(K. Brent Tomer),
THEY were the other great 1980s music story from Minneapolis, the ultimate “band that mattered” in the American college-rock era. But the Replacements were also a band not so much uncomfortable with success as violently allergic to it. A new biography, suffused with sadness, dysfunction and unrealised potential, charts the doomed trajectory of one of America’s greatest crews of blindingly talented misfits, poised to fail.
The Replacements were a contradiction from inception, playing beer-soaked odes to going nowhere with an unrivaled passion. The band’s scrappy songs brimmed with punk attitude, but tossed out the subcultural signifiers for an everyman perspective. Shaped in working-class Catholic neighbourhoods of south Minneapolis, The Replacements also offered a dead-end counterpoint to MTV’s airbrushed hair-metal foppery. “Let It Be” from 1984, arguably the band’s peak, expressed Midwestern desperation and youthful longing in underachiever anthems, managing both poignant ballads and blazing rockers.
In “<a…Continue reading