Posts from 29th January 2010

Jan 10

BIS WEEK: Which Is The Best Bis?

FT4 comments • 441 views

It has been the question on everyones lips this week, which exactly is the Best Bis? We bring you the final of this hard fought battle below:

(Note: The department of Business & Information and Skills had a hard fought battle to third place, mainly by virtue of also having a Mandy in charge, but David Lammy is no Sci-Fi Steve. The British Interplanetary Society were also in with a shout but keep arguing about whether Pluto is a planet or not.) So over to our adjudicator Magnus Anderson:



BIS (Bank for International Settlements)


That plan of action in full

FT/Post a comment • 375 views

In the late 90s, in Action and Drama, Bis cast themselves as meta-pop activists:

Pop music’s not gonna die / It just has no direction / We need a plan of action

But what was their plan of action? The accompanying track Eurodisco (a worry about pop stagnating into inward-looking genres) had its best mix by Stuart Price — an Erasure-ish version that omits Manda’s vocals. Where has Manda gone? Price went on to be the main producer of Madonna’s 2005 Confessions album and the non-more Eurodisco Abba-sampling “Hung Up”.


1987: What The F___ Is Going On?

FT + Popular73 comments • 4,671 views

This post is an introduction, I suppose, to the next few years of Popular. It was going to be part of a regular post but it grew into its own thing, so I’m putting it up as its own thing.

The late 80s are strange times for the British pop charts. They’re one of those exciting periods – like the mid-50s, like the late-70s – where different musics and different audiences seem to be at war, where the very question of what pop is – the role it plays in peoples’ lives – is up in the air. But unlike those there’s no settled consensus on who to back. You might still find people who aver that faceless dance records ruined the charts – certainly the people who marketed pop and pop radio seemed to have a horror of them at the time. You will also still find people who snarl at reissues in the Top 40 on a kind of principle. You will find some with a kind word to say about the brazenly cheap pop of the time and others who think Pete Waterman is one of British pop culture’s great monsters.