Many of the recordings collected on 2-CD 2009 compilation MORE POWER have been released on bootleg or indie labels in one form or another for more than three decades. So we should be grateful to the archivist label Cleopatra for finally gathering them all in one convenient place in these newly-remastered versions. Make no mistake however--these are still mostly the quintessentially lo-fi so-called "Detroit Rehearsal" tapes that were recorded in 1973 in preparation for a nation-wide Iggy & the Stooges tour following the release of the David Bowie-produced RAW POWER earlier that year. Iggy Pop and guitarist James Williamson were still in the midst of a major songwriting binge so the band was essentially rehearsing brand new songs like ""C**K in My Pocket," "Johanna," and "Open Up and Bleed," all prime material for a fourth Stooges album, one which unfortunately never came to be. (One would have to wait till 2007's THE WEIRDNESS to pick up where the band left off).
So these versions are all that remain of the original proto-punk tracks which have influenced modern rock & roll down to the present day. It doesn't hurt that the band, despite well-documented health and drug issues, was in peak working condition. The under-rated Williamson was a kind of American Keith Richards; both his songwriting and playing brought to the Stooges a musical finesse they never quite had before, despite the undeniable though still simple brilliance of FUN HOUSE when Ron Asheton handled the guitar duties. Asheton (who reluctantly moved to bass) and his drummer brother Scott still remain the best rhythm section that Iggy Pop ever had. Most of these rockers, including the famed punk-era 7" "I Got A Right" b/w "Gimme Some Skin," can still burn up the airwaves. Not only classic punk but the hardcore scene which emerged soon after owes everything to them, as influential in their way as Dylan's "Basement Tapes" were on a much different strain of American music.