Wynn to Cover 2nd Dream Syndicate LP

 

 

Goin’ down to the medicine show one
mo’  time…

 

By Fred
Mills

 

 

Back in
2001, Dream Syndicate founder Steve Wynn pressed his band The Miracle 3 into service
to perform D.S. album The Days of Wine
and Roses
in its entirety as a combined tribute to his old band’s
groundbreaking classic and to mark the release of Rhino’s remastered/expanded
reissue. By all accounts, from both band and fans, the series of shows where Wine was covered was a rousing success.

 

 Now word comes that Wynn and the M3 – Jason
Victor, Dave Decastro and Linda Pitmon – will be doing a pair of shows, one in
NYC and one in L.A., in which they cover the Syndicate’s second album, 1984’s The Medicine Show, to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the LP.

 

As Wynn
& Co. quipped in a press release announcing the events, “Ronald Reagan
makes a run at a second term as president, the Berlin Wall is still intact, Boy
George tops the charts and has yet to spend a day in jail or collecting trash
in lower Manhattan, MTV seems to be a fad that might just stick around, cell
phones and the internet aren’t much more than space-age rumors alongside
jet-packs and time travel.  Most of the more dire predictions in George
Orwell’s book haven’t come true.  Yet. And the Dream Syndicate releases The Medicine Show.”

 

“I
always loved this record and felt it has lived in the shadows of The Days of Wine and Roses,” said Wynn.
“So it will be nice to have a couple of nights to let it stand up on its own
and see how it stands up to a quarter of a century.”

 

While
Medicine Show performed admirably on
the charts, it confused a lot of the critics who expected the band to replicate
the nu-psychedelia of its predecessor. Apparently it fared better overseas,
however; BLURT is advised that it even made the London Guardian‘s
“Top 40 Albums of the First 40 Years of Rock” list in the mid-90s. And not
without cause, either, as it’s long been a fan favorite, particularly around
BLURT manor.

 

It’s different
from the first album, that’s for sure, but harder-edged, tauter in some places
and more sprawling in others, and with a tunesmith’s ear for classic hooks.
From the subtly incendiary anthemism of “Burn” and the jangly vivaciousness of “Tell
Me When It’s Over” to the chooglin’ raveup that’s “John Coltrane Stereo Blues”
and the thumping, thudding thug-rock of “The Medicine Show,” Medicine Show remains one of the era’s
stone classics.

 

“‘Medicine Show is the weirdest, most
idiosyncratic, nastiest, funniest and most revealing record the Dream Syndicate
ever made,” said Wynn in the liner notes from the record’s 1991 reissue. 
“It’s also my favorite.”

 

If anyone
reading this is keeping count here, this makes two classic releases for one band. How many groups can lay a claim
to one, much less two? Of course, anyone reading this who also knows Wynn’s
career also realizes that the hits just keep coming from this ever-prolific
songwriter.

 

 

Be there or be square:

 

 

JUNE
27                    
BELL
HOUSE                        
            BROOKLYN, NY

JULY
9                       
THE
ECHO                                        
LOS ANGELES, CA

 

 

 

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