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We Will Fall: The Iggy Pop Tribute

By Matt Ashare

OCTOBER 13, 1997:  Exploiting the bad-ass protopunk legend of Iggy Pop for a good cause -- the music industry's LIFEbeat AIDS relief charity, which gets a portion of the disc's proceeds -- brings all kind of wanna-be punk Samaritans out of the closet. MTV news dude Kurt Loder lends context to the covers with his brief liner notes concerning our current need for "a stiff shot of Iggy Pop." And the Red Hot Chili Peppers respond with a cheap shot of teeth-baring thrash ("Search and Destroy") recorded back when John Frusciante was in the band and Rick Rubin was in the producer's chair.

Misses include NY Loose's woefully unswinging plow through "Lust for Life" and a cold and clueless reading by Sugar Ray of "Cold Metal," which features some annoying turntable scratching. From the other side of the tracks, card-carrying punk Joey Ramone steps in to set the right tone with the disc's opener, an acid-metal flashback take on the Stooges' classic "1969" that's powered by the flexing rhythm section of Misfits Jerry Only and Dr. Chud. The Misfits, with new singer Michale Graves, kick the shit out of "I Got a Right"; Blondie reunite as Adolph's Dog to give a new-wave sheen to "Ordinary Bummer"; and Monster Magnet break out the acoustic guitar for a surprisingly soulful "Gimme Danger." Really, though, what Iggy needs more than a tribute disc is another Trainspotting soundtrack.

-- Matt Ashare

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