Sooner or later, friend, you've got to fall
January 15, 2005 10:39 AM   Subscribe

Do you remember Hüsker Dü? No, not that Husker Du, this one. This site contains one of the most complete collections of guitar tabs I have ever seen for any band. It might even exceed my previous favorite band site,, if not in flash, then in content. The owner of the site seems to be more of a Grant Hart fan than a Bob Mould fan, as there are tabs for most of Hart's solo stuff and for Nova Mob, but only a smattering of Mould tunes and none for Sugar. There is also, suprisingly, a tab of the Posies' excellent song (and loving tribute to the Huskers) "Grant Hart".
posted by psmealey (60 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'm recall the hideous band but I'm lost on your "No, not that Husker Du." Is there a toy so called by Hasbro?
posted by juiceCake at 10:49 AM on January 15, 2005

And when in Bay City, Wisconsin, don't you dare miss Greg Norton's incredible restaurant. Last time we were there, he seated us and smiled upon my boyfriend's beer choices. Most diners have no clue who he is, I think, though they might wonder about the small collection of autographed album covers (Patti Smith's Horses, if I recall correctly) and other stuff on the wall near the impressive wine collection.
posted by kittyb at 10:54 AM on January 15, 2005

Husker Du? Hideous? Your rock point bank is bankrupt.
posted by bunnytricks at 10:55 AM on January 15, 2005

Hüsker Dü rules. *ignites lighter and raises high above head*
posted by alteredcarbon at 10:55 AM on January 15, 2005

I heart Husker Du. They're one of those bands that I didn't enjoy when I first heard them, then a few years passed, I was exposed to their stuff again, and I love it.
posted by drezdn at 10:55 AM on January 15, 2005

Husker Du
posted by psmealey at 10:55 AM on January 15, 2005

I heard a (completely unsubstantiated, probably false) rumor that Greg Norton had finally agreed to a full reunion at this year's Coachella festival. Ummm, kittyb? Any chance you could help put this rumor to rest? Several of my friends are getting very fidgety over it.
posted by cali at 10:57 AM on January 15, 2005

Husker Du was the start of my 'break' from popular music in 1986 at the age of 12. i remember listening to 'Zen Arcade' so loud on my walkman while riding the bus that other kids gave me strange looks because all they could hear was tinny distortion (somehow Greg Norton's superior bass never made it to their ears). i still relate the unfortunate story of Mould's sleeping habit: turning the television up full blast while sleeping in order to escape the ringing of his tinnitus.
posted by NationalKato at 11:00 AM on January 15, 2005

so do you guys see a site? cause all I get is
"Sorry, the site you requested is inactive."
posted by mr.marx at 11:04 AM on January 15, 2005

I have been waiting for this reunion since the last time I saw them in 1987. That was, btw, the loudest and best show I have ever been to in my life... the only way I can describe it was melodic jet wash. But, I didn't think Norton was the roadblock, I had always understood that issues between Grant and Bob were the reason they wouldn't get back together, that and Mould's tinnitus as Nash Kato points out; I don't think he can play electric shows anymore, at least not at the volumes they used play.
posted by psmealey at 11:06 AM on January 15, 2005

psmealey, Grant and Bob seem to have overcome their differences.
posted by cali at 11:11 AM on January 15, 2005

well I giggled at the bilingual pun, as I read "do you remember dö yöu remember"?
posted by dabitch at 11:13 AM on January 15, 2005

There was a Star Tribune interview last summer with Norton where he said something about not even having a working amp anymore. Another story from that same time says a reunion is unlikely. (bugmenot = ihateforced / signinpages - if you get nabbed for registration on those links)

Bob has a blog, and I don't think he's mentioned it there. That'd be something else, though, wouldn't it?
posted by kittyb at 11:19 AM on January 15, 2005

For those of you too young to remember the early 1970s, the game "Husker Du" is notable because the television commercial for the game created controversy over supposedly "subliminal" messages in the ad.
posted by briank at 11:22 AM on January 15, 2005

God, I would kill for a Husker Du reunion (flip my wig, even! Sorry, someone had to)... coincidentally, just yesterday I just caught the video for "Makes So Sense At All" on VH1-Classic (heh) and I've been thinking of them ever since. Not that hearing the theme song to "The Daily Show" every night isn't reminder enough of the greatness that is Bob Mould (& co.).
posted by scody at 11:27 AM on January 15, 2005

Argh... "Makes NO Sense At All"
posted by scody at 11:28 AM on January 15, 2005

Walking down memory lane, I discovered Husker Du for myself as a suburban east coast high schooler in the early 80s as a result of ordering a "Kill Bono" t-shirt (a joke in response to Negativland and SST Records' legal troubles with U2) out of the back pages of either Rolling Stone or Creem. I ended up getting on the SST mailing list, and ordered "Zen Arcade" a few weeks later. This random act changed my life forever... at least in the way that I saw music differently. I felt inspired that if you had passion and desire to play, and could write a good hook/riff/melody you could do it for a living, especially if you didn't care about getting rich doing it. Previously, I had gotten frustrated with the fact that I couldn't play like Van Halen or Yngwie and figured that even getting in a band was out of reach. The Huskers will always be one of my favorite bands, not just for their songs, but a whole lot more than that.
posted by psmealey at 11:34 AM on January 15, 2005

Husker Du? Hideous? Your rock point bank is bankrupt.

Fine. I simply don't care for them but I respect that others do, including you. Afterall, it's quite subjective rather than prescriptive. I prefer the likes of Pavement and GBV and many others. If that's bankruptcy then so be it. I'm not going to file.

briank: Thanks for the info. I was between 1 - 5 in the early 70s and my recollection of those days is a little fuzzy.
posted by juiceCake at 11:36 AM on January 15, 2005

Btw, check out the posters/handbills section linked to from the main site. Some pretty great stuff there.
posted by psmealey at 11:42 AM on January 15, 2005

"Sorry, the site you requested is inactive."

That's what I get to....
posted by fieldofdreams at 12:40 PM on January 15, 2005

the geocities site has been down for months.

i was a junior in high school when copper blue came out. at the time, i had started working at a crappy record store and was reeling from awful boyfriend problems. one of our customers played the trumpet and had amazingly diverse taste in music, and would come in once a week to buy huge stacks of cds. he kept telling me about sugar, and finally bought me a copy of copper blue. in that record i heard a lot of the anger i had towards my life and towards things that happened to me, but i also heard...hope? a light at the end of the tunnel? something. it made me feel like i wasn't completely alone.

[this is good] thanks, psmealey.
posted by pxe2000 at 12:50 PM on January 15, 2005

Hm. I just realized a lot of the content is down, so I apologize for this. I initially looked at Zen Arcade pt 1, Flip Your Wig, New Day Rising and Warehouse pt 1, and they all were working, so I assumed the rest were. So, not quite as impressive as I had been led to believe, but still pretty good nonetheless.
posted by psmealey at 1:00 PM on January 15, 2005

I heard 'celebrated summer' on fmu last week. The opening riff drained all the beer in the fridge, put 60 drunk maniacs in my back yard, made a bonfire of all my 'furniture', and got me fired from my job.

And, bob wrote the daily show theme? Really?
posted by psychoticreaction at 1:26 PM on January 15, 2005

What an awesome band, although I've found that fans can tend to fall into two pretty polar camps--the ones who love the noisy thrash, and disdain the more melodic tunes, and the ones who find their "poppier" stuff an impressive blend of aggression and tunefulness. (I'm squarely in the latter camp, but I'm a bit older, and discovered them after they had actually busted up.)

Warehouse: Songs and Stories is one of the best collections of songs that I still listen to regularly, but Mould's Workbook is one of my favorite albums, period. It just has this great progression: from an almost precious, delicate beginning--the guitar section that opens the album is so pretty that it's regularly used on commercials and trailers--and then it basically just starts falling apart, song by song, till by the end he's literally screaming over chaotic noise. (The songs tend to do the same thing, internally--I just think it's cool, and pretty clearly an expression of his own internal turmoil.)
posted by LairBob at 2:05 PM on January 15, 2005

LairBob, i'm with you regarding Warehouse, as well as Workbook (which is the only solo work i've purchased from Mr. Mould). however, i would suggest taking another listen to some of the 'noisy thrash' bits from Zen Arcade or Land Speed Record and see if you can't find the beauty in those as well. i mean, i really don't see any of their work as 'noise.' and you might be surprised to see some incredibly 'poppy' stuff on those early albums as well.
posted by NationalKato at 2:17 PM on January 15, 2005

HOLY CRAP!!! That Swervedriver link is pure gold. You made my whole month. Thanks a lot.
posted by n9 at 2:31 PM on January 15, 2005

Don't you thing that we should kiss while the Husker Du is playing?
posted by gamera at 2:36 PM on January 15, 2005

Although bob's post-husker musical projects tend to get more exposure, grant's solo records are both really great. 'Intolerance' contains '2541' which is so sad and good that all i'll say about it is that 2541 is the last address of the husker's office. 'Good news for modern man' has a little of everything and is so whimsical and funny that, like the husker's best, it makes me feel good just thinking about listening to it.
posted by psychoticreaction at 2:41 PM on January 15, 2005

gamera that song just made my day. Thanks!

And it just so happened that today, while jamming with my friends' band as a fill-in for their singer's no-show, I taught them "Diane". Just an hour later I see this post. Nice one psmealey!
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 2:45 PM on January 15, 2005

Pixies? Fortunately I remember that they always sucked live.

Slint? hmmm probably better but I think I'll just stay with the intimate perfection of the albums, thanks.

Husker Du? Here, please take my wallet. Roadtrip!

I discovered Husker Du approximately the day they broke up. Doh. Generally I sneer at nostalgia culture, especially this reunion tour crap, but it seems I might be a slight hypocrite. Dude, it's Husker Du.
posted by intermod at 3:03 PM on January 15, 2005

intermod, i never got a chance to see the Pixies during their first go-round (they cancelled a show at my college before breaking up), but their reunion tour performance here in Atlanta was phenomenal. no suckage at all.
posted by NationalKato at 3:42 PM on January 15, 2005

NK...sorry, didn't mean to imply that the other albums were just "noise", in a bad way. I think it's more that, by the time I discovered them myself, I had really moved past the stage in my life that thrived on the whole DKs/Bad Brains/Black Flag kinda vibe.

Like I said, I think that "noise" can be totally artful, like I think it is in Workbook, but I've still got Zen Arcade in my CD library, from when I was looking to expand my HD collection. I threw it in the CD player a little while ago, by coincidence, and I still just don't find it anywhere near as compelling as Warehouse or Workbook. (Maybe it needed to start with a "W"...)
posted by LairBob at 3:51 PM on January 15, 2005

Out of all the Our Band Could be Your Life bands, Husker Du and The Replacements were the only acts that I could never really got into. I really can't explain why without writing several paragraphs, so I'll just say it was always fun to start drunken arguments with my music geek friends in college by claiming that Babes in Toyland was the best group to come out of Minneapolis.

posted by henryultrajames at 7:02 PM on January 15, 2005

Nevertheless, good post.
posted by henryultrajames at 7:10 PM on January 15, 2005

Like a few other posters, I discovered HD long after they had broken up. I stumbled across the opening chords of New Day Rising playing in the record room of the campus library, and was literally hooked from that moment. It was like an alcoholic's first drink. The blend of aggression and melody seemed just 'right'. I've seen Bob play solo a few times now and although it's been good, it's just not the same. So long as the reunion tour comes to Oz (if such a thing every happens), I'm in!

Re Husker Du tab: what makes a lot of this music astonishing is that what you hear on the rekkid was recorded first take, with no overdubs. Bob Mould's simultaneous use of drone notes and little solo fills makes it sound like at least 2 regular guitarists. Although to my wife, the same phenomenon just sounds like noise. Oh well. I love her for other reasons.
posted by tim_in_oz at 7:43 PM on January 15, 2005

I've never heard any Husker Du - but I loved Sugar's Copper Blue as a kid - this post has jogged memory enough to check them out - thanks!
posted by Jon Mitchell at 7:50 PM on January 15, 2005

Husker Du fukin' rocked. In the early 80's that is. An intelligent thrash band, to coin an oxymoron.

Napster'd a version of the Mary Tyler Moore theme by them a couple years ago. Wierd.
posted by telstar at 8:06 PM on January 15, 2005

on preview, telstar, the mary tyler moore theme is so right on...most cherished 45rpm evah.

And for all fellow fans, you heard that Bob came out of the closet about ten years ago, right? Not that there's anything wrong with that, but I myself was surprised, tender lyricism notwithstanding. I always used to wonder what happened to Norton, what with Mould and Grant being busy right from the break up. My best friend Steev said "all three couldn't be musical geniuses," and he implied, or I inferred from his screed, that Greg was the gay one, but hey, we all get older and wiser. Regardless, Hü Dü still way the best band ever, even now when the kids are asleep and I'm drunk on tequila. I'm taking my sorry ass out to the barn to find the LPs.
*weaves towards back door, hums tune to everything falls apart*
posted by Pliskie at 8:17 PM on January 15, 2005

btw, your 8:17pm pst is my 11:17pm est. Kids were asleep before the margaritas arrived. Don't bother DYS at this hour, they're drinking too.
*moshes lamely, as saintly, understanding wife looks on, shakes head*

posted by Pliskie at 8:26 PM on January 15, 2005

I (HEART) Husker Du. And yes, its ok that "Brasilia is Crossed with Trenton"
posted by R. Mutt at 8:50 PM on January 15, 2005

Best song ever? Possibly "Divide and Conquer" off of Flip Your Wig.

Not so great a song, but cool in light of this excellent post, the Mats "Something to Do."

All good bands should have umlauts in their name, AFAIAC.

/"Something to Husker!!!"
posted by bardic at 10:28 PM on January 15, 2005

In retrospect, this really was a shameless fanb0y post, but I do thank you all for sharing your Hüsker Dü memories with me. Personally, even as I approach my forties they are still the one and only band that means something more to me than just a nostalgic look back, they actually added something to this whole experience we call life.

Maybe if Grant, Greg and Bob consent to do a reunion show, I can get away with another FPP. Until then, see you on other threads, but in the meantime we can remember (juiceCake notwithstanding) that we all got along waxing nostalgic on Husker Du on a Saturday Night on MeFi when nothing else was going on.
posted by psmealey at 10:28 PM on January 15, 2005

the only solo work i've purchased from Mr. Mould

Black Sheets of Rain saved my life.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:35 PM on January 15, 2005

In late October, Bob signed on to do the Rock for Karl benefit at the Quest here in Minneapolis (Karl Mueller, from the band Soul Asylum, has throat cancer). Bob was amazing, and at the end of his set, was joined by Mr. Grant Hart. It was the first time they had shared a stage in nearly 20 years. They did "Never Talking to You Again," and a few other songs that I can't seem to remember at the moment. Anyway, from the the looks Grant was giving Mould, and from their body language on stage, it would be MOST surprising if they reunited. There doesn't seem to be a lot of love between Grant and Mould, or at least that's what it looked like from the audience.
posted by jodic at 12:19 AM on January 16, 2005

Not so great a song, but cool in light of this excellent post, the Mats "Something to Do."

here's my super nerdy fangirl coming to the surface, it's actually called "Something to Du." God, I love Paul Westerberg.
posted by jodic at 12:25 AM on January 16, 2005

Stavros, i'll check Black Sheets out. who knows? perhaps it'll save mine as well...
posted by NationalKato at 12:58 AM on January 16, 2005

Great post.

Husker Du really changed my life growing up in Little Rock. Bought Flip yr Wig when I was 16 in 1986.

I'd never heard anything so beautiful and realized a lifelong love of noise, especially when it was combined with an excellent pop sensibility.

I might be in the minority, but for some reason I thought Grant's songs were better than Bob's and I liked Grant's solo work better. Still, in a pinch, it would be hard to pick between the two.

(nice to see swervedriver mentioned too...thats a band I'll probably never be tired of...)
posted by pandaharma at 4:10 AM on January 16, 2005

When I was a kid listening to "Standing in the Rain" off Warehouse:S&S, there was one line ("Everywhere I look I'm finding you..."). We knew what was going to follow and would all stop and yell at the stereo --

"Do your Slim Whitman imitation, Bob!"

"Yeah, man, do it!"

And Bob Mould would always oblige with

"I remember yooooUUUUUuu..."

God bless that man. *Wipes tear*
posted by luminol at 6:46 AM on January 16, 2005

Actually, that song was "Back From Somewhere". Old age is hell on the memory.
posted by luminol at 6:48 AM on January 16, 2005

When I saw Swervedriver the club had them listed out front as:

posted by kongg at 10:20 AM on January 16, 2005

An ex- once thought I was completely insane when I claimed that "zen arcade" my favorite restful album to fall to sleep to.
posted by milovoo at 1:46 PM on January 16, 2005

Luminol - Grant sang 'Back from somewhere' ;)
posted by voon_42 at 2:17 PM on January 16, 2005

/lowers eye, removes John Deere hat due to jodic.
posted by bardic at 3:36 PM on January 16, 2005

Always thought it interesting the both Mould and Hart were gay. Didn't some magazine out Mould?
posted by bardic at 3:47 PM on January 16, 2005

well, Hart had that handlebar moustache...
posted by NationalKato at 5:27 PM on January 16, 2005

Nash, that was Greg Norton. He still does have it, btw, and he's straight.
posted by psmealey at 7:06 PM on January 16, 2005

... not that there's anything wrong with that.
posted by psmealey at 8:11 PM on January 16, 2005

Luminol - Grant sang 'Back from somewhere' ;)

That's wild. Listening to songs from Copper Blue, (or the rest of Warehouse, for that matter) you'da never convinced me.

Now my whole perception of reality is called into question. Every time I listen, I'll think, Is it Bob or Grant...or even Greg??

*assumes the fetal position, mumbles lyrics to "Something I Learned Today"*
posted by luminol at 6:07 AM on January 17, 2005

This is a great thread. I discovered Husker Du in the late 80's in high school. At the time, I was even lucky enough to see them at the Syria Mosque Ballroom in Pittsburgh. At the time, it was just another show, but years later, I look back and am quite thankful my mom let me go!

I also got to see "Sugar" play in a really tiny club in Morgantown WV on a mini-tour they were doing before the "Copper Blue" album came out. It was one of the loudest shows I ever seen. In fact, Husker Du was sort of the same. Very, very loud band live.

I saw that someone mentioned Bob Mould's blog earlier, but I got another bit of good trivia for you all too:

Bob Mould is a huge professional wrestling plan. In fact, for more than a year, he was one of the "writers/bookers" on WCW wrestling on TNT.
posted by punkrockrat at 3:43 PM on January 17, 2005


back in 1994, when they were doing press for "File Under: Easy Listening," Dennis Cooper was writing a piece for Spin magazine. Apparently he stayed w/ Bob for days, there was tons of material...and then when it was published, it was a relatively sensationalistic piece about Bob coming out, or at least no longer ignoring the question..

According to some reviews that came over the sugar-list, Bob just played at the Paradise in Boston and it was an amazing show. He played a bunch of new songs, which someone said were a return to form after a relatively disappointing "Modulate"
posted by chacal at 3:08 PM on January 18, 2005

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