Grant Hart – The Argument
It opens with a squealing loop, tribal percussion and spoken word dramatics. A fat twenty tracks later it exits with an extended coda fashioned from little more than static and feedback. A generation ago, when Hart was still punching the clock as drummer with Hüsker Dü, he dismissed concern amongst long term fans that major label success had turned the Minneapolis hardcore trio into mainstream unit shifters. A song was a song.
And here he is with his fourth studio album, a lengthy concept piece inspired by Milton’s Paradise Lost, no less, and commercial concerns can go hang. The Argument is ambitious, disorientating and unexpectedly engaging. Its inspiration might be overly lofty but it ensures focus. Like many of his fellow alt. rock pioneers (J Mascis, Thurston Moore, ex band-mate Bob Mould) who now find artful exploration as fulfilling as the fires of youth, Hart’s endeavours justify your continued investment.