Edgar Wright's excellent new film The World's End, like all of Wright's movies, has a terrific soundtrack. I'm guessing that his latest will inspire a lot of viewers to check out Sisters of Mercy and/or Primal Scream, the latter of whom's "Loaded" is regularly quoted by a few of the film's characters. Yet on my way out of the theater, it was Mudhoney's "In 'n' Out of Grace" that was on my mind.
Over a year before "Loaded," a little-known Seattle band used the same "We wanna be free" sample (from Roger Corman's The Wild Angels) on their EP Superfuzz Bigmuff. "Grunge" and "Sub Pop" were not household names yet, and Mudhoney never really would be, but that EP holds up with the best rock music from that era. It doesn't need context, but if we're going to provide it, one could hear Superfuzz Bigmuff as Ten and Nevermind's cooler, noisier older brother.
Superfuzz Bigmuff is chock full of classics, especially on 1990's Superfuzz Bigmuff (Plus Early Singles) reissue. But "In 'n' Out of Grace" gets extra points for its hilariously antitheistic lyrics, and for blowing down the conventions of punk song structure--a drum solo, why not? Songs like "In 'n' Out of Grace" weren't going to get Mudhoney on the radio, even if Nirvana fever temporarily won them (along with the Melvins, the Butthole Surfers, the Meat Puppets and more) a major label deal. But 25 years later, they're still here for those of us who want something a little nastier.