Bob Mould

Bob Mould's latest album, Body of Song, comes with a blurb advertising the disc as a "return to his signature guitar sound." Though there's some honesty to the PR, as he plays the ol' six-string on every track, take it with a grain of salt, because the album doesn't sound all too much like his days in Hüsker Dü. In the slow-burning opener "Circles," Mould laments, "I've lost my one in a million," without a hint of the ass-shaking beats to come--the song is jarringly followed with "(Shine Your) Light Love Hope," whose chorus is sung through a Cher-like vocoder. Sugar compatriot David Barbe plays bass on the cheesy "High Fidelity" and the bitter "Gauze of Friendship," a reprimand of a deceitful friend that begins with an acoustic guitar and ends with a hard-rock free-for-all, while Fugazi drummer Brendan Canty guests throughout the album, even contributing some very un-Fugazi disco beats on a few tracks. Mould uses the vocoder again on "I Am Vision, I Am Sound"; maybe there's truth to the stereotype that gay men love Cher, even gay punk godfathers. But the album ends with a six-and-a-half-minute guitar jam, "With Your Beating Heart the Prize," as if to settle, once and for all, that the guitar is still where his heart is.

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