Reissued and remastered for its 20th birthday, comes Black Love - 20th Anniversary Edition by Ohio-based The Afghan Whigs. Initially released in the spring of 1996, this two-disc offering amounted to the band's fifth studio album - one that propelled the garage-rock stars forward. Includes a whopping 9 previously unreleased recordings - essentials for fans.
2 reviews. Add your own review.
10/10 Chris Lockie Customer review, 22nd November 2016
I've never not had this album with me on whatever tape/record/CD/mp3 player I'm carting about with my carcass. I don't claim to be anything other than a very fucked up man.
It came out about three weeks after I was kicked out of university for all manner of egregious offences but I still know what the word egregious means - fuck you Reading - and that can only be down to the work of people like Greg Dulli at exactly the right moment. It's one nasty bastard of an album, best listened to with great suspicion of the motives of anyone involved, dripping with...well, fluids, frankly, of dubious provenance.
Obviously I don't have the 20th anniversary version because its very existence proves I'm too fucking old for all this, so I don't know who 'Wynton Kelly' is or what he's jamming about. But if you don't own this album in some form or another, there's not enough wrong with you. There's a whole world of horrors out there waiting for you, under bridges and through doors bathed in red light, where Black Love exists.
10/10 The Doc Customer review, 19th October 2016
Greg Dulli has been knocking out his own inimitable brand of dark rock 'n' soul, packed with songs about car crashes, coke, sex, death and violence for such a long time it's easy to forget how fresh and dangerous all that stuff once sounded, but here's where it all began. After a few shaky - albeit promising - albums and early EPs it seemed like his song-writing had hit a peak with the claustrophobic squall of Gentlemen, but here he ups it yet another gear and this is without doubt his masterpiece. Opening track Crime Scene Part 1 may well be the best song he ever wrote and sets the tone perfectly, building from the shimmering drones and hushed opening incantation "Tonight tonight I say goodbye to everyone who loves me/stick it to my enemies tonight....." to the blistering crescendo with its swaggering brag "If you knew just how smooth I could stop it on a dime/you could meet me at the scene of the crime....."
Many of his other best songs are contained herein; My Enemy is a towering revenge fantasy ("They say I called the brother/to fall in love with you"), Going To Town crashes along similar lines but with added Mafia ties to boot ("When you say now we've got hell to pay/don't worry baby that's okay/I know the boss....."), Honky's Ladder with Rick McCollum's screeching guitar intro and it's belting refrain of "Got you where I want you, motherfucker" and the epic finale of Faded - a stunning attempt, by his own admission to reinterpret Purple Rain - which is perhaps the finest closing track to an album ever. He's got a cokehead swagger throughout this that can't be touched - he sounds cool as fuck, and doesn't he just know it? You know deep down that all this stuff is fantasy.....but is it? You're never quite sure. He's an amazing songwriter and an absolutely brilliant live performer, even if these days he looks more like a snooker player than the all-night drug-prowling wolf who looks so sick in the sun; this record is the complete realisation of Dulli's singular vision, and one one of the finest albums of the 1990s, if not all time. I think the only other album I've ever given a 10/10 rating to on here is Disintegration by the Cure, so this really is in lofty company for me. If you've never heard this before, you should buy a copy immediately.
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- Black Love - 20th Anniversary Edition by The Afghan Whigs
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