Like the other 7.8 billion or so humans on Earth, Bob Mould is frustrated about the ongoing pandemic and is anxious for life to return to normal.
But the former frontman of ’80s Minneapolis post-punk pioneers Husker Du and veteran alt-rock solo artist has other things on his mind, too, like more than a passing concern about the ongoing clashes in the U.S. over race, gender, and politics.
“I did not anticipate at 59 years of age that I would have to be yelling at the top of my lungs again, but this is the world that we live in,” Mould admits. “With coronavirus, nobody could have predicted that our government would handle it so poorly, on top of all the other corruption, lies, racism, and everything else.”
Mould’s frustration and outpouring of angst turned outrage led him to do what he does best: head into the studio. His 14th solo effort, Blue Hearts, dropped a few weeks ago. This time, he’s taking the troubled state of our society more personally.
Blue Hearts is in every way a Bob Mould record; 13 of the 14 cuts clock in under a punk rock-like three minutes. But though the album has that brash feel, it also contains a surprisingly balanced array of styles and themes. The opening trio of cuts, “Next Generation,” “American Crisis,” and “Fireball,” are incendiary tracks. The muscular and meandering “Forecast of Rain” takes a hard look at the hypocrisy of self-righteous and bigoted religious leaders. “Siberian Butterfly” is a classic