Moby & Opinions on The Julie Ruin

Moby became the face of techno with the blockbuster success of his 1999 album Play. In his new memoir Porcelain, he explores his origins in the underground rave scene of '80s New York up until his mainstream success. Moby joins Jim and Greg for a conversation. Plus, a review of the new album from post-Riot Grrrl band The Julie Ruin.

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Moby – who first appeared on the show in 2006 – arrived in New York City in the late '80s as a sober Christian vegan making his way through the nascent underground club scene. A decade later, he was the public face of techno, selling 10 million copies of his album Play and living a life of excess. He's written all about his early career in a new memoir Porcelain, a book Jim compares to Charles Mingus's Beneath the Underdog as one of the great musical autobiographies.

This week Moby speaks with Jim and Greg about the gritty but exuberant heyday of rave culture and house music – and how quickly it all ended. After a string of club hits, Moby confused some critics with the eclectic 1995 album Everything is Wrong, and alienated just about everybody with the hardcore punk-inspired Animal Rights in 1996. But 1999's Play was an unprecedented smash, which led, as Moby explains, to the traditional rise-and-fall story arc of fame and decadence.

reviewHit ResetHit Reset available on iTunes

The Julie Ruin Hit Reset

As a pioneer of the Riot Grrrl movement, Kathleen Hanna is comfortable making a bold statement with her music. The Julie Ruin, the current project from the ex-Bikini Kill and Le Tigre member, finds her continuing to make a statement, but a much more personal and introspective one. The new album Hit Reset finds Hanna dealing with issues like illness and abuse. Jim and Greg both have deep respect for Hanna's body of work but are divided on her vocal abilities on this record. For Jim, Hanna's songwriting is top-notch but is undercut by the limits of her singing. He says to Try It. Greg isn't bothered by her voice. He finds the variety of musical styles on the album to be ambitious. The girl group style harmonies, new wave homages, and surprising ballads all make it a Buy It.



“Desperados Waiting For A Train”Guy Clark

In his Desert Island Jukebox pick for this week, Greg pays tribute to the late country legend Guy Clark, who died on May 17 at age 74. Although he was never as well known as some of his contemporaries, Greg wants to emphasize Clark's influence as a songwriter and his reputation among Texas musicians for his generosity and musicianship. He wrote about drifters and rebels and mentored many prominent country musicians. Greg selects the song Desperados Waiting For A Train from the 1975 album Old Number One as an example of the kind of sparse, raw songs that Guy Clark was best at writing.

Featured Songs

  1. Moby, Porcelain, Play, V2, 1999
  2. Pavement, In the Mouth a Desert, Slanted and Enchanted, Matador, 1992
  3. Doug Lazy, Let It Roll, Doug Lazy Gettin' Crazy, Atlantic, 1990
  4. Moby, Go, Go, Instinct, 1991
  5. Vatican Commandos, Why Must I Follow, Hit Squad for God, Pregnant Nun, 1983
  6. Moby, God Moving Over the Face of the Waters, Everything is Wrong, Mute, 1995
  7. Moby, All That I Need is to Be Loved, Everything is Wrong, Mute, 1995
  8. Moby, Someone to Love, Animal Rights, Mute, 1996
  9. Moby, Bring Back My Happiness, Everything is Wrong, Mute, 1995
  10. Moby, Why Does My Heart Feel So Bad?, Play, V2, 1999
  11. Moby, Bodyrock, Play, V2, 1999
  12. Moby, Honey, Play, V2, 1999
  13. Moby, Natural Blues, Play, V2, 1999
  14. Moby, We Are All Made of Stars, 18, V2, 2002
  15. The Chainsmokers, Don't Let Me Down (feat. Daya), Don't Let Me Down, Columbia, 2015
  16. Moby, Next Is The E (Feel It), Next Is The E, Instinct, 1992
  17. Moby, Feeling So Real, Everything is Wrong, Mute, 1995
  18. Moby, Move (You Make Me Feel So Good), Everything is Wrong, Mute, 1995
  19. The Julie Ruin, I Decide, Hit Reset, Hardly Art, 2016
  20. The Julie Ruin, Let Me Go, Hit Reset, Hardly Art, 2016
  21. The Julie Ruin, Hello Trust No One, Hit Reset, Hardly Art, 2016
  22. The Julie Ruin, Calverton, Hit Reset, Hardly Art, 2016
  23. Guy Clark, Desperados Waiting for the Train, Old No. 1, RCA Victor, 1975
  24. Wilson Pickett, 634-5789, The Exciting Wilson Pickett, Atlantic, 1966
  25. De La Soul, Stakes Is High, Stakes Is High, Tommy Boy, 1996
  26. Carly Simon, Let The River Run, Working Girl (Original Soundtrack), Arista, 1989
  27. AC/DC, It's a Long Way To the Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘N’ Roll), T.N.T., Albert, 1975
  28. Chicago, Vote For Me, Chicago XI, Columbia, 1977
  29. John Lennon, Gimme Some Truth, Imagine, Apple, 1971

Footnotes Moby on SO in 2006 Moby's Porcelain Jim's Porcelain review Greg's Moby interview Oliver Sacks on SO Riot Grrrl Genre Dissection Greg's Julie Ruin review Obituary of Guy Clark Guy Clark Greg on Guy Clark's“Boats to Build”