Iggy Pop : Beat ‘Em Up

Iggy Pop : Beat 'Em Up


Oi grandad - no!

Now this might be extremely Freudian but the ‘o’ and ‘p’ at the end of Pop, as scrawled by the Iggster himself on the cover of his tenth solo album, look like a saggy, limp, stinking old man’s cock. Fittingly, that’s exactly what the record sounds like.

After the introspective ‘Avenue B’ in 1999, ‘Beat ‘Em Up’ is an attempt at capturing the Iggy Pop live experience on record, and it works. Iggy sounds knackered throughout, seems to have got his backing band from Muddy Sabbaff Powerchords R Us and comes across as a fairly ludicrous old guffer. There he goes, poor befuddled fool, barking like a dog on ‘Howl’, which could have been recorded in any geriatric ward in the country. You can almost hear him fiddling with himself on ‘Jerk’ as he tries to convince some skinny young lovely that he looks better in the mornings. Ah, and he’s still the incisive social philosophiser, preaching that we all, like, hide behind masks on ‘Mask’ and awaking us to the fact, without a flinch, that ‘Death Is Certain’. Woah, no shit Aristotle.

He’s been the father of punk, the grandfather of grunge and now he’s having a go at being the great-grandaddy of nu-metal. And it’s as embarrassing as your granny pissing herself at a wedding while dancing to Oxide & Neutrino. The lust for life is still in evidence, he just can’t get it up on the relevance front any more.

Mark Beaumont