Columbia 82876831652: 5th June 2006
1. Country Girl
"Never get too big, never get too heavy, never get too cool, that you stop payin' your dues"
2. Nitty Gritty
"City Streets, full of creeps, I'm knee deep in scum, I feel like Christ on the cross, with a loaded gun"
3. Suicide Sally & Johnny Guitar
"She got her wings, givin' head to a priest, that fucker choked on his rosary beads"
4. When The Bomb Drops
"Once you were, a thief of fire, now you're just a junkie liar, what you gonna cop, when the bomb drops?"
5. Little Death
"Make me dance, make me sing, buy you a death's head, diamond ring"
6. The 99th Floor
"Birds in the sky, dogs on the ground, rats in the garbage, but my baby can't be found"
7. We're Gonna Boogie
"The atomic bomb, the golden dawn, you're the one I want"
8. Dolls (Sweet Rock & Roll)
"I searched all over town, quizzed the dudes hanging around, no one had ever seen a chick like you before"
9. Hell's Comin' Down
"Made love in the morning, we got drunk at night, when she was a-sleepin', I stabbed her with a knife"
10. Sometimes I Feel So Lonely
"You can be redeemed, boys, you can be redeemed, life is but a dream, boys"
'Riot City Blues' is a return to the Rolling Stones influences that we all know Primal Scream have been shying away from for the last decade. It positively revels in ludicrous Rock clichés like, midnight trains, leather boots, guns, junk, Jesus, the Devil, murder and salvation. Loads of the lyrics are just plain stupid if you think about them, but deep down in your gut they feel so right. I've quoted some lines above, but the best has to be "I feel like Christ on the cross, with a loaded gun".
The chorus "We're gonna get right down to the real nitty gritty" sums the album up, there are no new boundaries being pushed here, it's just the filthiest Rock 'n' Roll album since 'Appetite For Destruction' (With none of the whiney vocals). It uses every trick in the book, Guitar solos, "Na-na-nas", handclaps and even a Patti Smith style interlude. This interlude is performed by VV from The Kills, who provides extra vocals on many tracks (She's credited here by her real name, Alison Mosshart). 'Riot City Blues' shares one thing with their 1991 masterpiece 'Screamadelica'. Broadly speaking, that album had a loose structure that started with Rock/Dance, progressing into Psychedelia and then finally the comedown, and 'Riot City Blues' follows a similar path.
'Country Girl' was their biggest hit to date but that's not the only track here. There is the Rolling Stones sleaze of 'Nitty Gritty', the Psychedelic Doors like 'Little Death', the Soledad Brothers stomp of 'The 99th Floor', the T. Rex like 'We're Gonna Boogie' and the beautiful Gospel-Country closer 'Sometimes I Feel So Lonely'. But the best track has got to be 'Dolls'. I loved it right from the first listen, it's surely going to be another smash hit for them. They've managed to create a song that's fuelled by Dance at the core, but never straying from pure Rock on the surface. Dance floors across the country will be echoing with shouts of the fist waving chorus, "Let's have a good time".
I remember watching Colin Murray's infamous interview with Primal Scream at the last Glastonbury Festival. On the same night he described them as "The Greatest Rock 'n' Roll band on the planet". Having been less than impressed with their 'Evil Heat' album, I just put that statement down to Colin Murray being a proper twat. But after I've had this album on an almost constant loop for the last week, I whole-heartedly agree. I can't remember an album that was just… so much fun!
Go to the Primal Scream Website to use its amazing video player. I worship at the feet of whoever designed the thing. You just type in the name of any Primal Scream single and it plays you the video (Including the brilliant new one for 'Dolls').