November 8, 2011
Thankfully, I was able to acquire a copy of See A Little Light - Bob Mould's autobiography - through my local library. After reading a very disappointing Husker Du bio earlier this year (which featured content from Greg Norton and Grant Hart), I was wondering how this would come about - would Bob Mould come off (as his ex-bandmates suggest) as an absolute control freak...or as a misunderstood genius?
I'm glad to say that the book straddles a thin line - Mould admits his past mistakes (even suggesting that yes, he might have been a little too driven), but is a pretty decent, well-thought memoir. Even in discussing potentially hot-button topics (such as his life in and out of the closet as a gay man), Mould demonstrates a strong, well-considered sense of discretion. Some reviews have suggested that this book is a little too cut-and-dry; I appreciated the fact that Mould pulls no punches in discussing his experiences, but seems to have been spurred by co-author Michael Azerrad to shape the narrative.
In terms of content, well....I don't think a fiction writer could have introduced turns and twists. Yes, we get the low-down on Mould's perspective of the Husker Du breakup. (In short - saying it here seems like spoiling). Mould's take on various aspects of his solo career range from the insightful to extremely self-critical. When we get to the later point of his life - from writing for professional wrestling to his involvement with electronic music - it seems like a radical turn, yet Mould places it in a great perspective where it seems like the only logical outcome.
See A Little Light is one of the better musician autobiographies....one that does what a good book should: lead you back to the artists' music.
This book has probably done as much to open my late-adult, yet-still-confused mind as Zen Arcade did back in the day.
Good job, Bob.