14
Mar 06

Around The World in 80 Lousy Tunes, Day 61: Stanley

I Hate MusicPost a comment • 425 views

You would think I would be used to traveling by boat after the last few months, but this trip felt like an age had passed since I left Japan. The boat was a piece of junk, which in retrospect might have been better if it was an entire junk. But the Manic Street Preachers put me off junk a long time ago, and I already steered clear of Motown. As such rocking up in Hong Kong was a relief.

I avoid all the gardens and briefly considered going to Mongkok for a potential One Night In Bangkok joke. But as it was the skyscrapers on Hong Kong island were distracting me. I kept thinking of members of minor toytown techno bands traveling in the lifts to the top of – say – the Mitsubishi Building and flinging themselves off. Trip To Trumpton? Trip to the floor.

Instead I decided to travel to the south of the island for a relaxing evening. Apparently some of the finest sunsets in the world could be seen from there, and I like a blood red sunset. It reminds me of the blood of any given pop star when I have stabbed them. Take Paul Weller. I bet his blood is bright red.

But I didn’t get to see a blood red sunset or anything of the sort. It was foggy when I got there. And then I realised the name of the place. No wonder I had fantatsized about Weller’s death. I was standing in Stanley Market, on Stanley Road in Stanley. Still, they did sell gin.

PAUL WELLER: Stanley Road

Did Weller fall into a tannery in the early nineties? Or is his current permatanned face a natural development of aging. Certainly it is a constant reminder of how horrendous his music is. He is so terrifying that Leatherface from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre films has moved down into second in the chart of “leather-faced figures of fear”.

Apparently Weller won a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Brits this year. Does that mean he is about to die? It is unlikely seeing how well preserved the hardening and tanning process has made his body. A man made entirely of leather need face no fear when out in the world. Luckily he does no go naked, as his waterproof skin would allow him. Except perhaps in the woods, which one assumes Wildwood is all about.

To Stanley Road then, a song and concept album about the place of his birth. Certainly I have made a pilgrimage and desecrated that sign drawn so badly on the album cover. This came from a period when he started to be called the Modfather – surely a deeply ironic soubriquet. It was after all at this period when there was nothing modern about his music at all, and his fathering skills are some what suspect – if we think of previous abortions such as The Jam and The Style Council. Instead he keeps peddling plaintative ballads about why D.C.Lee left him (not stupid) and how remarkable Tory a former member of Red Wedge can appear to a generation. Let’s hope that lifetime achievement award knows something we don’t.

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