Album no. 200/1001
“Though initially commercially unsuccessful, Fun House developed a strong cult following.” YOU DON’T SAY MATE.
Fun fact, Jac Holzman (the record executive who signed the Stooges) hand-picked a guy called Don Gallucci to produce this album. Gallucci went and saw them live, then came back and said he thought they were ‘interesting’ but he didn’t see how you could get their sound on tape. Holzman said bad luck mate, I’ve already paid for the studio time.
From these humble beginnings came the album we have today.
Have you listened to this album before?
NK: I have, but I’ve definitely listened to their debut more.
CL: Only about A HUNDRED TIMES! This is absolutely one of my favourite albums, so I’ll probably come into this with just a touch of bias. I’m totally kidding, I’m able to be objective. ALSO KIDDING. There’s no way I can do that. Spoiler: it’s great.
NK: I pretty much liked all of them, but if I was forced to pick one I think it would be ‘Loose’. I like the way it feels like it’s going a million miles an hour even though it’s quite a reasonable pace. Also the chorus has Iggy singing quite delicately before suddenly snapping back with ‘CAUSE I’M LOOSE’ with his regular sneer. It’s great. I also quite like ‘1970’, the title track and ‘TV Eye’. Hard to go wrong on this album really.
CL: LITERALLY ALL OF THEM. I will list them in order of my preference. And there’s only 7 songs so it’s fine.
- TV Eye
- Down On The Street
- Fun House
- LA Blues
Every song is a stone-cold banger – ‘Down On The Street’ is one of the best SIDE ONE TRACK ONES of all time. But ‘TV Eye’ is easily my favourite. Old mate Iggy squawking and hollering – I love the cough mid-track. The pounding bass is what stands out to me – the production is outstanding. It sounds like it’s been recorded in an enormous, cavernous space. It’d have to be to capture their thunderous sound.
When would be the best time to listen to this?
NK: When this came out a reviewer questioned whether it was healthy for him as he needed to be in a mood of ‘desperate abandon’ before he could get on with them musically. I’d say that’s about right.
CL: When you are feeling absolutely unhinged and need something to clear out the cobwebs in your brain. Listen to this unashamedly loud.
Why has this album been included on the list?
NK: This is very proto-punk, still a lot more length and looseness than punk came to be known for, but the insane attack and wild vocals definitely left a mark. He was definitely putting his heart and soul into it as a singer, that’s for sure.
CL: We’ve already heard from The Stooges once on this list, but we most certainly have not heard Iggy sound quite this deranged and crazed. The sounds that come out of that man are guttural, raw and not quite human – BUT I LOVE IT. I think this is the start of really putting your guts into music – anger, frustration, boredom, dissatisfaction – it doesn’t have to be pretty to be bloody amazing.
Will you be listening again?
NK: Yeah I reckon so.
CL: YAAAAAAAAS OF COURSE I WILL.
Unfortunately you can’t listen to Fun House on Spotify (unless you want to hear the entire recording session) so buy it in iTunes.