100 Greatest Songs of the 90’s #80 Jane’s Addiction – Three Days

Released : 1990

“Three Days was our Stairway to Heaven”

Jane’s Addiction front man Perry Farrell was certainly unafraid enough to bracket the shamanic LA band’s music in with more familiar members of rock’s pantheon, but youth and vitality and a mind expanded by everything you can produce a chemical formula for will run to that sort of hubris, and whilst Ritual De Lo Habitual isn’t always included in that cannon, there’s a persuasive argument it should be.

Ritual..was an astonishing record, one that had a spiritual allure combined with a latent eroticism, both wrapped in Farrell’s perceptive kind of femininity. For a man fronting a band with so much visceral power, the singer had a distinct air of androgyny and had also become fascinated at the time by Santeria, an exotic hybrid of African Yoruba beliefs melded with Catholicism. It’s imagery partially informed the album’s sleeve art – and the story behind Three Days provided the rest.

Farrell had he claimed saved his best songs for the band’s second album, with a specific intent to avoid any critical accusations of burnout. Whilst Ritual..is now commonly remembered via the street funk of Been Caught Stealing, Three Days and it’s seemingly never-ending contortions match those of the chemical fueled, marathon threesome the singer participated in which was the song’s inspiration. He and guitarist Dave Navarro jammed part after part together to create an undulating song-cycle before laying the whole thing down in one studio take; Navarro’s stratospheric guitar solo fused prog and power unfettered by notions of structure, charting a dream which, even though three decades have elapsed, still has all the latent intrigue of an all consuming spell.