. . .
One of the other b-sides of the “Helpless” CD single — “b-side” of course being a misnomer since you didn’t really turn a CD single over like you did with a 45 — was the churning, building “Try Again,” which, unlike “Needle Hits E,” really wouldn’t have fit anywhere on Copper Blue.
At first, with bassist David Barbe bouncing a couple of notes against each other, and drummer Malcom Travis pounding on his toms, “Try Again” didn’t so much move forward as eternally ascend, which fit Mould’s lyric about picking yourself off of the ground.
When the clouds of doubt surround you
And there’s no relief in sight
When nothing you do holds a meaning
But you can’t give up the fight
Mould underscores his quiet vocal with a yaggerdang acoustic guitar, which he then starts smashing harder as the song moves into what I guess is the chorus, as Travis starts galloping.
You think of the good things that might be in store
You try and you try ’til you just can’t try any more
There’s one thing for certain, that nothing is certain
You try and you try and you try, can you try anymore?
You try again
“Try Again” basically alternates between the ascension and the gallop, but as it progresses, the electric guitar overdubs start happening, dominated by a squealing feedbacky guitar which pretty much overshadows everything. Given that the only cover that Sugar recorded in their short existence was a live version of The Who’s “Armenia, City in the Sky” (which, technically was also a cover by The Who, but c’mon), it’s not so far off to see “Try Again” as an homage to Future Certain Song “I Can See For Miles,” though with a completely different lyrical bent.
I wish being happy was something so simple
If all of the doubts that I had every day went away
Then maybe I’d get to that point in my life
If I try and I try and I try, maybe I
You try again
In the end, “Try Again” crashes against itself, with only the feedback surviving, and it strikes me that it would have fit pretty well on Beaster.
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