Love Rears Its Ugly Head
I always thought our relationship was cool
You played the role of having sense
I always played the fool
Now something's different
I don't know the reason why
Whenever we separate
I almost want to cry
Oh no, please not that again
Love rears up its ugly head
And when I come home late you don't complain or call
So as a consequence I don't go out at all
My friends are frightened
They don't know what's going on
They think you put a spell on me
And now my mind is gone
Love's not so bad they say
But you never know where love is gonna go
Does anybody really know?
I'm standing at the altar
As they play the wedding march
I'm in a black tuxedo with my collar full of starch
She looks as lovely as she's ever gonna get
I wake up from this nightmare in a pool of sweat
What you gonna do
What you gonna do when it comes and gets you?
I am a huge Living Colour fan, and I was fortunate to have seen them live, in 1989 when they opened up for the Rolling Stones on their Steel Wheels tour. Just amazing. But, I was a fan of LC since their first hit, "Middle Man". It's funny to watch how their career had changed from the beginning. They began as no more than Vernon Reid's experimental funk fusion band (in fact they were called Vernon Reid's Living Colour at first), before they reached the point where they were "discovered" by Mick Jagger. Even though they got the promotion from Epic Records, I don't even think the label knew how to promote them. As a black band that played "rock" in 1988, that was truly the "alternative", way before the term was hip. At first they were promoted as an "alternative"/college-type band. Once MTV broke out with "Cult Of Personality", it became a hit and they got massive attention. Other songs from that first album became hits as well, including "Open Letter To A Landlord", "Funny Vibe" (I loved the Prince Paul remix), and of course "Glamour Boys".
Mainstream music fans loved these wacky black guys with goofy hair and Body Glove surfing suits, but once they released "TIME'S UP", fans experienced even more experimentation, right down to full out speed metal. Their opening spot for Guns N' Roses was very controversial, but was well executed.
But back to "TIME'S UP". This album was great too, better songwriting, better playing, and Corey Glover just went off. "Pride", "Love Rears Its Ugly Head", and the funny "Elvis Is Dead" are all classics.
Album #3 has massive potential, and the group knew it.It was called "STAIN", which included former Sugar Hill Records bassist Doug Wimbish (the man who played the bass line in "Rapper's Delight"). Nothing against Muzz Skillings, who was a great bassist, but Wimbish played the bass like it was a piano and a percussion instrument at the same time, like Iron Maiden's Steve Harris. The combinationof Reid, Glover, Wimbish, and drummer Will Calhoun was ultra tight, and I remember watching an MTV Spring Break where they played "Nothingness", and it was just so powerful.
The entire "STAIN" album was great, with the breakneck "Go Away", "Leave It Alone", "Bi", "Auslander", and the very deep "Wall". I still love the emphasis in the word "US", and... I just wanted more. A year or two later, the group announced they were going their separate ways. Apparently Reid and Glover had differences in the way they wanted the group to go, and since no one could agree, they ended things on a silent note.
I have about 50 live tapes from Living Colour, mostly taken from their early tours in support of "VIVID". Just as Led Zeppelin collectors get off on Jimmy Page ripping a new solo each night, I enjoyed hearing Vernon Reid going off in different directions for each show, and Corey Glover always being unpredictable. For me, it was always about the music, never about the image. I don't think I would have collected the live tapes if it was about dreads and Body Glove suits. Since then, Corey Glover has done a few solo tracks (he covered John Lennon's "Imagine" on the "RHYTHM OF THE GAMES" comp on LaFace Records two years ago), and is preparing for the release of his debut album.
Vernon Reid released a classic album last year called "MISTAKEN IDENTITY", co-produced with Teo Macero (Miles Davis' longtime producer) and Prince Paul (everyone from De La Soul to Queen Latifah to Fine Young Cannibals). If you want jazz, funk, hip hop, soul, and noise, pick Reid's album up.
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