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Published: 2012/11/07
by Ron Hart

Bob Mould
Silver Age

Merge

It is generally the hope that when an artist revisits a particular noteworthy area of his or her back catalog that the influence of the project will rub off on any new material that may come about in the near future.

Well, as luck would have it, this is exactly what transpired in the case of Bob Mould for his debut release on the Merge Records label. Bob is at his best in the trio format. And that A-game mentality is exactly what he brings to the table on Silver Age, his 10th proper solo LP and quite arguably the best one he’s put out since Black Sheets of Rain.

With support from Superchunk drummer Jon Wurster and Verbow bassist Jason Narducy, these ten new tracks sear with the infectious urgency of Sugar’s recently reissued 1992 debut masterpiece Copper Blue and its more ravenous EP follow-up Beaster, whose influence is clearly at the root of such impact cuts as “The Descent” and “Angels Rearrange”. Mould also credits the three years he spent writing his must-read autobiography See A Little Light: The Trail of Rage and Melody to the reactionary simplicity of Age, but perhaps more telling from the likes of “Fugue State” and “Round the City Square”, sitting in with the Foo Fighters on their own comeback classic Wasting Light got the juices flowing through the amps just the same.

2005’s Body of Song might have been largely hailed as Mould’s return to the rock format after dabbling in dance music and pro wrestling script writing for a weird spell in the late 90s/early 2000s. But Silver Age is far more definitive in its ambitions to remind people of the underground icon’s indelible role in shaping the state of modern day post-hardcore, even though he is more AARP than SST.

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