Announcement has been made of a previously unreleased live album by Hüsker Dü, recorded over four nights between July 1979 and September 1980 at the Longhorn Bar in Minneapolis, MN. The album, entitled TONITE LONGHORN, will first be released as a limited edition 2xLP black vinyl on Record Store Day (4/22) followed by a digital release on August 25 on the band’s own Reflex Records.
The album features the first single, an early performance of “Do You Remember?”, which was originally recorded for the band’s first demo and later released on the Everything Falls Apart bonus track and on the 2017 Savage Young Dü box set by Numero Group.
The live recording has a more garagey and 70s-style punk sound than the studio version. Despite being different from the music the band is best known for, it offers a fascinating glimpse into the band’s formative years and their talent for pop melodies.
Bob Mould explained that TONITE LONGHORN is a comprehensive overview of three teenagers who were paying homage, experimenting with different genres, and building a foundation for things to come. He acknowledges that the band had good chemistry, great melodies and harmonies, and an overabundance of young (and sometimes dumb) enthusiasm, and that they knew they were different and on to something special.
Greg Norton recalled their first audition, where they had no gigs lined up, and how they managed to convince the manager of the Longhorn Bar to let them play the opening set on Friday night. The set is included on the album, recorded on July 13th, 1979. The rest, as they say, is history.
TONITE LONGHORN comes with original flyers and artwork, much of which was created by the late Grant Hart.
It also features liner notes by Thurston Moore, who describes the album as a testament to the band’s ability to play hardcore punk but also to be something else entirely.
He praises Bob Mould’s guitar playing as a punk version of the MC5, with leads that sputter off the fretboard like a demented refraction of Wayne Kramer and Fred ‘Sonic’ Smith. He notes the thunderous command of Grant’s drums and Greg’s primal and swinging bass, which act as two melodious hands holding the jowls of the guitarist and drummer, keeping them in check as the trio blasts to a breathless finish line.
The album captures the raw energy and momentum of the band’s early years and offers a glimpse into the musical prowess that would make them legends.