the angry young man.” This is not a man trying to find his place among the pop-punk groups dominating today. After all, this is the man who helped create the sound more than 20 years ago, starting with Husker Du then, following that, with Sugar. The closer on District Line, “Walls in Time,” is a welcome hold-over from the Workbook era. This latest album shows Mould still has a few tricks left in his bag.
Aaron Hartling
categories: Coast pick

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