25557-1 Pleased To Meet Me
Produced by Jim Dickinson
Released on October 1987
US CHART POSITION #131
Find it at GEMM
25557-1 cover
[high resolution scan]

T he boys ditch their lead guitarist and move to Memphis to record a big album with Big Star producer Jim Dickinson. It could have been their breakthrough album, but the Mats had no intention of fixing something so perfectly broken. One glance at the cover, affirmed by the opening “I.O.U.,” tells you everything you need to know about the Mats and their new friends. Similar to Tim, which frankly had better material, Pleased To Meet Me is raucous and unrepentantly sloppy: a bonafide apostle of the punk and roll spirit. Producer Dickinson cleans up the sound a little, mostly on the closing “Can’t Hardly Wait” (which features the Memphis Horns), yet calling this a more commercial album than Tim obscures the point that both albums are pointedly rough and rude. No revelations await listeners of Tim, except maybe that Paul Westerberg plays a meaner guitar than we might have imagined. There’s the achingly sad ballad (“Skyway”), the unorthodox love song (“Valentine”), the homage to Alex Chilton (“Alex Chilton”), the impotent rage of youth (“Never Mind”), et cetera. The band does seem to try a few new tricks, including faux smoky nightclub jazz (“Nightclub Jitters”) and a rocker that for the life of me sounds like early U2 (“The Ledge”). They’re not the better parts of Pleased. Now, I should warn you, I’m one of those poor bastards who actually prefers All Shook Down. I think the band cleans up nice, and I certainly don’t look to the Mats to be the second coming of the Stones (two very different bands, IMO). My affection for the earlier albums has more to do with indomitable youth and the band’s persistent middle finger to fame. I may not love this album, but I love that they made it. If you combined the half of this album that kicks ass with Tim’s ass-kicking half, you’d have a whole lot of ass-kicking to consider.

TRACK LISTING

  1. I.O.U.    (Paul Westerberg)    2:57
  2. ALEX CHILTON    (Paul Westerberg/Tommy Stinson/Chris Mars)    3:12
  3. I DON'T KNOW    (Paul Westerberg/Tommy Stinson/Chris Mars)    3:19
  4. NIGHTCLUB JITTERS    (Paul Westerberg)    2:44
  5. THE LEDGE    (Paul Westerberg)    4:04
  6. NEVER MIND    (Paul Westerberg)    2:47
  7. VALENTINE    (Paul Westerberg/Tommy Stinson/Chris Mars)    3:31
  8. SHOOTING DIRTY POOL    (Paul Westerberg/Tommy Stinson/Chris Mars)    2:20
  9. RED RED WINE    (Paul Westerberg/Tommy Stinson/Chris Mars)    2:59
  10. SKYWAY    (Paul Westerberg)    2:04
  11. CAN'T HARDLY WAIT    (Paul Westerberg)    3:02

    CD reissue bonus disc
  12. BIRTHDAY GAL
  13. VALENTINE
  14. BUNDLE UP
  15. PHOTO
  16. ELECTION DAY
  17. ALEX CHILTON (ALTERNATE VERSION)
  18. KICK IT IN
  19. ROUTE 66
  20. TOSSIN' 'N' TURNIN'
  21. CAN'T HARDLY WAIT (ALTERNATE VERSION)
  22. COOL WATER

CREDITS

CHRIS MARS -- drums, cowbell, foot tap, background vocals, dustsleeve illustration
TOMMY STINSON -- bass, upright bass, acoustic guitar, guitar fills, background vocals
PAUL WESTERBERG -- vocals, electric and acoustic guitars, piano, 6-string bass, harmonica
Ben Jr. (Ben Cauley) -- trumpet (10)
Alex Chilton -- guitar fills (10)
Luther Dickinson -- guitar solo (8)
Teenage Steve Douglas -- baritone sax, bass flute
Prince Gabe -- saxophone (4)
Max Hulls -- strings (10)
Andrew Love -- tenor sax (10)
East Memphis Slim (Jim Dickinson) -- keyboards, organ, vibes, background vocals
Vito (James Lancaster) -- background vocals, production assistant, inner sleeve photography
John Hampton -- engineer, mixing
Joe Hardy -- engineer, mixing
Jeri McManus-Heiden -- art direction
Glenn Parsons -- design
Daniel Corrigan -- cover photography, inner sleeve photography

return to THE REPLACEMENTS discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US April 1987 Sire LP/CS/CD 25557-1/4/W2-25557 picture sleeve
CAN/GER 1987 Sire LP 925557-1 picture sleeve
JPN 1991 Warner CD WPCP-4062  
UK September 23, 2008 Rhino 2CDX 79902 digital remaster w. bonus disc

 

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