preliminairesAt this stage of his storied life he’s probably entitled to put out any damn thing he likes, but that doesn’t mean glued-on Stooges fans have to buy it. In fact why “Preliminaires” is billed as an Iggy record is beyond me. It should have come out under Jim Osterberg’s name.

Truth be told (and it has been related here in the past), Iggy’s solo career is littered with as many train wrecks as near triumphs. There’s a shortage of quality control running through the back catalogue that point to his own defiance and independence being an immovable roadblock to better work. Even a deaf monkey with ear plugs could’ve told him “The Weirdness” stank.

Of course “Preliminaires” isn’t “The Weirdness” – parts of it are in French for starters – and nor is it as low key or introspective as the haunting (and boring) semi-spoken word “Avenue B.” This one’s a weird mix of rag-time jazz (the hyped lead-off track “King of the Dogs”), electro-pop and balladry that was worked up as a soundtrack for a film about a French novelist mist of us won’t read. There’s a track that sounds like something from “The Idiot” – a lite version – and another sparse blues tune.

It’s produced well-enough but it’s a worry when the Iggster can’t be bothered to be in the same studio as the musicians he’s supposed to be working with. How far away from the rest of America is Florida anyway and wouldn’t his missus’ past employment with an airline entitle him to a cheap fare?

He might be sick of playing with bone-headed guitarists but at least they create enough racket to make Iggy sound interested.

Rob Younger once said that the thing that pissed off Australian fans the most when Ig toured here for the first time was that his then-band weren’t the Stooges. That’s probably true but they didn’t play music as bland as this either.