This is one of those albums that hardcore Iggy Pop fans either really love or really hate. I happen to really love Party, I guess partly because it was the first time I had ever heard him. (I discovered it amongst the more recent releases when I first started doing college radio in late '81, at the now defunct KCMU in Seattle.)
Other reasons for liking this album, which came out on Arista records, include the following:
1. Iggy has a real sense of humor, which I find lacking from most music. Dig "Bang Bang" for all kinds of off-the-wall quotes, like: "Lonely?! Ha ha ha! What does it mean? Who, me?!"
2. It is way more, uhhh, pop than anything he's ever done, before or after.
3. The arrangements include strings and horns, yet this is a real rockin' elpee.
4. Ivan Kral and Rob Duprey play some nice guitar licks.
5. Party only reached #166 on the Billboard Top Albums chart. So what?
6. It includes two great covers, "Time Won't Let Me" and "Sea of Love."
7. Every song on this album is a winner.
Those who expect a Stooges-style bloodbath are going to be disappointed, I suppose. But maybe it depends on what you knew about Pop when it came out. As I said, this is the first thing I ever heard by him, so to me it was just a colossal record. After that I discovered Soldier, Lust for Life, and then I got into the Stooges. Sometimes discovering an artist's discography in reverse order is a real good way to get into someone.
Now, then, if you buy Party on the CD that came out in 2000 on Buddha, you get two bonus tracks, which aren't so great, but since they're not part of the original album, you can listen to 'em once and then disregard. Personally, I'd track down a vinyl copy and let 'er rip!
5/5 (Arista, 1981)