Posts from 12th December 2001

12
Dec 01

BORE-BITAL

I Hate MusicPost a comment • 632 views

BORE-BITAL

Male pattern baldness. Has there ever been a better sign of tedium in pop? Alopecia is just not a good sign in any band, lets pick off some examples. The grand Pooh-Bah of baldness would be Brian Eno o’course. He made Music For Airports. Of course the best place to listen to it is an airport. The whooshing jets cause a nice distraction to the ambient twaddle. Sinead O’Connor chips in with female not strictly pattern baldness, and was vilified. Not for saying nasty things about the Pope (like he would care). Instead for turning a dreary slushy Prince ballad into a dreary, slushier advert for polo neck sweaters. Christ baldness is such a bad sign that fucking Michael Stipe felt he had not reached his nadir of lousiness until he went the hole hog and put his pate on view.

So picture this. A band made up of two bald brothers. How dull could they be? How stupendously poor could genetic hair-loss cause the music to get? Why, you would imagine only a personality-free musical form would even vaguely contemplate putting up with light shining off of both performers bonces. Phew – that’d be dance then.

Intelligent dance dahrling – must be intelligent. They’re bald like all mad Professors. The Hartnoll brothers, Orbital, have managed to ply a trade of uninspired blips and blops fuelled on lack of charisma, lack of serious competition and a couple of penlights strapped to their faces. Its not as if they do not warn you though: take their heartfelt look at the effect of tranquillising drugs on their mother : Halcyon…and on…and on….and fucking on for about twenty minutes. They sampled Opus III, that’s like the Beatles covering Dave Dee, Dozy, Mick & Titch (not that this is necessarily a bad idea).

More clues to self tedium. Are We Here? Well point one – we wish you weren’t. Point two – you might as well not be. Orbital are apparently one of the best live techno acts. Scurrying like hamsters behind their big banks of equipment, pretend that they are not just playing the record. And let’s delve further – where does this reputation stem from? Oh yes, a barnstorming set at Glastonbury. Frankly you bung five hippies in front of a pile of burning waxed cups for half an hour and Jo Whiley doing shadow puppets with her withered hand would be “the best fucking gig in the world – mahn”.

Orbital are apparently named after the great early acid raves which took place in random places around the M25 in 1988 – 1989. Well if that were the case why aren’t they called “Rave” or “Party” or “Fucking Freezing Cold Milk Marketing Board Warehouse On The Outskirts Of Tring”. Instead they have decided to name themselves after the road – and not any old fucking road – the M25. When the highlight of an entire album / set is a sample of Suzi Quatro / Belinda Carlisle / the them tune to John Cravens Newsround you are really on to a loser.

Nope Orbital are dull baldness personified. Luckily they have written their own obituary – and fittingly it has no words. They should end up in “The Box”. Preferably six feet under.

Ethan P on Roots Manuva

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Ethan P on Roots Manuva: “Who gives a fuck about “ten pints of bitter?””. Well, not you Ethan, cuz being American you’re not old enough to drink it yet.

(Serious response – the Roots Manuva album is a bit overrated, but under the very funny bluster I don’t get the idea the review’s got much handle on the music. The feeling I always get from Ethan (on the forum and here) is that he wishes those horrid Brits and their horrid dance music inflections would stay away from his lovely hip-hop. Mind you, expecting Roots Manuva to weather an Atlantic crossing well – as his pop press glad-handers do – is as silly as expecting, say, Pulp to suddenly top the Billboard charts.)