My Top 1000 Songs #660: Brave Captain

[I've been writing up my Top 1000 songs on a daily basis--you can see them all in descending order by hitting the All My Favorite Songs tag.] 

I realize it's blasphemy, but I listen to Firehose a lot more than I do the Minutemen. Obviously the latter were one of the most unique, groundbreaking post-punk bands of the 80s, a striking blend of jazz and punk and political theater... but after frontman D. Boon sadly passed, the new band--with singer/guitarist Ed Crawford out front--infused the mix with some post-R.E.M. college radio jangle. Firehose retained the creative flair--and, of course, in Mike Watt and George Hurley, still had arguably the most interesting rhythm section in the game--but ventured into more (alt.) radio-friendly territory, at least on a few songs per album, making them a little more durable to my ears.

"Brave Captain," off their 1986 debut Ragin', Full-On, is a case in point. Watt's bass is all over the place, but it's tied to a crisp slash of classic rock, arty and odd and almost proggy, but still catchy. And to this day is one of those tracks that makes me feel like I'm still in the booth at the college station spinning vinyl.

2012 reunion gig: