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Hard Stuff+
     

The Hard Stuff+

by Wayne Kramer
 

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While it made sense that a label inspired by the punk ethic the MC5 helped found put out Wayne Kramer's first full-on solo album, in many ways, The Hard Stuff sticks out like a sore thumb from the usual Epitaph fare -- namely, because it's not interested in toeing a particular sonic line. Kramer's youthful obsession with soul power

Overview

While it made sense that a label inspired by the punk ethic the MC5 helped found put out Wayne Kramer's first full-on solo album, in many ways, The Hard Stuff sticks out like a sore thumb from the usual Epitaph fare -- namely, because it's not interested in toeing a particular sonic line. Kramer's youthful obsession with soul power mixed with rough and ready noise, tempered by his older and wiser years but not lacking for energy, makes for a great full-on rock & roll album. Certainly when one compares this work with the neutered slop his Detroit contemporary Ted Nugent was churning out in the late '80s and into the '90s, there's little question who chose to rest on laurels and who decided to jump into things full on. Kramer's choice of musicians to work with doesn't hurt -- all of Claw Hammer back him up on a number of songs, including the great opening blast "Crack in the Universe," while elsewhere, the Melvins, Josh Freese, Keith Morris, Kim Shattuck, and even label boss Brett Gurewitz sit in. In a fine nod to Kramer's soul roots, Was (Not Was)'s Sweet Pea Atkinson, along with bassist James Jamerson, Jr., take a turn on the heavy groove "Pillar of Fire." Kramer's lyrics take on the wreckage of America with compassion for those stuck at the bottom, but it's his wailing guitar work, direct and powerful, that demonstrates best of all how you can't keep a good man down. Hearing the perversely beautiful sludge/slow jam of "Junkie Romance," Kramer demolishing the heroin chic image with the eye of a weathered survivor armed with wit and compassion, or the spoken word portrayal of an argument turned violent in "Incident on Stock Island" shows how his gifts are in full swing. Fine bonus: the untitled bonus track paying tribute to Kramer's personal hero Charles Bukowski. [The Hard Stuff+ edition features four bonus tracks: "So Long, Hank," the original version of "God's Worst Nightmare," "'Til the Police Come," and "Back to the Wasteland." The release also contains videos for "Crack in the Universe" and "Junkie Romance."]

Product Details

Release Date:
02/24/2009
Label:
Dm Records
UPC:
0827565001828
catalogNumber:
1008

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Wayne Kramer   Primary Artist,Bass,Guitar,Vocals,Spoken Word
Sweet Pea Atkinson   Vocals
Dale Crover   Percussion,Drums
King Buzzo   Vocals
Chris Bagarozzi   Guitar
Brett Gurewitz   Guitar,Vocals
Bruce Duff   Bass
Matt Freeman   Bass
Josh Freese   Drums
James Jamerson   Bass
Bob Lee   Drums
Keith Morris   Vocals
Brett Reed   Drums
Jon Wahl   Guitar,Harmonica
Rob Walther   Bass
Randy Bradbury   Bass
Kim Shattuck   Vocals
Mark Deutrom   Bass
Marjorie Kramer   Spoken Word

Technical Credits

Henry Rollins   Liner Notes,Author
Mick Farren   Composer
Wayne Kramer   Composer,Producer,Liner Notes
Joe Barresi   Engineer
Sally Browder   Engineer
Mackie Osborne   Artwork
Lech Kowalski   Video Director

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