Posts from April 2002

Apr 02

If I can distract you from the current posting spat going on

Pumpkin Publog1 comment • 5,296 views

If I can distract you from the current posting spat going on – I have sad news. Apparently according to Tim Hopkins “The Ring” is no more. Now it would not surprise us if the Ring – a gem of Southwark – was being spruced up. The previous review of it made note of its somewhat threadbare carpet after all. But the removal of the pub name from outside suggestssomething more sinister. The beautifullocal could well be suffering from its status as the nearest pub to Southwark Tube Station, and that being the nearest station to the Tate Modern. We tremble with fear of what will spring up on this corner site – and raise a pint to the Ring, its boxing prints and its exemplary barman.


I Hate Music1 comment • 1,249 views


If you ask anyone it the music business about Napalm Death you will invariably get just the one response. “Lovely chaps” – they will say, almost as if they were the Kray Twins. You would expect them to then extoll upon the amount they love their mother. Instead you tend to get a slight rant along the lines that “you would never believe they were Vegans” and a cheery smile and wave. Not one mention of their music. My kind of conversation generally – the kind that does not mention music.

Indeed music, in its most classical tune, melody, lyrics, abject horror sense is pretty much not what you are going to get from ver Death. Well – unfortunately you still get the abject horror of people strapping on instruments, plugging them into amps and then; well then they’ll grunt like pigs for about thirty seconds. Thrash metal is a misunderstood genre, but I understand it perfectly. It sounds crap because it is crap. Its played by people who want to be hard, edgy and scary – but don’t even eat dairy cos it might hurt a wickle cows teat.

If you have ever looked at the lyric sheet on a Napalm Death album you would be surprised to find out the wide ranging political issues that are being touched upon. You would be even more surprised if you listened to one. It is quite possible to bring up the spectre of the global economic crisis caused by 90% of the worlds wealth being concentrated in 10% of the worlds population – but not if you pronounce every word “unnngh”. Napalm Death are just a bunch of softies pretending to be Metal. Without the leather trousers, cos leather (like Napalm and indeed Death) is murder.

Shut it

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 225 views

Shut it you cockfarmer.


Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 323 views

Hey! Has anyone seen this yet?

Apr 02


FTPost a comment • 2,366 views

Pop-Eye, 28th April 2002

Truly dreadful No.1 hits are rarer than you’d think – leaving out charity singles and Westlife’s perennially useless stool-pop, I can’t think of a really ghastly, what-has-gone-wrong-with-our-species turn-it-off-NOW chart-topper since Oasis‘s “All Around The World”. But mediocre No.1s are another matter, and 2002 has seen a bunch of them. “Hero” followed by “Evergreen” followed by “Unchained Melody” – the top of the UK charts has rarely been drearier. Oasis’ new hit last week didn’t exactly offer a striking alternative – a Xerox of a memory of a trace of long-ago energy. I’m sure their fans, if they care about chart positions at all, rejoiced at last week’s triumph of rock over pop, but I can’t see much of a difference – this week’s chart battle was a lot more significant, and the right side won. Oh, and people with an aversion to the idea of marketing in music should stop reading now.


Apr 02

102 Beats That

New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 262 views

102 Beats That: the last twelve pieces, wrapping up the first leg of this feature. Enjoy them, and come back in June for the second stage. (Oh yeah, also link this feature you bastards! I think it’s good and deserves a wider audience.)

Apr 02


New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 146 views


1. In Finland, two songs followed us up and down the country — Simply Red’s ‘Fairground’ and TLC’s ‘Waterfalls’. I didn’t listen to much soul music then but the contrast was obvious — the humping sweating effort Mick Hucknall needed to sing Simply Red’s most ‘far-out’ song, and the glancing, frictionless melancholy TLC magicked up. The video was perfect too — shimmering, untouchable water-women. That autumn I put CrazySexyCool on my Christmas list.

2. So it became the first R & B record I ever owned, sticking out in my collection like an elegant thumb. I liked it, loved it in places, and could never quite stop the alarm bells ringing in my head whenever the girls got melismatic or went into a ballad. I played it less often than I pretended I did, but one day I heard the Afghan Whigs lumber through ‘Creep’ and a switch was flipped — this was crude and obvious compared to the original, it telegraphed its moves and held too little back. So then I started liking them for what they were, not what they weren’t.

3. Later in Summer ’96 I went to a pub and saw some strippers. I wanted to see what it was like, and I didn’t enjoy it much. It was exploitative I suppose, but not in an active misogynistic sense, more like the kind of all-against-all boredom and contempt you can feel fester in the air of a suburban McDonalds or — as I learned later on — a small office. One of the girls stripped to ‘Red Light Special’, and I don’t think I’ve ever heard it since. It wasn’t a conscious choice, well I thought it wasn’t. But the song fitted the dance too well.

4. ‘No Scrubs’ was the first pre-release MP3 I ever downloaded. It was terrifically exciting. I’ve never quite shaken off that classic indie snob feeling of being into something other people aren’t into — I just rerouted it, wanting to hear the new singles and tell people before anyone ‘out there’ could. I loved the song — the arrogance, the defiance, the hook, the slight roll on the ‘-r’ of ‘passenger side’.

5. I got Fanmail for Christmas too and it disappointed me — now it was TLC’s turn to sound strained, trying to fit into this amoral platinum cyberworld they’d helped create and too often getting the balance wrong, sounding too harsh or too human. ‘Silly Ho’ crunched my skull wonderfully, and ‘Unpretty’ was sweet, but I wasn’t in the mood anymore.

6. So I never heard Lisa ‘Left-Eye’ Lopez’ solo stuff — people told me it was mixed and I thought, maybe I’ll download some sometime. It didn’t happen. She’s dead, in a car crash. The obituaries will mention the songs I’ve mentioned, and the funny personal shit — burning down houses, bankruptcy, all the stuff that made TLC saleable to people who couldn’t notice how lovely the music could be. When I find a good one I’ll link it — meanwhile you can read the one-liners on the ILM thread, and this’ll have to stand as a note of what she and her band meant to me.

(Ooops. I fear the alcohol has killed my brain cells and buggered up my short term memory. Let this be a warning to you all. )

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 491 views

(Ooops. I fear the alcohol has killed my brain cells and buggered up my short term memory. Let this be a warning to you all. )


Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 417 views

Spazmo! I blogged that on the 19th, you mentalist. Do you not even read your own publog?! Anyway, a local has been found, a Very, Very local. Dodgy boozer Shennanigans is right opposite our house. It looks very much so like an estate pub. But never mind eh? The estate agent recommended the Hanover Arms (by the tube) personally, telling us that PROFESSIONALS (like wot he thought Tom and I were har har if only he knew ect ect) drank there. Oh dear.

“Without Me” is sadly not Eminem’s self-obsessed answer to Harry Nilsson’s “Without You”

New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 467 views

“Without Me” is sadly not Eminem’s self-obsessed answer to Harry Nilsson’s “Without You” – though like most Eminem tracks it is stupendously self-obsessed. And like “The Real Slim Shady” this is yet again another attempt to engage in the media discussion on how controversial he is. Except, the version I heard anyway, was easily the least shocking thing he has ever recorded. It had no swearing in it,and no obvious edits in it. Is this some form of irony strewn work where he says he is the most controversial thing since Elvis (possibly correct but an oddly tame boast); nowhere in the song does he threaten to rape or murder anyone. The closest he gets to a personal insult is suggesting that Moby might a bit old. Its a fun song, the chorus is catchy enough and the production follows down the electro line that D12’s last album dabbled in. But I’ll tell you now – its no focus group winner.