Posts from March 2011

Mar 11

HALE AND PACE – “The Stonk”

Popular123 comments • 8,943 views

#662, 23rd March 1991

When I tell people I’m doing this blog they usually ask me what my favourite ever number one is. I have a stock answer – “Come On Eileen” – which is true often enough to pass muster. They also sometimes ask me what the worst number one ever is. No shortage of candidates, here! We’ve seen some of them already: the mawkish horror of Saint Winifreds, the gross precocity of Little Jimmy, the pathological bonhomie of Mallett. But “The Stonk” holds a special dread for me – it’s the only number one whose badness induces a reflex physical response, a kind of skin-creeping sensation of shame and repulsion. In the age of the Internet, your disgust reflexes can harden pretty easily – I’ve seen goatse and tubgirl and met them with a jaded shrug, but something about this forgotten little record just gets me in the guts.

Mar 11

THE CLASH – “Should I Stay Or Should I Go”

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#661, 9th March 1991

March 1991. I’m coming to the end of five years as a scholarship boy at a top boarding school. It’s been – oh yes – an education. I’ve bullied, I’ve been bullied, I’ve hidden myself away, I’ve learned a lot about institutions and very little about the bits of real life that happen in between them. I’ve fallen for music. I’ve discovered – though I’ve no idea yet how important this will be – that I’m much more comfortable putting words into the world than I am a physical presence. And as such I’ve stumbled into being the nominal editor of the cosy, unrespected, unread school magazine.

What’s in this journal? It has endless reports of a sport only a few thousand people have ever played. It has indifferent landscape photography. It has an anonymous gossip column (which I write) mostly about the editors of its inky, photocopied school rival. Which also has an anonymous gossip column. Which I also write. It has creative writing – oh god, the creative writing. In my first week I’m sent a long poem in iambic tetrameter about the poet’s copping off with an unfortunate girl at a school disco. “She kissed me like a hoover would / A lot of suction. It felt good.” Reader, I published him. And faked a letter of complaint in the next issue.

What has this to do with that band of my fellow poshos, The Clash?

Time Reconsidered as a Helix of MATT SMITH SUCKS

FT2 comments • 385 views

Nu-Who’s flaws elegantly nailed!

Mar 11

Time Reconsidered as a Helix of Semi-Precious Who Eps: #15 THE BRAIN OF MORBIUS

FT20 comments • 776 views


… being a show-by-show TARDIS-esque (ie in effect random) exploration of Doctor Who Soup to Nuts, begun at LJ’s diggerdydum community, and crossposted at FT.

Rider Haggard meets Mary Shelley this time, a well (and deservedly) loved tale from 1974– just two stories on from the last one I watched (LOVEfilm is letting them cluster somewhat). SJS and 4 aka BB battle to stop someone incomparably eeevilTM being fully embodied and wrecking the universe forevHANG ON this is the exact same story as this and this and this really and even kinda this… Except in this story there’s many-roled whospian and magnificent experimental surgeon/renanimator Philip Madoc, plus an all-female cult guarding 1 x Eternal Flame + 1 x Elixir of life. So can BB stop the reunification of Headless Salad of all the Galactic Bodyparts with SPACEHITLER’S SPACEBRAIN? NOW READ ON

Welcome To Violence: Lorna

Do You See + FT/Post a comment • 2,438 views

Recently Al Ewing and Sarah Peploe came into possession of a box set containing “18 uplifting classics” (end quote) from the cinematic oeuvre of Russ Meyer. Heedless of the consequences, they have taken it upon themselves to watch and review each of these in turn on a roughly one-per-week basis. This is part four.

DISCLAIMER DEPT: This is very definitely NOT SAFE FOR WORK. Also, the plot of the film contains rape, so consider this a trigger warning.

Music and leering by H Hopper

Mar 11

MOANING BECOMES ENIGMA: softcore gothick fusion in the age of the tight-looped breakbeat

FT14 comments • 2,073 views

A: where nun is a number
The King James Bible — unlike say Munich choir Capella Antiqua’s 1976 Polydor LP Paschale Mysterium — predates copyright, which is of course a key reason it gets to be at once pervasive, and so richly contradictory in associations. Not only did all the warring breakway sects share the same book, so do many of the proto-pagan warriors round the margins of rock (an avant-garde that’s also a genuine heresy). The late 60s and early 70s was a frightening, turbulent time — intimations of the passing of, if not everything, certainly everything you were used to, and the response to this was combination end-of-days thrilled terror and redemptive/transformative yearning. And the music that reflected this, for a particular social-artistic layer (from Dylan to Miles Davis, from the Kinks to Carla Bley), was an often deliberately lumpy sound-clash of fragments and voicings and modes and traditions, some ancient, some modern, most barely digested, being wildly spewed out all over one another, as a response to the arrival of everything you most desired and eveything you couldn’t bear to imagine, at once.

Mar 11

THE SIMPSONS – “Do The Bartman”

Popular81 comments • 5,112 views

#660, 16th February 1991

Like The Beatles and the Daleks, The Simpsons were a craze before they were a cultural fixed point. “Do The Bartman” is the 1991 equivalent of a moptop wig, part of a deluge of merchandising which might have killed a lesser show off. Instead, the Simpsons books, toys, shampoos, clothes, beer steins, records et al. simply accelerated Bart and Homer’s brand recognition.

Mar 11


Popular120 comments • 7,530 views

#659, 2nd February 1991

“Faceless”. I don’t know who first used this particular epithet against dance music’s pop takeover, but the concept stuck. Facelessness became a stick used to beat the new music with – by suddenly-old DJs, faux-concerned critics, frustrated executives and not a few confused former pop fans. The idea was that club music didn’t create stars, marketable individuals, long-term careers and audience focus points – in the longer term these claims were proved wrong but in the wide-eyed, loose-limbed climate of the early 90s they seemed credible. In fact they didn’t go far enough – what the dance singles filling the charts were doing was turning the existing purpose of a ‘single’ on its head. Singles had long been a promotional medium – an advert for something, be it an album, a tour, a film or TV show, a comedian’s career. Dance tracks, though, weren’t announcing anything – they were instead the echoes of events which had already happened. A rave record’s moment of currency was when it spread through DJ sets, not when it entered the charts. This had been, for a long time, the logic of the holiday hit, “Y Viva Espana” et al – but now extended to encompass an entire subculture. No wonder the old guard were horrified.

Mar 11

Welcome To Violence: Wild Gals Of The Naked West

Do You See + FT/Post a comment • 2,200 views

Recently Al Ewing and Sarah Peploe came into possession of a box set containing “18 uplifting classics” (end quote) from the cinematic oeuvre of Russ Meyer. Heedless of the consequences, they have taken it upon themselves to watch and review each of these in turn on a roughly one-per-week basis. This is part three.

DISCLAIMER DEPT: This is almost certainly NOT SAFE FOR WORK.

good use of font there

Mar 11

Gawd Bless Yer Ma’am!

FT/1 comment • 216 views

As found in the Queen Mum’s record collection.