This year The Replacements’ discography, with the help of Rhino, got the reissue treatment. Their first four albums, the Twin/Tone years (aka the indie years), were released last spring, while the remaining four, the Sire years (aka major label years), were released just this past September. As with any reissue, it was bolstered with remastering/b-sides/unreleased tracks/demos.
Any band, such as the Replacements, whom I idolize, I enjoy the demos most as it allows a behind-the-scenes at the songs/songwriting process. Of all the Replacements reissues, I found this especially true with “Here Comes a Regular,” off of Tim. While not a demo, but rather an alternate take that lacks a few of the flourishes that the original take has. It reaffirmed why “Here Comes a Regular” was my favorite Tim track and what I like so much about Westerberg. It centers around his usual loser character, but lacks the hope that are typically present in some of his other songs (such as “Kiss Me on the Bus,” “”Within Your Reach,” or “Color Me Impressed” ). Instead of being about lost love, it’s more about lost ambition. As one of my favorite Westerberg lines states, “I used to live at home, now I stay at the house.” It seems to be a reflection on what could have been for Westerberg had the Replacements never taken off. The lone guitar and Westerberg’s cracking vocals simply kills me.
I won’t ramble anymore, so press play already, won’t you ?
Here Comes A Regular (Alternate Take) from Tim