Massachusets alternative legends Dinosaur Jr. have played on the latest episode of NPR’s ‘Tiny Desk (Home) Concert’ series. The trio, frontman J Mascis, bassist Lou Barlow, and drummer Murph launched into a brilliant set featuring old and new tracks. The set was comprised of ‘I Ain’t’, ‘Garden, ‘Feel the Pain’, ‘I Ran Away’ and ‘Freak Scene’.
Broadcast on Tuesday, 3rd August, the electric performance was filmed in the empty Shea Theatre in Turners Falls, Massachusetts. ‘I Ain’t’, ‘Garden’ and ‘I Ran Away’ are taken from their latest album, Sweep It Into Space, which was released in April this year. No Dinosaur Jr. set would be complete without ‘Feel the Pain’ from 1994’s Without a Sound and ‘Freak Scene’ from 1988’s pioneering Bug.
Sweep It Into Space is yet another triumphant outing from the alternative legends. It was recorded and co-produced in part by Kurt Vile, who even plays the twelve-string guitar on the first single, ‘I Ran Away’. The album has been hailed as the best of Dinosaur Jr.’s output since the original lineup reformed in 2005.
Dinosaur Jr. is undoubtedly one of the most important alternative bands of all time. Starting off in the local hardcore and skate scene of the ’80s, they have been equally influential on the development of grunge and shoegaze. Acts ranging from Nirvana, Swervedriver, and of course, Kurt Vile rank in their droves of adoring fans. If you were to heed the ubiquity of the Fender Jazzmaster in alternative and indie, much of this could be put down to the enduring influence of the noise-rock pioneers.
J Mascis is particularly hailed as one of the most influential guitarists of the past 30 years. His use of FX pedals and his roaring technical ability have made him an icon of the six-string. So much so, he has his own range of glittery Fender Jazzmasters. The bespectacled frontman also has one of the most distinctive voices ever put to wax, and the dovetailing vocals of him and Barlow are one of Dinosaur Jr.’s trademarks.
In September, the trio will undertake an extensive North American tour supporting Sweep It Into Space.
Watch the brilliant NPR set, below.