Posts from 19th October 2000

19
Oct 00

PULP – “The Night That Minnie Tymperly Died”

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PULP – “The Night That Minnie Tymperly Died” (live MP3)

Jarvis Cocker’s songs spell out patterns of behaviour, return time and again to themes which streak through his writing like mold in cheese. Latterly, exhaustion and redemption: always, though, women. Cocker obsesses over women, particularly their youth, their passion, their burning potential. If there’s one thing that he can’t escape from as a songwriter, it’s the tragedy of young, perfect girls becoming old and defeated. Luscious, precocious Susan in “Inside Susan”; Deborah in “Disco 2000”; the fallen heroines of “Sylvia” and “Live Bed Show”; even the love object in “This Is Hardcore” – desire for Pulp is horribly entwined with disappointment and decay.

It’s a fucked-up attitude but it makes for some blistering pop. And it’s hardly a surprise when beautiful Minnie Tymperly ends up dead. And it shouldn’t be a surprise, too, that the song – a grand, wonderful glam ballad – balances so strangely between anguish and celebration. Not for Minnie the kitchen sink compromises if a traditional Cocker heroine: she goes out on a high note, impossibly desirable. “The world wants to sleep with you tonight”, sighs the chorus.

Yes, there’s something creepy about the song and about how much Cocker throws himself into it. But there’s something very powerful here too – a murder ballad, if you like, that puts its spotlight squarely on the victim, not the crime. “The Night That Minnie Tymperly Died” belies its title, leaving us with a snapshot of someone fiercely alive, and only Cocker’s moaned regret to remind us that this story can’t end happily. But then in Jarvis Country it never could.

(This song is apparently a work in progress. It’ll probably get released and turn out to be about a car.)

Is he hot or not?

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Is he hot or not?

Julie London, RIP

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Julie London, RIP

The mark of a good review

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The mark of a good review is that it forces me to read to the end even when I have no wish whatsoever to hear the album. For example: motion’s review of Photek’s Solaris – balanced, intriguing, finely written. Motion, in fact, are rapidly turning into the Wire you can actually read.

Why I don’t want to be a ‘real’ rock critic, part million

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Why I don’t want to be a ‘real’ rock critic, part million: via catherine.

Oh, and NME.com has redesigned and now looks….garish. But, good news! You need no longer wade through non-pieces on arsey Coldplay dates when you visit, for the site now includes subsite nmepop.com. Ra ra. There are actually loads of subsites – on classic rock, hip-hop, indie, etc., although currently some of them seem a bit slim on content.

Quick Round-Up

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Quick Round-Up of what’s new and good on vaguely affiliated sites, since I’m probably going to be too a) busy b) glum c) banjaxed by server arse to do much today.

– Fred reviews the new Johnny Cash album.: I think it’s one of Fred’s best reviews. And the album might be good too: you need to hear Cash’s version of “I See A Darkness”, that I do know.
Josh talks about music and emotion: an interesting discussion which would be more so if I knew more Mogwai. Possibly, anyway, though Mogwai leaves me inert, and not in the desirable way Josh is on about either.
Tim talks about Green Velvet and house music, and makes it all sound extremely tasty.
– Ally hasn’t talked about music much this week, but this is probably my favourite recent blog entry anyhow. And yes, after hearing the same live tracks as her I am very keen to hear the Pulp album, too. More on that later should I find the time.
– Tim lays into Creation Records.

All these people deserve your attention, I think. I only wish some of them would write the odd Freaky Trigger article, too….

Some good news to start your day:

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Some good news to start your day: Zack leaves Rage Against The Machine. (via Us Vs Them, whose commentary on it says it all, really.)