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***ON LIMITED TRANSPARENT RED VINYL!!! Originally released in 1990, Same Place The Fly Got Smashed was Guided By Voices’ fourth album in as many years. Roughly a concept album about an alcoholic named Joker Bob who goes on a bender, someone dies, and Bob gets the chair (“the electrifying conclusion”). From the moment the needle drops, the listener is served notice that this isn’t going to be an easy listen, as an argument taped off of a TV cuts to a basement recording of a lone, blaring electric guitar with someone yelling over the top. But for those brave enough to pass the opening hazards, there are wonders within.
This particular album has come to be held in higher and higher regard by fans, and they are correct to consider it a top-tier release. The story and sequence have a flow, and consideration for approachability is optional. Many of the crudest tracks reveal themselves as necessary stitches in the album’s tapestry. Yet it also contains all time greats like “Drinker’s Peace,” “Mammoth Cave,” the epic “Local Mix-Up/Murder Charge,” and of course “Pendulum” with its immortal opening line: “Come on over tonight, we’ll put on some Cat Butt and do it up right!”—a rare break in the clouds on one of the band’s darkest albums.
This reissue, like the previous ones in this series, is a mostly faithful reproduction of the original pressing of 500 on the band’s own Rocket #9 label. And like the others, the virgin RTI vinyl is housed in a thick tip-on jacket, and includes Robert Pollard’s original handwritten lyric insert.