Steve Sutherland interviews Damon Albarn, 16th September 1995. Photos by Kevin Cummins.
Seeing as I have the N.M.E. pile out and we’re all still flushed from seeing Blur on stage again at Glastonbury 2009 I thought I’d post this, the counterpart to this cover, which has proved extremely popular. Gasp again to the cut and thrust of Blur vs. Oasis; thrill to the shenanigans of Cuntry House and The Great Escape; or just simply drool over the lovely Cummins picture of the young Albarn.
The years are starting to show though aren’t they? Quite understandable for Albarn to change the lyrics in End of a Century from “the mind gets dirty, as you get closer to thirty” to fifty, given the circumstances. It doesn’t scan as well but I’ll forgive him.
So I dunno if I was naive, but I wasn’t expecting quite such a retreat to the ‘Britpop’ Blur – perhaps Damon & Co. needed to be reminded of what great work they’ve produced over the years to feel re-invigorated for the future? It has, lest we forget, been a long slog for them over the last 20 years. Something I was reminded of again today thanks to the serendipitous joys of Twitter when I read Rhodri Marsden’s first hand recollection of meeting Blur in their orignal Seymour form and then subsequently touring with them. Well worth reading and there’s this photo that shows why Dave gave up drinking.
It just so happens that I’ve managed to scan in a review from one of these early Blur performances where The Keatons supported. If you missed it the first time it’s here.
And let’s not forgot all of Blur’s festival unfriendly tunes. Here’s a Spotify playlist showcasing the gloomy side of Blur through the years.
June 25, 2009
I’ll leave it to his contemporaries to write the perceptive, insightful, emotional stuff.
In James Brown’s piece he says “Anything loud or unhip became his domain” which seems particularly astute in the context of the few measly scraps I can offer.
Carter USM, Jesus Jones and finally, perhaps fittingly, Snuff.
Steven Wells interviews Carter USM, 19th November 1994. Photos Roger Sargent & Derek Ridgers
Steven Wells interviews Jesus Jones, 1st July 1989. Photo Lawrence Watson.
Steven Wells reviews Snuff Said by Snuff, 18th November 1989
June 19, 2009
Dave Simpson reviews Lush and The Pale Saints live at The Warehouse, Leeds, 9th December 1989.
A 4AD love in – and just look at that perfect indie moptop in the picture! This had me rushing straight to Spotify to listen to Pale Saints debut, The Comforts of Madness, which I hadn’t listened to in 15+ years. Apart from Sight of You seeming to me to be a carbon copy of a bombastic era U2 record (admittedly with a *much* feyer vocal) as a whole it stands up pretty well. But then maybe my ears just enjoyed hearing some old, familiar tunes. You decide – here’s the Spotify link
June 17, 2009
One has to assume that Mueller got these Australian review gigs as a result of having already flown back home at his own expense rather than IPC whisking him on a first class flight to Sydney to review The Ramones and The Jean-Paul Sartre Experience, a band with a name worst than Dumpy’s Rusty Nuts. But then Stephen Sweet took the picture so perhaps IPC did splash the cash afterall.
So this retrospectively posted on 17th June in honour of meeting Mr. Andrew Mueller in person on that very date.
And when I say met, I suppose you could read ‘mugged’ or ‘door-stopped’ or whatever the word is when you recognise someone in the street and shout “Andrew!” before you’ve really thought through what you’re going to follow your opening salutation with. God bless the jet-lagged Mueller for not telling a rambling drunken stranger to fuck off.
Ted Mico reviews The Pixies live in Boston and Caren Myers reviews The Sugarcubes live in Yugoslavia, 9th December 1989
June 14, 2009
Ted Mico reviews The Pixies live in Boston and Caren Myers reviews The Sugarcubes live in Yugoslavia, 9th December 1989. Pixies photo Mike Morton.
Black Francis with hair. Read the review and tell me you’re not jealous that you weren’t there.
And The Sugarcubes in the former Yugoslavia. Various rumours and reports that Einar’s off-key yelping at this gig was a major factor in the break up of the former Yugoslavia still persist to this day.
A prize for anyone that can tell me in the comments who or what the black butterfly was a teaser ad for.