Live at Goose Lake, August 8th, 1970
Third Man Records
Ever wish you had a time machine so you could witness legendary music events? Like, you could catch the Beatles honing their sound in Germany, or watch that Sex Pistols gig that inspired generations of bands, or check out the Stax/Volt revue showing Europeans just what soul music was all about. Or you could check out the Goose Lake Festival, a three-day festival billed as Michigan’s Woodstock that featured the Stooges playing their new album Fun House in its entirety. Now that Third Man has released you can save your time machine for more noble pursuits, like killing Hitler or riding a dinosaur. Notable for being the last appearance of original bassist Dave Alexander, Goose Lake shows the Stooges in all their sloppy, explosive glory, even with a few technical missteps. There’s some on-stage tuning, there’s little crowd interaction (at least audibly), but when the band hits, it’s explosive. Alexander was fired soon after this show for getting too high beforehand to play properly, although it’s not super noticeable unless you’re listening for it (which after reading the liner notes, you probably will be). The band as a whole seems to take a while to gel – by the time they get to “1970,” the explosiveness of the studio album seems to finally click, even if it sort of seems to fall apart at the end of the song. Not to say Goose Lake isn’t a great document. Iggy’s opening scream on “TV Eye” channels all the primal energy of the band, and the remastering job clears up the muddy sounding boots that have been circulating for years. “Funhouse” in particular is a showcase for the band, with the rhythm section providing a solid support for Steve Mackay’s sax battling with Ron Asheton’s guitar until it segues into “LA Blues.”
Definitely worth picking up, Goose Lake makes a great addition to the original Stooges albums and when it hits, shows just what all the fuss was about. Plus, it will save wear and tear on your valuable time machine.