End Of The Road festival 2019 – Day Two – Friday 31th August 2018

 

The last day of the month of August is generally a bit depressing at it means the end of summertime, no more sunny weather and back to work/school. The best remedy is to be at End of the Road…and attend 10 gigs as I did! So without further due, here you go for Day Two review.

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My first concert was under a beautiful sun at The Woods Stage with Du Blonde, the avatar name chosen by Beth Jeans Hougton. I had not seen her since 2015 for my first edition of the festival and she was as powerful and subtle as I remember her last time. She is probably not the most smiling person ever and her choice of a Star Trek tee-shirt was too geeky to be true but her music is a real delicacy. One can even feel the spirit of the great David Bowie sometimes. She is working on the finishing touches of her new record which should be released early 2019 so I am quite sure this is not the last time she will be mentioned here.

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I then attended two gigs in a row at my beloved Garden Stage, one of my favourite places on Earth. The first one was from the North Caroline band Hiss Golden Messenger, basically the sole project of M.C. Taylor. I have always enjoyed their records as they mix Americana music with a certain depth. They are a bit different live as they are more in the country rock tradition. In other words, I had a good time but I was expecting a bit more.

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Quite the opposite with This Is The Kit, the band lead by English singer and songwriter Kate Stables. I also discovered this band at End Of The Road 2015 with a fantastic concert at the Tipi tent. Since then, they have been one of my favourite current bands and this was the fourth time I was catching them live. It was again beautiful and probably the best gig of theirs I came to see. Kate was alternating as usual between her banjo and her nice green guitar with a strength and emotion I was not expecting. I also attended a signing session a few hours later in the day at the Rough Trade store tent and we had a nice conversation in English… and French as Kate has been living in Paris for thirteen years now.

Completely different genre of music with Tirzah, a young Londoner female artist, working in the design world by day and singing her great melodies by night. Her music is not that different from Leila, for those who remember this very original female artist who released a few personal kind of trip-hop records at the end of the 90’s and start of the 00’s. Tirzah was on stage in a minimalist configuration with her friend and collaborator Mica Levi and another excellent male musician playing… a bit of everything. Go and discover her debut album, which was part of our August record of the month selection.

Back to the Woods stage for the concert of the legendary Josh T. Pearson, former leader of the cult Texas band Lift To Experience. Josh T. Pearson released in April his second solo record “The Straight Hits!, with all tracks having the word “straight” in their title. I already told the story of this incredible artist and performer as part of my review of his 2011 gig at the Café de la Danse in Paris. With a completely different look and haircut and also a quite different style of songs, Josh T. Pearson looks and sounds like a different artist…but beware the beast is still here, as experienced by this fantastic live performance. He is an artist not to be missed, alternating between very intense numbers…and a few dick jokes as well (I did not get them all I must confess!). I also had a 5-minute conversation with the great man the following day as part of a signing session, once again talking about Paris as he used to live there a couple of years before going back to Texas.

 

Next step was back at the Tipi tent to see the Polish experimental guitar and clarinet duo of Zimpel & Ziolek. Although their names sound more like a kids’ cartoon, their music is quite fascinating. Exactly the kind of thing I like about this festival: discovering new artists and it looks I was not the only one as the whole audience was delighted. I then attended around thirty minutes of the Brooklyn band Big Thief at the Garden stage but I must say I was quite disappointed. All reviews of their latest records have been so positive that I was expecting to find a life-changing band but I only attended a quite good indie band. Maybe I was not in the mood… On the other side, I was not really expecting anything of The Orielles, a young UK band, but they were really excellent under the Tops stage tent. They are a two-female and one-male trio…and are actually all very young! Their indie rock sound will not start a revolution but I must say they have an impressive musicianship and energy.

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However, the greatest moment of the day and of the festival for me was Jeff Tweedy‘s gig at the Garden Stage. The show of the Wilco leader was not necessarily that different from that I saw at the start of the year at the Barbican but it was probably more intimate. Those reading regularly my reviews probably know how I cherish this amazing artist who has produced or created amongst the most beautiful songs of our recent years, first with his band Wilco but also with other collaborations or solo. He was just playing with his acoustic, which shows how strong these songs are. I also knew he was a very funny person and I must say the concert made it a real fact. When an audience member told him “You’re beautiful”, he replied “I’m beautiful? You’re sick!”. Discover this beautiful man, his beautiful band, his beautiful records and his beautiful songs if not done yet.

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I still had a bit of energy left so I decided to attend Protomartyr‘s concert in the warmth of the Tops Stage. …and I must confess there was not better to end a lovely day than with this Detroit band, lead by the fascinating Joe Casey. You would not believe this man in a cheap suit and with the haircut of an insurance clerk is one of the best current punk rock singers of our current times but he is! Their sound is also very dense and not that different from what a mix of Joy Division with Living Colour would be. Not sure if it means anything to anyone but they are really good on stage!

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So here it is for Day Two. I did not see Daniel Blumberg, The Weather Station, Lucy Dacus, The Low Anthem, Fat White Family or again St. Vincent although they were all on my list but a man has to do difficult choices sometimes. Stay posted for Day Three!

 

End of the Road festival 2019 – Day One – Thursday 30th August 2018

 

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That time of the year again… and what a magical and great moment that was. Back for the 4th year in the beautiful scenery of the Larmer Tree Park in Dorset, surrounded by excellent musicians, great audience of people actually here to listen to and enjoy music, birds (peacocks, macaws) but more than anything a friendly and peaceful atmosphere which makes this festival the best of them all (sold out again this year  – 16,000 tickets).

On top of it, the weather was also very enjoyable this year, meaning my traditional rain cape stayed in the bag whereas I was happy listening to awesome bands dressed in a tee-shirt and Converse shoes!

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As initiated in 2016, the festival started on Thursday evening. This was a good warm-up for your beloved reviewer as I started my 30-gig marathon with three excellent concerts that night.

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My first concert of the festival took place under the friendly Tipi Tent stage with a discovery. Laura Misch is a young South-East Londoner female musician who plays on her own…and with her saxophone and machines on stage. It meant sometimes a few software errors but mainly a mixture of beautiful sounds. She is very talented and her music sounds like a very personal R’n’B with an indie rock mindset. Not sure if it makes sense but I personally enjoyed it a lot.
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I then went to the main stage of the festival (the Woods Stage) to catch two very different bands. The first one is called Shopping and can be defined as a queer trio playing post punk music influenced by great names such as ESG or Gang Of Four. I had found their latest Edwyn Collins-produced album “The Official Body” ok but live this London band brings something else. Their drummer has a good sense of humor as well and I was proud to understand both Fanta-sy and Sex Cymbal jokes!

 

 

The headliner of the day were my beloved Yo La Tengo. This was my seventh YLT gig and there were as good as earlier in the year when I caught them in London. This American trio could be considered veterans of the indie rock scene but really they get better with age. They are now in a place where they can basically decide which kind of setlist they want to play and which type of concert one could attend. That night was quite focused on their latest quiet sounding “There is a riot going on‘” LP but they also played a few classics, alternating cool Velvet Underground influenced songs, repetitive loops but also ferocious punk rock numbers. Fantastic…as usual.

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Stay posted for Day Two!

 

 

August 2018 Album of the month: White Denim “Performance”

A bit late this month but this is mainly due to the amazing quantity and quality of records and also the late release of many of them on the last day of the month (31st of August). Choosing the seven albums below has not been an easy task but I guess these are the rules of the game so without further due, here is our album of the month!

Album of the month: White Denim“Performance” – Rock – This is another great album from the Austin, Texas, band and actually their seventh. If you have never heard of them, this is not too late to do so and this record is probably one of their most melody-oriented ones. In reality, one must say that all their albums are excellent for those who like rock music played with a sense of jazz spirit, i.e. inspiration in a very tight framework. Their records are also basically done to play these songs live. I recently caught them on stage as part of the great End of the Road festival (complete review available soon) and they were amazing. Enjoy a pure rock feeling!

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  • Runner-up: Anna Calvi “Hunter” – Pop Rock – Anna Calvi is probably one of the best guitarists of the current era and she also has an amazing voice. I thought until now that her records were missing…something and it looks she really found what she wanted to say with this new one. Much focused on the gender topic she did not dare to put upfront until now and with a beautiful production, this is her best record. I was lucky to catch her live recently at Rough Trade East and we had a few words…about living in Strasbourg!

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  • Also recommended:
    • The Beths “Future Me Hates Me” – Pop Rock – Great summer pop from this Auckland, New Zealand, band
    • Tirzah – “Devotion” – Lo fi Trip Hop – Beautiful sounds and gorgeous melodies from this young London woman who considers music as a hobby.
    • Oh Sees “Smote Reverser” – Garage Rock – A bit like Ty Segall (cf. July records of the month), John Dwyer is never happier than when he releases records or plays live with his beloved Oh Sees.
    • Interpol “Marauder” – NY gloomy rock – Let’s not forget to cherish these guys who, with The Strokes and The White Stripes, saved rock’n’roll at the start of the 00’s. They are back with their 6th LP and this is one of their best.
    • The Lemon Twigs  “Go To School” – Monkey business – The hugely talented and young D’addario brothers are back with their second proper album. Why makes things simple when you can make a concept record about a monkey boy, really?

July 2018 Album of the month: Bodega “Endless Scroll”

To my millions of readers: the blog is more alive than ever! For those surprised by the lower frequency in recent posts, please note this is mainly due to its editor attending lots of gigs (cf. gigs page), to a very warm London summer…and moreover to the full support shown by the editing team to Les Bleus during the FIFA World Cup!

Back to business then and to the July Album of the month. No real big names this time, which was also great as I discovered many new names and exciting music. For the first time since the start of this review, my album of the month is identical to that of Rough Trade stores.

Album of the month: Bodega – “Endless Scroll” – Garage Rock – I know I can be obsessed and passionate about garage rock and its repetitive mantra sounds where a few may only hear boring repetitive guitar music. I am pretty sure it will not be so this time as Bodega has released a very exciting record, mixing up garage sounds with pure melodically songs. They are a female/male 5-member band from New York and their debut record is produced by Austin Brown of the great Parquet Courts. This is the kind of record one can already dearly love and be excited about after hearing the first thirty seconds of the first track.

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  • Runner-up: Dirty Projectors “Camp Lit Prose” – Pop Rock – David Longstreth and his band Dirty Projectors have always been of the most singular ones, as shown when they collaborated with Björk a few years ago. However, last year’s self titled break-up album was a bit too edgy and difficult to like. It looks David is happy and in love again and the first consequence has been a frenzy energy put in this new buoyant album.
  • Also recommended:
    • 77:78  “Jellies” – Pop Rock – Summer music from former members of The Bees
    • Rayland Baxter – “Wide Awake” – Pop Rock – 70’s sounding pop ; I defy anyone not to have a smile on their face while listening to this record
    • Ty Segall and White Fence “Joy” – Garage Rock – Another collaboration from the hardest working man in garage rock after his brilliant “Freedom’s Goblin” LP earlier in the year
    • Nathan Salsburg “Third” – Acoustic guitar – Beautiful and quiet music from a man amongst animals (cf. this record’s cover)
    • Underworld & Iggy Pop  “Teatime Dub Encounters” – Technoish Spoken words – The title says it all! A 4-track EP collaboration which works better than expected.
  • Lest we forget: album of the previous month – John Coltrane – “Both Directions At Once

June 2018 Album of the month: John Coltrane “Both Directions At Once”

June is traditionally one of the best months of the year in terms of releases and this year was no exception with a bunch of amazing records. Let’s start with the liveliest album of them all from a man who passed away fifty-one years ago…Album of the month: John Coltrane – “Both Directions At Once” – Jazz – Stating that John Coltrane plays jazz music is a bit like saying Roger Federer plays tennis or Zinedine Zidane football; we all know this is more than this. John Coltrane is probably the best musician ever and I can only see Jimi Hendrix, Miles Davis or again John Bonham to potentially compete with such an incredible talent…but same thing here, the maestro’s aficionados know that his musical skills were just a means to reach out something greater, for lack of a better word. This “new” album is a lost session from March 1963 at a moment when the jazz master was leading his legendary quartet: Jim Garrison on bass, McToy Tyner on piano and the amazing Elvin Jones on drums. This session had weirdly disappeared for ages and it was actually securely held at John Coltrane’s ex-wife and descendants’ house. I was just expecting another not-very-interesting lost session..but not such a shock and emotion. The quality of the music is incredible and I must say being overwhelmed while listening to it with the headphones. You will not find a more lively album… from a guy who actually died the year before I was born. Buy in vinyl and cherish!Image result for john coltrane both directions at once vinyl

  • Runner-up: Kanye West “Ye” – Hip Hop – Ok, I admit mentioning to a friend of mine that Kanye’s best days were behind him after first listening to this 7-track album. How wrong I was… The more I listened to it, the more I felt the presence of an old-school suffering  man and artist showing his wounds to the world…in a beautiful musical context. I will repeat it again and again for those who like shortcuts: Kanye the public figure does not equal Kanye the artist. A fantastic record which would have been record of the month anytime…but for the month when a new John Coltrane record is released. Kanye West also recently played and/or produced four other mini-albums from Pusha-T, Kid Cudi, Nas and Teyana Taylor. They are all excellent and I suggest you create THE playlist of the summer with all these tracks.
  • Also recommended:
    • Father John Misty  “God’s Favourite Customer” – Pop Rock – Another indispensable album from our favourite bearded American singer. Another album of the year for 2018? Only time will tell…
    • Damso – “Lithopédion” – Belgian Rap – A new step ahead for today’s most talented French-speaking rapper. Crude and tough lyrics but isn’t it what life is today?
    • Nine Inch Nails“Bad Witch” – Pop Rock – Another excellent mini-album from Trent Renznor and associates.
    • Kamasi Washington “Heaven And Earth” – Jazz Odyssey – The title says it all; 2hours 30minutes of space travel.
    • Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever  “Hope Downs” – Pop Rock – Debut album from thid young Aussie band, perpetuating musical excellence down under
  • Lest we forget: album of the previous month – Gaz Coombes – “World’s Strongest Man

My 80’s were…different: The The (Royal Albert Hall, 5th June 2018) and Microdisney (Barbican, 9th June 2018)

 

There is nothing more annoying that associating a decade with the bad music which was played then. I must say that apart from the 60’s, there is a tendency to match the 70’s, 80’s or 90’s with the worst music that was available at that time. The 80’s are probably the worst example of what I am trying to explain and so-called 80’s retro parties are generally a nightmare because the music that is played was and still is the enemy. Even worse I must say in my own country as one has to deal with all French awful “variété” songs of the time.

Anyway, this introduction was only meant to emphasize that the two bands I will describe in this review were indeed originally from the 80’s but could have been from any period thanks to the excellence of their sounds and production but also the witness and intelligence of the words. A few common things here as well as both bands had ceased to exist for a long time and had not played live for ages.

  • The The, Royal Albert Hall, 5th June 2018

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Basically the sole project of Matt Johson, The The made extremely good music in the late 80’s and early 90’s. The four records released from 1983 to 1993 are amongst the best of all times from any band, period: “Soul Mining“, “Infected“, “Mind Bomb” and “Dusk“. Their music was a mix of indie rock and ethnical rhythms, confirmed by the impressive list of great collaborators who played on these tracks (Jools Holland, Zeke Manyika or again Johnny Marr). In terms of words, Matt Johnson is probably one of the best British writers and always mixed personal topics with bigger political concepts.

Family issues (losses mainly) and a certain lack of faith in the music industry and its rules made him vanished little by little. Their last gig was in 2002 and personally I had only caught them live twice in Paris in 1989 and 1993. The recent loss of his other brother made Matt Johnson realise that being on stage was the best he could do, hence this mini tour with three dates in London, the first one being held at the Royal Albert Hall.

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The band were sharp on stage and all dressed in black as expected if I may. The The’s songs have not aged at all: the musicianship was extraordinary on stage and Matt’s voice even better than in my memory. The real impressive treat though lied in the quality of the lyrics with themes that are today even more relevant that they used to be (religious wars, gap between the poor and the rich, etc…). A fantastic band which deserves a second life.

Please click for the impressive setlist or The Guardian’s review.

  • Microdisney, Barbican, 9th June 2018

Originally from Cork, Ireland, Microdisney is to me one of the most hidden treasures of all times and I did not hesitate to put them in my 100 favourite artists of all times. Their four records released from 1983 to 1988 are also amongst the best series ever done, mixing a kind of Beach Boys / Country & Western sensitivity (created by Sean O’Hagan) with extremely sharp and bitter lyrics (sung and written by Cathal Coughlan). The late DJ John Peel described them at best when he mentioned that their music was an iron fist in a velvet glove.

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A bit like for The The, the band did not get the success they deserved or were expecting and they called it quit in 1988. Their two leaders stayed in the music business, Cathal Coughlan with the very good Fatima Mansions and Sean O’Hagan with the great High Llamas but one could not feel that their career could have been huge if…

Thanks to a local initiative celebrating the best Irish music and records ever made, Microdisney were requested to play for two nights only (one in Dublin and the other one at the London Barbican)…and they accepted! More precisely, the overall idea was to play their 1985 masterpiece “The Clock Comes Down The Stairs” in its entirety.

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Quite an emotive evening then for your reviewer as my only Microdisney gig was in 1987 at the now defunct Astoria on Charing Cross Road. The least one could say was that the band did not disappoint and were as good as they could be. Cathal Coughlan’s voice in particular remains for me one of the most beautiful male voices ever and Sean O’Hagan musicianship and leadership of the band was truly exceptional. After playing the ten songs of the album, the band performed a second set of “classics” amongst their repertoire. These songs were as good as the others and the gig was as magical as I hoped. The fact that it was a one-time event made it even stronger… If you want to discover Microdisney, there are three records on streaming platforms (a compilation and their first two records) so get there!

Please click for the setlist and for the Dublin gig which occurred a few days earlier.

All Points East presents… the greatest bands in the world! Victoria Park, 2nd and 3rd June, 2018

 

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Last week was held in the very nice Mile End neighbourhood and more precisely in Victoria Park the second week-end of the new All Points East Festival. Actually, the previous week-end was the actual official festival with names such as The XX, Bjork or again LCD Soundsytem whereas the gigs I went to were part of something called “All Points East presents…”. Well, whatever the name, the real treat was in the line-up as basically I could find many of my current or past musical obsessions.

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So, for once, nothing particularly new to write again about these great bands or artists but just the pleasure in sharing a few photos of these two days: This Is The Kit, Spoon, Flyte, The War On Drugs, The National, Courtney Barnett, Patti Smith, St. Vincent and Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds. My camera was also as overwhelmed as I was by such a line-up as its lens stopped working after a certain stage…

Stay connected as next time, I will write about two amazing bands I had not seen live for decades..

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May 2018 Album of the month: Gaz Coombes “World’s Strongest Man”

Album of the month: Gaz Coombes“World’s Strongest Man” – Pop Rock – Although very popular at least in their own country, Supergrass is to me an underrated band, especially regarding their late albums. This is their original singer’s 3rd LP and the least one can mention is that this is getting better with each release. These songs do not necessarily sound special but there is an emotion in the words and melodies which make them overwhelming. I must say being a particular fan of non-macho songwriters trying to find a meaning of their lives in our current times. That was also to me the recurring them of my 2017 album of the year with Father John Misty and at the end of the day aren’t we all looking for such a thing?
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I was also lucky to recently attend a Rough Trade showcase for the release of that album and Gaz Coombes was magnificent on stage that day. Album of the month…. and of the year so far.

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  • Runner-up: Courtney Barnett “Tell Me How You Really Feel” – Pop Rock – Our favourite Aussie female singer is back with her proper second album. Probably less immediate than her previous releases, this is also deeper in terms of words and more in phase with the complicated life women face in their late 20’s / early 30’s. Amazing also how one could find acquaintances with Liz Phair‘s “Exile to Guyville” which has just been reissued for a 25-year edition.
  • Also recommended:
    • Eleanor Friedberger “Rebound” – Pop Rock – Another beautiful album from the former Fiery Furnaces singer
    • Arctic Monkeys – “Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino” – Pop Rock – The Sheffield band gets sentimental on this heavily Bowie-Gainsbourg influenced record
    • Slow Mass “On Watch” – Pop Rock – Is it hardcore? Is it pop? Or is it simply real powerful music?
    • Stephen Malkmus “Sparkle Hard” – Pop Rock – Now with more solo albums than Pavement’s in his career, he remains though a relevant force.
    • Kamaal Williams  “The Return” – Soul Jazz – A welcome different musical style in this very indie pop selection… 
  • Lest we forget: album of the previous month – Eels – “The Deconstruction

 

April 2018 Album of the month: Eels “The Deconstruction”

We are already reaching the end of one third of the year and as usual no time for laziness or deception regarding this monthly review (which by the way has millions of followers now…)

Album of the month: Eels“The Deconstruction” – Pop Rock – I am generally always happy, excited but also scared of being disappointed when one of my all time favourites is back with a new album, as was so with Eels this month. For those not that familiar with this band, Eels is the brainchild of Mark Everett, a.k.a. E. After starting their career with a hit (“Novocaine for the Soul“) in 1996, they have been releasing albums on a regular basis. All these records are more than recommended really and to me Mark Everett’s clear inspiration can be found in Paul McCartney‘s work as a solo artist. Just imagine a more cynical McCartney with a rougher voice and you are not far from Eels’ style of music. The man is quite multi-talented either as a writer (cf. my review of his autobiography) or as an actor. He recently appeared in a few episodes of the great Judd Apatow “Love” series and after getting married, having a baby…and getting divorced again , here he is full of energy after a four-year break for our listening pleasure.

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  • Runner-up: Unknown Mortal Orchestra “Sex & Food” – Pop Rock – What a nice record name! A bit like for Eels, this band could actually bear the name of its leader, Ruban Nielson from New Zealand. This is their fourth album and more than ever the mix of fresh melodies and of a retro and polished production makes it very different from other current releases. To discover if not yet done.
  • Also recommended:
    • Goat Girl “Goat Girl” – Pop Rock – Exciting debut album from this American-sounding all female UK band.
    • Manic Street Preachers – “Resistance Is Futile” – Pop Rock – Very dignified 13th (!) album from the best Welsh rock’n’roll band ever.
    • Drinks “Hippo Lite” – Pop Rock – Second excellent collaboration between Cate Le Bon from Wales and Tim Presley from the USA. Recorded in Saint Hyppolyte du Fort in France, hence the title…
    • Forth Wanderers“Forth Wanderers” – Indie Pop – Debut album signed by Sub Pop. There is something sounding like classical indie pop about this album.
    • Josh T.Pearson  “The Straight Hits!” – Pop Rock – No more beard nor long and slow depressing songs from the Lift to Experience leader, only straight hits!
  • Lest we forget: album of the previous month – Buffalo Tom – “Quiet And Peace

 

Better to burn out than fade away: a parallel between Morrissey and New Musical Express

As written by the great Neil Young and reproduced by Kurt Cobain in his suicide note, this aphorism is probably one of the most famous in the world of rock music. I thought it was quite relevant to two recent events I experienced and which were very much connected with my discovering and love of music in my teenage years.

New Musical Express (nickname NME) was without any question the music Bible for many youngsters from the early 70’s to the mid 90’s. This weekly magazine reached its peak during the punk, post-punk and brit-pop years and at one stage its publication figures were in the hundreds of thousands. Numbers are not all there is to it though and more important in an age when internet was not even a concept, I was one of many people waiting with eagerness to receive (quite late) the latest music news, articles about my idols or new bands to discover. My favourite section was the records review and the straight-to-the-point way of writing of its journalists has remained a fantastic inspiration. I guess it also made me what I am and it gave me in particular a fascination for British music, which was not complicated for a teenager living in France. We all know the joke: “French rock music is the equivalent of British red wine…”.

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Thanks to one of my best high school mates, I subscribed in November ’85 and remained a faithful reader until last month, when NME editing group concluded that the printing version was not sustainable anymore. A real relief I must say as nothing is more painful than watching something you cherished decline at such a point that you feel more embarrassment than anything else. NME ended his first life in 2015 to become a weekly free magazine but the spirit was totally gone and I am sure I was not the only one to be ashamed to see such a cheap publication still bearing the name of my previous beloved magazine.

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Although there were probably more famous covers, the issue that made what I am today was the second one I received by post, dated 30/11/85 and including the journalists’ vote of the 100 greatest albums ever made. Click here to review this amazing list. R.I.P. NME.

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The parallel with Morrissey is an obvious one. NME were the first magazine to champion The Smiths when they appeared on the musical scene of the early 80’s and Morrissey used to write chronicles in the newspaper earlier in the 70’s about his beloved New York Dolls for instance. At one stage, when he went through his first solo years of the late 80’s and early 90’s, there was a joke to rebaptise the NME New Morrissey Express so strong was his presence in the magazine.

..and the question therefore is: should Morrissey also realise that he lost his flame a few year ago and that one only follows him because one knows the beauty and power there used to be in his songs…many years ago. His latest albums are not necessarily bad and there are still a few interesting things to discover here and there but no real subtlety and charm anymore. The way he keeps on hammering his hate of the Royal family or meat eaters for instance is a bit pathetic and closed to the old racist uncle you have to meet at a family wedding ceremony. Interesting to see also how Johnny Marr aged gracefully physically and mentally-speaking, which is not really something one could say about Morrissey.

I went (probably for the last time ever) to see him live at the Royal Albert Hall in March 2018. I must admit the show was quite pleasant although really lacking subtlety. Morrissey’s physical appearance is also a bit unpleasant and one sometimes has the impression to see a sort of “Morrissey in Vegas” show. If I were you, Mister Stephen Patrick Morrissey, I would follow the example of NME and start to think about stopping making music. The man has a real writing talent by the way so would it be the right moment to start another career?