Cover star – Jeff Buckley
1) P94 – Dorian Lynskey’s full page review of ‘One Plus One Is One’ by Badly Drawn Boy. “Gough’s aim appears to be rediscovering the limpid, sunny quality of ‘About A Boy’ and ‘The Hour Of Bewilderbeast’, his Mercury-winning debut. For the most part he succeeds.”
2) P74 – 2 half page adverts. One for Youssou N’Dour’s ‘Egypt’ album, the other for ‘The Ride’ by Los Lobos. There’s a “stellar supporting cast” including Tom Waits and Elvis Costello (my stellar rating for both – very high), alongside Cafe Tacuba and Mitchell Froom. To be honest, for me they would muster a slightly lower stellar rating. Is that harsh?
3) P16 – a whole page dedicated to Andrew Motion describing all the books, films and music he likes in the ‘Word of Mouth’ section. We discover he is currently mostly listening to ‘Bob Dylan Live 1964’, is a big fan of the early “rebarbative and complicated work” of Laurie Anderson, rates the novel ‘The Man Of Feeling’ by Javier Marias (“a beautiful, strange love story about the beginning and end of an affair but nothing about the middle”) and recommends the film ‘The Station Agent’ “about these three people dealing with loneliness by being outsiders, and their developing friendship. A very touching film.”
4) P73 – the second of a 3 page piece on Christine McVie. She recounts her early impressions of the band “…really great and funny guys. Peter Green was a cocky bugger and disarmingly charming. He was the one that really attracted me first. Jeremy Spencer was vulgar and rude but funny. Used to come onstage and do things with a …well, you know,” she wrinkles her nose leaving me to supply the missing word ‘dildo’. “He used to do impersonations of Cliff and Elvis, ‘Viva Las Vegas’ in a gold suit. Mick I was terrified of, so tall, thin and imposing. He gave the impression of being quite haughty but he’s just a puppy really, and I liked John.”
5) P85 –the ‘Jeff Buckley playlist’ by David Hepworth, gathering some of the “key recordings which lit his fuse.” 9 songs get mentioned including Nina Simone’s ‘I Loves You Porgy’ (“…Simone was a particular heroine”), ‘The Way That Young Lovers Do’ by Van Morrison (“the kinship between the headlong rush of ‘Grace’ and the jazzy sweep of ‘Astral Weeks’ is obvious at first hearing”) and ‘How Soon Is Now’ by The Smiths (“When he first heard this on MTV he said ‘It really felt like the steam of teapots and uniforms and public schools, some sort of distant romantic vision of what it meant to be English’.”)
Interesting – the 1st issue to feature a cover-mounted CD. This one introduced me to the twin pleasures of Fountains Of Wayne and Dogs Die In Hot Cars. I used to listen to free CDs back then.
I was delighted to learn that Tom Chaplin of Keane enjoys reading Sylvia Plath’s ‘Ariel’ in the smallest room of the house. “Every time I go to the bog I read one…she probably keeps me regular.” What a lovely thought.
Ross Noble recalls the best heckle he ever had. “I was in London, talking about the North-South divide. This cockney bloke said ‘Of course there ain’t a North-South divide’. I asked why and he said, ‘I’ll tell you why – you got through, you northern cunt!’ It was timed to perfection and I just walked into it. Fair play.”
If you read the Jude Rogers interview elsewhere on this site, she talks about Paul Du Noyer asking her to review four early Brian Eno albums, mostly because he didn’t want someone who’d already written hundreds of words about them. It’s a double-page spread and a great read. She concludes: “As the last track, ‘Spider And I’, fades into silence, you think of how this potent mixture of classic status and contemporary zeal is the key to both Eno and Bowie. They each seized the possibilities of the ’70’s – the opportunities music gave them, the advances of technology, the effects they could create – and ran with them. Replaying these four albums, and reassessing their radiance, it’s only fair that Eno gets just as much of the credit.”
Longer article – Interview with the Legend Of The Fall, Mr. Mark S. Smith – by David Cavanagh. The Fall weren’t featured much in Word so it was a pleasant surprise when this turned up. Nice to see Damon Gough and Mark E Smith reunited in the magazine too. One night, after a few drinks in Manchester, Mark mistakenly got in the passenger seat of Damon’s car thinking he was a taxi driver.