Gardenia is an Iggy Pop single. But, the influence of production maestro Josh Homme and drummer extraordinaire Matt Helders is evident throughout its 4 minutes and 15 seconds. Gone is the garage-rock rawness of the Stooges, and with it went Iggy’s nihilistic whine and throat shredding roar, replaced by a low, deep baritone and pulsating synths.
It’s a nightlife song á la ‘Nightclubbing’, a sort of, slightly stoned tune, for clubbers in the 21st century. This is what the future sounds like: a perfect mix of classic and modern. Iggy’s Detroit drawl sounds lived-in, like an old, trustworthy leather jacket. By striking contrast, Helders’ drumming during the bridge sounds youthful and energetic. And that’s what I’m talking about–the classic and the modern.
This isn’t the first time Iggy’s been thrust into the modern age. Take a look at his seminal album, The Idiot. But not since then has he sounded quite like this. Like he’s ready for the world to come at him, but doesn’t care if it does or not. Homme clearly knows his way around a studio, too. The production is perfect, kind of half way between the aforementioned, The Idiot and Arctic Monkeys’ AM. The synthesisers evoke comparisons to Iggy’s Berlin era, when he holed up with Bowie, and the reverb-drenched guitar stabs are reminiscent of Arctic Monkeys’ last effort. The end result is a song that would fit perfectly on either album.
It’s a solid song. However, while the above comparisons are fairly accurate, I’m not sure it’s of the same quality as those two records. But you know what? It’s a little too early to tell if Post Pop Depression will live up to its predecessors. So lets skip the speculation shall we?
For now, we’ll just kick back and enjoy this cracking tune along with Break Into Your Heart, the other song that has been released in anticipation of the upcoming album. Whether or not the album lives up to expectations is irrelevant. What we have here is the most exciting musical collaboration in recent memory between some of the most pivotal figures in pop music. However it turns out, I for one, am honoured to be taken along for the ride.