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Iggy And The Stooges - From K.O. To Chaos (Skydog Records/MVD) CD/DVD Review

    Ian Jane

  • Iggy And The Stooges - From K.O. To Chaos (Skydog Records/MVD) CD/DVD Review

    Released by: Skydog Records/MVD
    Released on: December 18th, 2020.
    Year: Various
    Purchase From Amazon

    Iggy And The Stooges - From K.O. To Chaos Review:

    This eight disc boxed set, made up of seven CDs and one DVD, gathers together all of the Iggy And The Stooges releases that have been released over the years from France's Skydog Records, including the infamous Metallic KO album from 1976 and the two complete shows that that album was culled from, in addition to a nice selection of rarities, live tracks and assorted bits and pieces from throughout the Iggy Pop and The Stooges' long and sordid career.

    Here's a look at what you'll find on each of the discs in the collection.

    When the riotous, confrontational 'last ever' Iggy & the Stooges gig Metallic KO was issued in 1976 on the French indie Skydog label, it heralded the punk movement and cemented Iggy's position in it. Iggy's career then took off, and a lengthy liaison between Skydog and Iggy Pop continued, with releases through and beyond the Stooges reunion 29 years later.

    Here are all of the Skydog label's Iggy releases, remastered, in a clam-shell box set containing seven CDs and a DVD - a fitting tribute to the label's punk pioneer boss Marc Zermati, who passed away in June. Marc started Skydog in 1973, arguably Europe's first independent rock label, and in the same year that Metallic KO was released he organised the 'First Punk Festival' in Mont de Marsan.

    The box includes the two Metallic KO source tapes pitch-corrected, collections of rare songs, acoustic shows on DVD, a studio acoustic CD and the Stooges 2003 live reunion. Includes a 48-page booklet with notes by Paul Trynka, the Iggy Pop 'Open Up and Bleed' biographer and former Mojo editor, and rare and unseen photos.

    The complete track listing for the collection is:

    Disc One: Metallic KO:

    Raw Power / Head On / Gimme Danger / Rich Bitch / Cock In My Pocket / Iggy Talks / Louie Louie

    This is a remastered version of the original release from 1976, the one that was made up of two separate shows from Michigan Palace, the first from October 6th, 1973 and the second from February 9th, 1974. It's a recording that's been in print and readily available on various formats for years, and it's a fascinating document of a band, always troubled, just getting into it. You can literally hear things flying across the venue here, as there were gang members in attendance who weren't' at all cool with the band's performance, throwing all sorts of things at them. Iggy is very confrontational here, egging on the crowd and just genuinely not giving a fuck.

    Disc Two: Metallic KO:

    Raw Power / Head On / Gimme Danger / Search And Destroy / Heavy Liquid / Open Up And Blood

    This is the complete show from October 6th, 1973. As such, the first three tracks will sound familiar after you listen to the first disc, but the other three tracks are exclusive to this recording and they're just as good as anything on that first disc.

    Disc Three - Metallic KO:

    Heavy Liquid / I Got Nothin' / Rich Bitch / Gimme Danger / Cock in My Pocket / Louie Louie

    This is the complete show from February 9th, 1974 and, again, four of the tracks here are on disc one but the first two are not and, again, feature the band in fine form. This show is historically important as it was the final full show that the band performed before reuniting years later. Iggy's rants here are bizarre but enthralling.

    Disc Four - We Are Not Talking About Commercial Shit!:

    The Winter of My Discontent / Batman Theme / Louie Louie / Hang On Sloopy / No Fun / Waiting for My Man / 96 Tears / I'm Crying / I'm Alright / One for My Baby / Hassles / Puppet World / Flesh And Blood / Family Affair / You Really Got Me / I Wanna Be Your Dog (acoustic, Barcelona '93 from the Sputnik TV show) / I Wanna Be Your Dog (San Diego, November 1st, 1977) / I Wanna Be Your Dog (Switzerland, July 15th 2000)

    Titled after Iggy's opening blast from the firs track, this disc is a collection of rarities from Iggy's years with Arista Records that was originally released by Skydog in 1995. This material is interesting as most of it predates his getting together with Bowie and finding a fair bit of success in the mainstream. As such, his sound hasn't softened yet, at least not as much as it would, and there's some great material here including some unexpected covers like the Batman Theme, Hang On Sloopy, Waiting For My Man, 96 Tears and more. There are also some interesting Stooges tracks represented here as well

    Disc Five - Wake Up Suckers!:

    I Got a Right (studio, London 1972) / Gimme Some Skin (studio, London 1972) / Gimme Danger (live in Detroit, 1974) / Heavy Liquid (live in Detroit, 1974) / I Got Nothing (live in Detroit, 1974) / Rock Action (live in San Diego, 1977)/ Modern Guy (live in San Diego, 1977) / Run Like a Villain (live in London, 1982) / Eat or Be Eaten (live in London, 1982) / Sixteen (live in London, 1982) / Woman Dream (studio, Los Angeles, 1985) / Love Bone (live, Switzerland, 1991) / Fire Engine (Synchro Sound Studio, 1983) / Warrior Tribe (Synchro Sound Studio, 1983) / Mule Skinner (Synchro Sound Studio, 1983)

    Originally released in 1995, this compilation collects various rarities, live tracks and outtakes from throughout Iggy's career up to the early 1990s. The three studio tracks from 1972 are really solid, but were reportedly 'binned' by then Stooges manager Tony Defries. Tracks from the 'dead horse' tour are included and, as the liner notes state, it's interesting to hear 'how the sound was evolving even as the band was falling apart.' It's an eclectic mix, related only by Iggy's involvement on every track, but there's some really interesting stuff here for the fans to dig into.

    Disc Six - Acoustics KO DVD:

    Barcelona Acoustic Show (Sputnik TV Show 1993):

    Mixing The Colour / Louie Louie / I Wanna Be Your Dog / Pablo Picasso / Loose / Gloria / Social Life / Highway Song / Beside You

    This is an interesting acoustic show recorded around the time of American Caesar's release, just Iggy playing solo and handling guitar duties as well as vocals. He starts with four strings on his guitar and ends with two but manages to work through a pretty fun set list, seemingly improving a bit on Pablo Picasso and Gloria both.

    Paris Electrifying Show (Megastore 12/9/1990/):

    Intro / Down On The Street / I Won't Crap Out / Loose / I Wanna Be Your Dog / Brick By Brick / Butt Town / 1969

    This one is a bit more like what you'd expect from Iggy. Centered on a small stage in a crowded room, he spends a few seconds tweaking his guitar sound and then promptly removes his shirt and rips through a really solid, and all too short, set which he ends by mooning the audience.

    Bonus Tracks:

    Skydography / Planet of Dogs / Miss Argentina

    Mostly stuff shot inside a radio station, this isn't the best material in the collection but it's interesting to see.

    All three performances are framed at 1.33.1, which seems like the right aspect ratio, and are presented with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio. These are sourced from older analogue tapes but the quality is decent enough. There are some screen caps and a video clip provided towards the end of this review.

    Disc Seven - Acoustics KO:

    Butt Town / Foolish Dreams / Beggar / The Wind / Starry Night / Brick By Brick / I Am / Think Alone / LA Blues / Nightclubbing

    This is a decent set of Iggy doing his solo acoustic thing again. There are no details as to when or where this was recorded include in the set but it's neat to hear him do some deeper catalogue cuts on this set and the quality of the performance is pretty strong.

    Disc Eight - Telluric Chaos (Live):

    Loose / Down on the Street / 1969 / I Wanna Be Your Dog / TV Eye / Dirt / Real Cool Time / No Fun / 1970 / Fun House / Skull Ring / Dead Rock Star / Little Electric Chair / Little Doll / My Idea of Fun / I Wanna Be Your Dog / Not Right

    This last disc is from a 2004 concert that The Stooges played in Japan, at this point the lineup consisting of Iggy, the Asheton Brothers, Mike Watt and Steven Mackay. This is pretty killer stuff, the band is in very fine form and clearly really having a great time playing together. The sound quality here is also quite good, at least for Stooges show, and the eighty-minute set list is, while pretty much a greatest hits set, full of crowd pleasers. It's a nice way to finish off the collection with a more recent take on some classic material.

    Additionally, this boxed set comes packaged with an insert booklet containing an essay entitled The Story Of Metallic KO and Telluric Chaos that offers plenty of detail and history on Skydog's various Iggy and Stooges related releases by Iggy Pop biographer Paul Trynka as well as a eulogy of sorts for Skydog co-founder Marc Zermati (who sadly passed away in June of 2020) and details on each one of the discs included in this set. It's pretty comprehensive and a very nice addition to the collection, and it's also got some great archival photos inside. All of this is packaged in a nice, sturdy box that holds the discs, which are each packaged inside their own cardboard sleeve (watch out, don't scratch them!), and the book quite nicely.

    Iggy And The Stooges - From K.O. To Chaos - The Final Word:

    Iggy And The Stooges - From K.O. To Chaos is a really nice set, comprehensive and well put together. The content is generally really strong, especially the material on the first three discs, and some of the rarities are seriously cool to have. Throw in a fun DVD of some solo performances from Iggy and a great booklet providing a very welcome history for these recordings and it's easy to recommend this to anyone who appreciates The Stooges' ridiculously important catalogue and wants more than just the original three main albums in their collection. Highly recommended!

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