Iggy and the Stooges, ‘Ready to Die’

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Aidin Vaziri | When Iggy Pop brought the Stooges’ “Raw Power”-era guitarist James Williamson back into the fold after 30 years, the intent was mainly to have an excuse to stay on the road. Somehow it turned into a set of 10 new songs. The last time these guys made an album together, the band split up, with the singer strung out in a mental hospital and – horror! – the sideman going back to school. “Ready to Die” brandishes much of the same manic energy as its predecessor, if only at a more sluggish pace. The handclap-strewn “Sex and Money” and swaggering “Dirty Deal” feel like genuine throwbacks, with the band writhing against melody and decent production (the album even clocks in at 34 minutes, just like the last one). There are new turns, too, the most peculiar of which is the closing ballad, in which the singer croons end-of-the-road observations such as “I can’t feel nothing real/ My light’s all burned out.” Things could end up much worse this time around.

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