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Hüsker Dü: The Story of the Noise-Pop Pioneers Who Launched Modern Rock

3.35  ·  Rating Details  ·  229 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
Bob Mould, Grant Hart, and Greg Norton formed Husker Du in 1979 as a wildly cathartic outfit fueled by a cocktail of anger, volume, and velocity. Here's the first book to dissect the trio that countless critics and musicians have cited as one of the most influential bands of the 1980s. Author Andrew Earles examines how Husker Du became the first hardcore band to marry pop ...more
ebook, 288 pages
Published November 15th 2010 by Voyageur Press (MN) (first published January 1st 2010)
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Andrew Earles’ near-authorized (Bob Mould refused to comment?) bio of the Huskers is absolutely exhaustive. Unfortunately, the casual fan may find it ultimately exhausting. (Ha! Awesome cliché-punning. More after the jump!)

This is the type of book that is an ultra-fan’s wet dream. It puts into narrative form the obscure, compulsive lists, cross-references and premium on completionist zeal that is the white hot ichor sustaining the life of the obsessive fan.

And to that specific audience, this boo
Ross Creuswell
Hmmm the title of this book has changed since it was added to goodreads database. It's now "Husker Du: The Story of the Noise-Pop Pioneers Who Launched Modern Rock". As a die-hard fan who actually saw Husker Du live in early 1986 and met Bob and Greg at the gig, I was surprised to learn how little I knew about the band. Back when they were together, not much was known about them way down here in Texas in those pre-internet days.

This book is quite flawed but until Bob Mould finishes his memoirs i
Feb 08, 2011 Andrew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quite a boring treatment of the greatest rock band of all time, but since it's the only real book out there about the band it gets an auto pass. Husker Du should be a section in the bookstore.
Sep 11, 2015 Dav rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book has a lot of flaws, mostly in poor editing. Extra star just because I enjoyed learning more about Hüsker Dü. I'm going to read Mould's own book next for a different bias.
Sep 07, 2012 Jim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've been a huge fan of the Huskers/Bob Mould for nearly 20 years (sadly, I'm too young to have seen them when they were around), but put off reading this one for a while despite the fact that it's obviously up my alley.

My main reason for doing that, of course, was because of Mould's own book, published about eight months after this one. (Mould didn't participate in the making of this book because, well, he wrote his own.) Having read Mould's last year, it was time to finally read this one.

As Ea
Tommy Carlson

As a counter-point to Bob's autobiography, I read this Bob-less biography of Husker Du. By Bob-less I mean that Bob didn't contribute to it. If you want the truth about Husker Du, it surely lies somewhere between this book and Bob's.

That's if you can make it though this sprawling mess. Honestly, did anyone edit this? At all? Whole sections are repeated. Seriously. There's a chunk about the Suicide Commandos, including a lengthy quote, that is simply repeated twice. How could anyone miss that? An
Jan 03, 2013 Jamie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a teenager listening to Hüsker Dü in the late 80s, finding any information beyond the what was contained in the band's (admittedly hugely eloquent) lyrics, bar the few paragraphs included on the inner sleeve of Warehouse: Songs And Stories, seemed frustratingly difficult. The UK music press were admirably positive about the band, but I wanted to know more - who were these people, writing these wonderfully human, unforgettable songs? Where did their singular sound come from? My treasured copy ...more
Jul 30, 2011 Stenwjohnson rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
The major flaws of Andrew Earles’ “Husker Du: The Story of the Noise-Pop pioneers who launched modern rock” are evident in the book’s hyperventilating title. Indie rock writing is often a strange mixture of elitism and adolescent overstatement, and Earles is no exception. In his introduction, he lauds the late Twin Cities’ band’s catalog as “untouchable,” while lamenting their tragic, unsung influence on an endless taxonomy of alt-rock bands.

The band doesn’t need such strong, self-conscious che
Jan 24, 2016 Jeff rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, music
First off, the title of the book I had was: Husker Du: The Story of the Noise-Pop Pioneers Who Launched Modern Rock. I thought the book was OK. Parts of it were about record labels, other bands, and ancillary people in the Husker world and I found those parts to be a slog. The parts focused strictly on Husker Du, especially the last few chapters, I found very interesting. I especially liked the song-by-song breakdown analysis of their albums and first hand take from Hart and Norton about the fin ...more
Jerry Rocha
Sep 12, 2015 Jerry Rocha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really good shit here. I had heard of the band, but never listened to them. I was a fan of Earles work in various music magazines, and picked up the book as a "why not?". It's great. Now I love the band and their story.
Michael Batz
Apr 01, 2015 Michael Batz rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
I'm only halfway done, but I better rate it now because I may never finish it. Honestly, reading it has become a slog, which is a shame, because the band is awesome and important, and there's a lot of new and lovingly captured stuff in here. It kills me to criticize such a sincere effort by a writer I admire, but I think Earles's short reviews were poor preparation for this beast. It's written in a strange voice that is somehow dryly academic while being full of personal opinion, and it drives m ...more
While this can be interesting for a fan of the Du, this book contains so much repetition that it becomes annoying to read. This is not helped by the fact that Bob Mould was not interviewed for this project as he was working on his biography at the same time.
Drew Athans
Mar 03, 2014 Drew Athans rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My full review is on my website:

A good book overall although I found the author's writing style and the way he put the book together a bit grating at times. It's essential to also have Bob Mould's memoir to go alongside this if you want to have the complete story of Husker Du with more details.
Dec 31, 2010 Al rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fun read if you're into the band. Andrew Earles talks to everyone except Bob Mould, who is working on his own autobiography. Comes with a "What Would Hüsker Dü?" bumper sticker.

I already knew most every story in the book, but it was still fun to relive it in book form. Something I did now know was that the Dü chose the title "Flip Your Lid" because Mould/Hart were being incessantly compared to Lennon/McCartney at the time. So this band named their album after The Beatles' board game, "Flip You
Dec 28, 2010 Steve rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pretty decent overall. The chronology is shakey and there's some redundancy but don't let that keep you from reading it. Covers a really interesting period and has some nice historical background info (ie SST, Soma Records, Nicollet Studios, etc). I'm not crazy that one third of the band (Bob Mould) was never interviewed for this project. Hardcore Husker fans probably won't find anything new here but Mpls music fans in general will likely dig this.
Nov 15, 2010 Daniel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Every single solidary time I see an asinine sticker stuck to some horse&%^t CD proclaiming, as a selling point, something along the lines of "Five years in the making! Over 70 minutes of music!" I think back fondly to Husker Du and I smile.

Then, I purchase said horse&%^t CD with asinine sticker, unwrap the CD from its encasing cellophane, stick the CD in the corner and fondly urinate on it.

Thank you Husker Du.
R.E. Caceres
Jun 03, 2012 R.E. Caceres rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography, music
I tried. Believe me I tried. I wanted to like this book. But after trying to read it for six months, I just couldn't get to page 100. Just not good.

There's a wonderful grasp of the subject, but there's a failure in storytelling and organization. Try it, the band deserves your attempt. But don't work too hard to get through it. If you're not feeling it, you're never going to. Trust me, I tried.
Nice compliment to 'Our Band Could Be Your Life', but focusing specifically on Husker Du & twin cities scene. Lovingly researched & to it's credit, focused more on the music than the's a long overdue look at a band that played a crucial role laying the groundwork for today's scene. It sets the stage properly for Bob Mould's bio (due 2011 from Little Brown).
Jun 16, 2013 George rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A treasure trove of detail, but not a book written with any style or real sense of exactly what Hüsker Dü accomplished; a great opportunity missed. The best stuff on the band remains Azerrad's chatty 30+ pages in Our Band Could Be Your Life and various early journalistic efforts by Simon Reynolds in Melody Maker and Simon Frith in The Observer
Apr 29, 2013 Barry rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I loved Husker Du back in the 80s, but all this book reminded me of was how bland and tedious most mid-80s post-HC "underground" rock was, and how the lousy 90s indie rock that came afterwords can be blamed on it...this book is the literary equivalent of being locked in a grain silo with Garrison Keillor.
Andy Hart
Since I do love Husker Du, I certainly enjoyed reading this. The books strongest area was that it seemed to be well-researched. Other than that, not particularly well written, and needed quite a bit of work in the editing department. But, if you are a fan of Husker Du, I'm sure you'd enjoy this.
Gary Shindler
True to the reports I read beforehand the book is kind of average telling the band's history. Bob Mould didn't contribute since he is publishing a book at some point. If you're a Husker Du fan this book isn't a waste of your time; it's just not one of the great rock bios.
Jon Rose
I was pleasantly surprised with this book. By not being a part of the Minneapolis scene the author brings a good perspective. He actually did a lot of research and interviews, which I think helped make this a pretty objective book.
Kurt Reichenbaugh
From a band I got to see live, way back in the mid-80's, I'd be interested in reading this. Go listen to "Books about UFO's" from NEW DAY RISING and see if it's not one of the greatest songs ever.
Could have been better, should have been better. Ill read Mould's book some time this summer. But it will be obviously biased, So then Hart will have to write a book, and then maybe Norton.
Jul 24, 2012 Devowasright rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: music, biography
an excellent, concise overview, thankfully eschewing a rehash of all the negativity so readily spewed for decades by the music press. well done.
May 11, 2014 Justin rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Good Overall but the middle did drag quite a bit.
Nov 26, 2010 Scott rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Finished this - waiting for the answers for my interview.
It's a pretty good book - i'll write up a review as part of my interview
awesome history lesson for me. . .i was still in hi-skoool!!
Richard Ladew
Jan 16, 2012 Richard Ladew rated it it was ok
A lot of interesting facts here, but dry, and in need of editing.
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