Attack of the Killer Track! is a series that explores tracks from artists from a variety of genres. Some of the tracks were singles, some of them were obscure b-sides or long forgotten album tracks. One thing is certain – all of them are killer tracks.
Mick Jagger had sympathy for the Devil. Robert Johnson sold his soul to the Devil at the crossroads. Ozzy Osbourne sold his soul to Rock ‘N’ Roll OR the Devil (depending on what you believe). Ian Brown? Ian Brown didn’t need to do any of that. As far as opening lines in the history of music, I’d be hard pressed to think of one more impressive than “I don’t have to sell my soul / he’s already in me” from I Wanna Be Adored by The Stone Roses, released in 1989. A statement of intent, confrontation, and mystery. The Stone Roses hadn’t arrived overnight, of course – they’d toiled as a Goth-lite outfit in the mid 80’s before slowly arriving at their sound. In the UK it was “Baggy” – in the US it was “Indie” or whatever else the press could think of (Alternative was a few years away). I Wanna Be Adored was the 3rd single to be lifted from the self-titled debut album, and remains my favorite song by The Stone Roses. The slow fade in of instruments increases anticipation for Brown’s opening lines – make no mistake – Mani’s bass lines, John Squire’s guitar licks, and Reni’s drum fills are among the most memorable ever laid down to tape. Ian Brown doesn’t enter the mix until the 1:45 mark and it’s a vocal performance for the ages. Defiant, questioning, full of emotion – it is simply perfect. The song is a not just an 80’s classic or a great song from the Baggy era – this is one of the greatest songs in all of Rock ‘N’ Roll history.