The last release from Iggy Pop has a particular meaning while 2016 has seen the death of some gods of rock: David Bowie (when will we get out of the grief?), Glenn Frey, Keith Emerson, Lemmy. Rock is dead and its gods are disappearing day by day. In this ‘silly’ situation we look for the survivors, worried for them.
So a new release from Iggy Pop is a sign of life. “I’m here, guys, to play again”. Great. But after all, are we talking about a piece of rock history or is there something new to say? Iggy chooses to express himself facing the fact that time passes by and his propulsive energy has expired. The iguana doesn’t exist anymore, what remains is a Post Pop Depression. What sense do I give to my life today? What remains of the past? What are my feelings as a survivor? “I’ve nothing but my name”, Iggy sings.
The idea is great and the lyrics are rude enough to express the disease of depression, while from the musical point of view the album is far from what producer Josh Homme (the mind of Queens Of The Stone Age and Eagles Of Death Metal) and Iggy affirmed: to go where none of them had arrived before. They met in a halfway point, between desert rock and punk-blues, with many references to Bowie’s aesthetic. The fact is that Homme is a conservative rocker, so he proposes no attempt to explore what happens in rock today.
Nevertheless, the album is good and some songs are great: “Break Into Your Heart” opens brilliantly with its slow black mood, “Gardenia” is a dreamy pop song easy to love, “American Valhalla” shows an interesting China-Girl-attitude, “Sunday” is a good dancy “Rolling Stones song” ending with a rainbow of violins, “Chocolate Drops” is an irresistible west coast song. Furthermore, Iggy’s voice is so hypnotizing that the album flows with pleasure, but what if the album was produced by Animal Collective or Scott Matthew? Another story.
Josh Homme is the real survivor, Iggy is alive and fights to give sense to his present and to prepare the future. So listen to Post Pop Depression and thank God of Rock for Iggy.