No strangers to double albums during their lifetime, Hüsker Dü are set to add a double live album to a discography that already features the two-disc set Zen Arcade.
Longhorn Tonight is due later this year and will compile a handful of the seminal Minneapolis trio’s appearances at their local home town venue, according to former bassist Greg Norton.
“It’s amazing how well the stuff holds up; I’m just blown away. It could be because it was a good sound system at the Longhorn. It was a good room to record in, and there were only, like maybe, 25 or 30 people there,” he told Conan Neutron’s Protonic Reversal podcast.
Known as the CBGB of Minneapolis, Jay’s Longhorn Bar (or more simply, the Longhorn) was one of the gravitational centres of the local Minneapolis punk/hardcore scene. the Longhorn hosted some of the biggest names of the late ‘70s New York punk scene, including Blondie, Talking Heads and the Ramones, as well as UK acts like the Buzzcocks, Gang of Four and The Police. The Longhorn had a short life, opening in 1978 and closing in 1980, but it left an indelible mark on the region’s music
The venue was also the first real club Hüsker Dü played, Norton said. That 13 May 1979 show marked the band’s debut as a trio, after three gigs with Charlie Pine on keyboards. The live album’s planned title is a nod to the frequency with which they played there.
“[It’s] going to be called Hüsker Dü Longhorn Tonight, which is taken from a flyer that we put out. We played The Longhorn a lot, so we made up a flyer that said, ‘hey, we’re playing there tonight’ and then, whenever we’d get a gig, we’d just go and hand the flyers out to people,” Norton said.
Hüsker Dü Longhorn Tonight will be the band’s first release since 2017’s Savage Young Dü boxset of early material that included two tracks from the July 1979 Longhorn show thought to be the band’s earliest live recording.
Formed in 1979, Hüsker Dü’s first album was 1982’s live Land Speed Record. They went on to put out six more records – two of them doubles – and a mini-album before breaking up in January 1988. Their discography then gained posthumous live album The Living End in 1994.
Meanwhile, former Hüsker Dü guitarist Bob Mould has a forthcoming US tour in support of his solo career-spanning Distortion boxset and Blue Hearts album, both released last year.
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I’m a punk rock aficionado, martial arts pupil and fair-to-middling student of the Bengali language. I’m also a journalist, writer and editor, specialising in medicine and technology.
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