Posts from September 2012

Sep 12

DREDD 3D, Punkpunk and the Aggro Style

Do You See/////1 comment • 894 views

(Crossposted from my tumblr.)

Right – I think it’s about time to share my thoughts on DREDD 3D. SPOILERS below the cut if you’ve not seen it, but then again, why haven’t you? Maybe a spoiler is what you need to make your mind up.


Sep 12

D:REAM – “Things Can Only Get Better”

Popular59 comments • 7,180 views

#701, 22nd January 1994

A song of many lives: we’re catching it at the end of its first, after a failed release in 1993 and a bounce around the charts. In three years time it’ll be changed for good, the soundtrack to Tony Blair’s first election win. From then on its critical fortunes are linked to its grinning patron’s, and at some point in the early 00s it stops being a naff take on real optimism and becomes a different kind of reflection: brittle, shallow, endlessly on-message.


Sep 12


Popular41 comments • 4,141 views

#700, 8th January 1994

Looking back on the Summer of Ragga (and indeed the Winter Of Ragga), what strikes me is how cuddly its chart presence was. Dancehall was a controversial import: for a pop audience used to reggae as good vibes unity music, the arrival of young lions like Shabba Ranks was a shock. Particularly as the sex, swagger and silk trousers might be mixed up inextricably with vicious homophobia. But none of that drama showed up in the charts. While The Word took time out from dousing students in beans to grapple with the issues, pre-watershed ragga was a brighter, sunnier experience.


Sep 12

Popular ’93

Popular85 comments • 3,684 views

The year that broke Popular! (nearly)

I gave every song a mark out of 10, now you can say which you’d have given 6 or more to, and reminisce about the year in general, post lists, discuss the merits of Back To The Planet, etc etc.

Which Of These 1993 Number Ones Are Any Good At All?

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TAKE THAT – “Babe”

Popular47 comments • 4,859 views

#699, 18th December 1993

For their Christmas tearjerker, Take That – now comfortably the country’s biggest band – deployed their secret weapon: Little Mark Owen, a singer so awkwardly earnest he strips a layer of skin off even the hokiest of material. And what he has to work with here is pure melodrama – a song of a long-absent man who tracks down his lover to find not just her but – we presume – his unknown son.