Album Spotlight::Dinosaur Jr. – Green Mind

I know a lot has been written on Dinosaur Jr., with a special concentration on Bug and You’re Living All Over Me. No doubt those records are good, but I have been a long time fan and Green Mind is by far my favorite. Originally released on Sire records in 1991 after a lineup change and some musical alterations, the record is full of one great song after another and shows J. bringing out a lot more acoustic guitar. I think the melodies on Green Mind are Dinosaur Jr.’s best, and I think J. does some fine singing here. A lot of the songs are long on this record with a couple closing in on six minutes. Right out of the gate “The Wagon” rips us into submission and later throws it into high gear with that bridge – “theres a place I go but you’re not there and I’m supposed to know.” Furthermore, I love how the end of “Blowin’ It” morphs into I Live For That Look and just when you think it can’t get any catchier here comes that sassy chorus – “you run around. you want see tomorrow see today no way.” Flying Cloud is an acoustic number with a Neil Young vibe and some sinister bass drum hitting. Then we’re back in high gear again with the driving”How’d You Pin That One On Me?,” which has J. going off on guitar with one of those raging ragged solos of his. “Water” has a shimmering guitar strum that highlights the chorus, and of course there is a great bridge in there as well. I love the hippyish sway to “Muck,” complete with double tracked vocals on the verses to give the track a nice effect.

For the most part I don’t know what the lyrics are about in these songs, but there are always these lines which stick out and make some connection with me. I love the sardonic lyrics that start “Thumb” off – “There never really is a good time. Theres always nothing much to say. Pretty good, not doing that fine. Getting up most every day.” It pretty much sums up how a bunch of us probably feel. Last but not least, on the title track J. tells us “…on a certain level I think they’re great but on another I can’t relate to anything they do.” Green Mind has the songs, sounds great, and feels like J.’s coming out confessional party.

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