My brother and I were talking about music as usual, when he asked me my opinion of the Replacements. When I selfishly and embarrassingly admitted that I had never listened to them, you would have thought I just told my brother that someone died, as through text messaging I somehow could still see him holding back tears. “YOU NEED TO LISTEN TO THE CLASSICS BRAD YOU’RE NOT MY REAL BROTHER IF YOU DON’T” is something along the lines of what he said to me even after I said on about fifteen times that I would listen to it that night.
So after I downloaded the album through a method of whatever the opposite of legal is, I started the album as flashbacks of my brother yelling at me to listen to the album arose in my mind. I did recognize some of the songs though from my brother playing it, but when we were a bit younger Jeff would rather yell about how good the next song is going to be rather then letting me listen to it. I knew I was going to have to like the album no matter what, because something my brother and I have in common is our strict “no one is allowed to have different opinions then us without us getting frustrated” rule.
The album, “Let It Be” without my brother’s voice over it was a great album by itself however. However because of the title I could have easily been listening to the Beatles last album and not of known it. It’s a definitive rock classic and arguably one of the most influential albums for modern rock bands like The Strokes and the Arctic Monkeys. Guitar driven rock albums have the risk of being one dimensional style wise, however while the album has a consistent lyrical tone of the awkwardness of growing up, it delves into many different styles of rock, varying from power chord driven hardcore punk, to piano driven melodies. It’s influence continues to be easily seen throughout music and you can see why listening to it. Lyrically the Replacements delve into topics of growing up while contrasting the sweet, often awkward lyrical tone of the album with a mix of harsh but usually very melodic guitar patterns.
The album opener, “I Will Dare” shows a hopeful young man ready to conquer the world yet still facing the awkwardness of a new relationship with “meet me anyplace or anywhere or anytime” while the album closer “Answering Machine” shows this young man wondering where everything went wrong, begging for the attention that he thought he was going to get. “How do I say I love you, to an answering machine” as the album fuzzes out with an odd vocal sample of an answering machine, as the Replacements leave us with the uncertainty that controlled the whole album. This album rocks though and is a definitive rock classic that any fan of anytime of rock music should check out if they want me to like them.