Iggy Pop doesn’t glamorize the life of a junkie, which he himself once was, on “Strung Out Johnny,” the second pre-release track from his new, Andrew Watt-produced album, Every Loser. As previously reported, the project is due Jan. 6 on Watt’s Gold Tooth label through Atlantic.
Sonically, the strident “Strung Out Johnny” has more in common with New Order and the Killers than Pop’s hard-rocking Stooges, thanks to its Peter Hook-style high bass line, vintage-sounding synth counter-melody, and occasional auto-tuned vocal. Pop chronicles his struggle to avoid temptation, singing, “Come on now, fix me up / Love becomes compulsive / It’s wiser to say no / God made me a junkie / But Satan told me so.”
Later, he details the quick leap from experimentation to addiction: “First time you do it with a friend / Second time you do it in a bed / Third time you can’t get enough / And a life gets all fucked up.” Pop’s heroin addiction was a factor in the early ’70s demise of the Stooges, and he struggled to overcome the issue until more than a decade later, with the help of friend and collaborator David Bowie.
The artist recently announced a handful of 2023 European tour dates opening for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and will also play March 10 at the Salt Shed in Chicago and an Aug. 4 event in Portlaw, Ireland, alongside Jamie xx and Caribou, among others. First up is a previously announced headlining appearance at the first Destination Chaos festival in the Dominican Republic on Feb. 2.
Pop’s only other North American shows are newly confirmed dates on April 20 at Los Angeles’ Regent Theater, April 22 in San Francisco, April 27 at Los Angeles’ Hollywood Palladium, and April 29 in Las Vegas. He will be backed on this run by Watt, Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith, and Guns N’ Roses bassist Duff McKagan, all of whom played on Every Loser.