I just heard the news that Steve Albini died a couple days ago.

Excuse me while I get all up in my feels and repeat myself from my microblog:

Albini has always had a special place in my heart for producing Pixies' Surfer Rosa.

Surfer Rosa was one of those albums that blew my young mind. I later realized that one of my favorite parts of it was its simplicity. Albini didn’t typically allow overdubs. The drums were loud. The album was pretty much a live album.

Surfer Rosa challenged what I thought knew about music. It expanded my definitions and challenged assumptions I wasn’t aware I had.

The masses say that Pixies' Doolittle album is their masterpiece. But for me, it’s Surfer Rosa, which is a timeless piece of art. Sure, the band (one of my top five all-time) deserves much of the credit. But Albini’s production, by not getting in the way of or overshading the band, brought to life the essence of the band. The album is still so raw today. And it doesn’t sound dated at all.

Over the years, I’ve become more familiar with Albini’s other work with The Jesus Lizard, The Breeders, and, of course, Big Black. When you listen to an Albini-produced album, you know what you’re getting. And in that way, Albini was definitely an artist.

I told my cousin just last week that if I ever had a band, I’d want to record an album with Steve Albini just to know what my band was truly worth. This dream was never going to happen, but that was supposed to be because:

  1. I don’t and won’t have a band.
  2. Any band I did have wouldn’t be good enough to be on Albini’s radar anyway.

But the dream wasn’t supposed to be impossible because Albini won’t be around to do his part.

It’s hard not to feel a bit like ‘the end of an era’ today.

Thanks for the tunes, Steve.

Beyond Albini

Albini’s death is another reminder that time is running out for us all. It’s inevitable.

At some point, the reaper collects his debt.

We know how the story ends.

So what do we do about it?

It’s not the destination, it’s the journey.

If you want to do something awesome with your time, today’s a great day to get started.

It’s time to get moving.

P.S. Nirvana’s In Utero > Nevermind–no contest. Don’t @ me.