Word #10

Issue 10

December 2003

Cover star – Paul McCartney

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Word shuffle

1)      P113 – less than glowing full page review of Ryan Adams ‘Rock N Roll’ by Mark Cooper. “Sure, Ryan’s sheer musical facility is as breathtaking as ever but there’s an emotional numbness at the heart of this exercise.”

2)      P58– the final page of a 5 page interview with stone circle botherer Julian Cope. He bills himself as a modern-day shaman and recounts how he’s had shamanistic revelations at the ancient site of Avebury. “At first the blinding flashes were completely dis-orientating. ‘It’s like being anally raped through your third eye,’ he declares, helpfully. ‘It’s a very physical thing.’ Though at first it was debilitating, he now realises that it’s a state he attempts to achieve constantly.”

I don’t imagine Rizzle Kicks’ career path will follow the same trajectory.

3)      P51– final page of a 3 page interview with Andy Parfitt, controller of Radio One. “The universally accepted age-breaks – 16-24, 25-34 – were invented by the Sixties by an advertising agency who wanted to flog soap powder. They are crude divisions and you now have 18 year-olds behaving like 29 year-olds – haven’t bought a CD for 6 months, last film was ‘Die Hard’ – and 29 year-olds behaving like behaving like 18 year-olds – real media magpies, collecting all sorts of music, X-Box at home.”

4)      P117 – a full page review of Suede’s ‘Singles’ compilation by Lynsey Hanley. Lynsey admits that she is a far from neutral reviewer. “I can sincerely state that Suede changed my life: if it hadn’t been for hearing ‘The Drowners’ on Mark Goodier’s ‘Evening Sessions’ on an April evening in 1992, I would never have moved to London and lived the unstintingly glamorous life of a rock writer. Funnily enough, I would probably be doing the sort of thing that most of Suede’s songs seem to about: doing a dull job, living in a council house and going on about my Dad all the time.”

5)      P83 – first page of a 2 page feature on modern jargon. Examples include: “Boiling the ocean – business term to indicate dissipating effort by taking on too big a task”, “Angry fruit cocktail – a bad, flashy website design that uses too many colours” and “Airdog – miniature pooches carried by well-heeled urban matrons, so named because their paws never seem to touch the ground.”

Interesting – Music writer and REM fan David Cavanagh has fallen out of love with the band and thinks it’s time they called it a day. “If there’s no more to create, or if there’s nowhere to go but back, REM must stop. They have already ceased to be unique and are in danger of looking foolish. Let them be different to those bands that go on too long and become an embarrassment.”

Ex SAS chap and professional silhouette, Andy McNab, declares his love for the influence of Bollywood on music “…that Panjabi MC track (‘Mundian To Bach Ke’) was excellent and the album’s stunning.”

I was delighted to learn, in an interview with The Stereophonics’ Kelly Jones, that Stuart Cable (their former drummer) has a mother called Mabel.

There’s also the second part of a special on digital music in which they answer the question ‘How long does it take to download a song?’ The answer? “…around 20 minutes on a 56k modem. The same file would take something like 2 minutes with a broadband/DSL connection.” Imagine that kids – 20 minutes for a 4 minute song – AND you wouldn’t be able to use the phone while you were doing it.

Longer article – Steve Hobbs interviews The League of Gentlemen.

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