People Like Us Should Be Stopped
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Idaho's People Like Us Should Be Stopped documents early live performances; most were recorded at a date in Tucson during the band's Kick Your Fucking Head In tour of 1993. Select tracks from U.K dates factor in as well, along with a clutch of studio-created "segues" that the band used to defray audience boredom during lengthy tuning breaks. (The band's use of odd tunings and four-string guitars required just as much maintenance as Sonic Youth's guitars did, and Idaho never had the benefit of having 80-plus guitars at their disposal like SY.) The sound quality is varied, but it's certainly listenable throughout. The deeply passionate renderings (most are from Year After Year and the Palms EP) make up for any shortcomings in sound quality, mostly thanks to Jeff Martin's exorcistic vocal performances. And though the Tucson tracks feature loads of venue-derived reverb, it actually complements the material. A slowed down, voice and guitar version of "Creep" (not a cover) is one of the more chilling moments, and a dusky version of "Gone" tops any of Alice in Chains' moodier slow burners (an admittedly odd point of reference). The selected "segues" finish out the disc nicely, sounding like Brian Eno's On Land with more guitar. All told, it's a patchy disc, but definitely necessary for any fan. The self-released album is promisingly subtitled "Volume One," so hopefully some later live dates will be documented, when the band really hit its stride. Detailed liner notes are provided by then-guitarist John Berry. He recollects the random woes that the band went through while touring, like attempted heroin detoxification and being assaulted in the middle of the night by a mentally shaky, metallic pole-wielding band member. Typical stuff. He also advises that the listener "enjoy it like a drunken narcotics run in an unfamiliar city." All righty, then!
~ Andy Kellman
this review is/was online at All Music Guide
and is available here for archival purposes only