My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Original Album is tracks 1-7
Brief Background: Suicide is the debut by the band of the same name. It was recorded over four days in 1977 and released in December of that year.
What I think: I first listened to this album (or part of it at least) after hearing the song “Frankie Teardrop” inspired Bruce Springsteen to write “State Trooper” for the album Nebraska. You can hear the influence in the starkness and yelps of the Springsteen song, but “State Trooper” is nowhere near as troubling. “Frankie Teardrop”, a song about a desolate factory worker who kills his family and then himself, may be the most disturbing song I’ve ever heard. The lyrics and story of the song are one thing, but Alan Vega’s deathly schizophrenic screams are another. They are what nightmares are made of…. I don’t think I need to hear it again.
Disturbing and stark is a theme for the whole album, but there are other things to be found here. There is beauty in “Cheree” and also beauty that builds to lust in “Girl”. “Johnny” sounds like it also could have been an influence for Springsteen on Nebraska. Overall, it’s a short album at just over thirty minutes, but it’s exhausting, it feels like a double. And that is an achievement in a way.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? It’s certainly a valuable piece of art. It’s able to emotionally make you go to ten without any cheap tricks. It’s been an influence to a lot of musicians. I think it should be listened to for me probably not again after this.
Rating (Out of 5) 3
Is this my first time hearing this album? No (94 /397)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 76%