Thursday, 10 January 2008



Veruca Salt came along when the grunge era was on its knees.  Britpop was now bedding in and knocking aside most things American.  And now all of us appreciated it, clinging onto what few threads remained of the great music of our youths from only a few years earlier.  As a result bands like Veruca Salt actually briefly represented some kind of hope for a certain type of music fan.  It was a false dawn.

I think the intention of Veruca Salt was to cash in on Riot Grrrl and use the alternative nation of the mid nineties.  With hindsight it feels like an effort targeted at a remaining gap in the market.  Ultimately I doubt things were that cynical but the band does not sit well in the history of indie rock.

Rather than sounding like Hole or L7, the results were more akin to a mix of The Breeders and Juliana Hatfield, which in many ways remains preferable.

As I dig out my copy of this single it is caked in dust which is a pretty decent metaphor for the sound held within.

“Seether” feels very much of its time.  Its not that it hasn’t aged well, it just sounds somewhat naïve and eager to please when placed against so much cynicism both past and present, which is in strange contrast considering this is a band many would have considered to be chasing the money having not yet earned their stripes.  They really did not help their case with the opening “meow”.  Later it does house a fine hook but by now most of the audience has been lost.

The second track “Straight” does move in a Hole-esqe direction both musically and in sentiment and succeeds where perhaps the lead song does not.  And finally the flighty “She’s A Brain” closes proceedings in a somewhat more optimistic than welcome manner.  They just weren’t convincing.  A Winger of grunge.

That said I can appreciate a band that squeezes three tracks into just over eight minutes.

Thesaurus moment: contrived.

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