Cover star – John Peel
1) P98–the final page of an 11 page special on Pink Floyd by Andy Gill. Some truly great ranting by Roger Waters – sample quote:
“And then of course on ‘The Division Bell’ his (Dave Gilmour’s) new wife writes all the bloody lyrics. It’s so ‘Spinal Tap’! And the songs are all fucking awful! ‘Momentary Lapse Of Reason’, I have to say, had one or two redeeming moments to it; but ‘The Division Bell’ – Jesus Christ! Have you ever listened to it? I listened to it once and could not believe how awful it is – the songs are dreadful, all of them. Just awful. An awful, awful record.”
2) P24 – the first page of a 2 page interview with Ricky Gervais by Tom Cox. “I worry about people getting sick of me. I’m proud of the work but I crave anonymity now. I think there’s something wrong with people who want to be celebrities.”
3) P86 – the first page of the afore-mentioned Pink Floyd article. “It’s not clear what goes on in Nick Mason’s offices, but it seems to require a massive boardroom table, a couple of secretarial PAs, and enough space to host a basketball game”.
As a personal aside, I used to work with a social worker who claimed to be (and I believe her – she was very level-headed at work and surely no-one would invent such a random assertion) the person who had given Nick Mason his first ever taste of a Pot Noodle. He tried some but was unimpressed and told her that he would be sticking to cocaine.
4) P117 – 2 half page adverts. The first is for Depeche Mode’s ‘Remixes 81 – 04’ album. If you texted ‘DEPECHE SHOP’ to 80880 you could buy official Depeche Mode ringtones. The second ad is for Aerosmith’s ‘You Gotta Move’ live DVD. Judging by the state of the band on the front cover, I think ‘Amazed We Still Can Move’ may have been more fitting.
5) P122 –1st page of a 2 page review of a Scorsese box set and ‘Goodfellas’ by Christopher Bray. “‘Goodfellas’ moves at such a cracking pace that it takes you a couple of hours to shake free of its blitz and buzz, its whipcrack wonderment at all things wicked. But when you do come round it’s to the realisation that you have just been cheering on a bunch of guys who kill for kicks.”
Interesting – A lovely tribute to the recently-deceased John Peel by Mark Ellen. It contains this prescient observation: “He couldn’t be drawn into a conversation about Jimmy Savile or Simon Bates but he told me unprintable stories about Dave Lee Travis that made my hair curl.”
Mark Gatiss declares an admiration for Rufus Wainwright’s ‘Want One’, Franz Ferdinand and The Hives. His (and, he claims, Joe Orton’s) favourite song of all time is ‘A Day In The Life’ by the ‘Hey Jude’ hit-makers.
Michael Moran reviews an interesting non-fiction book called ‘Comrade Rockstar’. It’ follows the life of an American singer called Dean Reed who became a huge pop star in Russia in the 1960s whilst remaining virtually unknown in his own country.
Robyn Hitchcock has an interesting response to the question ‘iPod or Walkman?’ “You know what? I don’t think you need your record collection on your back every time you leave the house. You’re not allowed to forget who you are these days, or who anyone else is – although we do a good job of trying.”
Mark Hooper updates the strange relationship between Pink Floyd and ‘The Wizard Of Oz’ by drawing attention to the parallels that exist between Blur’s ‘Parklife’ album and Mike Leigh’s ‘Meantime’. “The movie’s opening scene of a jogger ‘going round and round’ in a park, is a hint of what’s to come. Start the film and the LP together and Phil Daniels becomes the central figure in a DIY musical-visual collage.”
Tom Cox reviews the sublime ‘Seinfeld’ (Seasons 1-3), just released on DVD.