Everett True reviews the singles of the week, 22nd April 1989

Interestingly ET signs off with “one of these days I’m gonna emigrate over there” in his review of New Zealand band Straightjacket Fits. Well he’s not quite there but he is in Brisbane and that’s enough to impress me. So well done to ET for displaying such vaulting predeterminism in his review but however good it sounded I can’t believe it’s better than The Cure’s Lullaby, one of their finest ever singles and I’m no great Cure fan. Anyone got a copy of Life in One Chord? Thought not.

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Talk Talk Talk with Mr Agreeable, 26th October 1991

Talk Talk Talk with Mr Agreeable, 26th October 1991.

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Stuart Maconie reviews Bona Drag by Morrissey, 20th October 1990

Stuart Maconie reviews Bona Drag by Morrissey, 20th October 1990.

Can’t say I agree with this positive, yet workmanlike review from Maconie. Morrissey was coming up short in the lyric dept. with increasing frequency even during The Smiths and post Viva Hate has bluffed it ever since.

Yet with the breakup of the Smiths still fairly recent in 1990, the starving demanded to be fed, unfortunately there was nothing left on the menu except gruel. Viva Hate had its morsels, Suedehead in particular, but without the foundation of Marr’s compositions and his sublime guitar work, the cracks in Morrissey’s irrelevant lyrics just became more and more apparent. With Bona Drag, Morrissey’s long, slow slide into irrelevance began. It pains me more than you realise that it still continues to this day.

But I will stick up for November Spawned A Monster, which I think of as the last great thing Morrissey wrote. Maconie dislikes it because it’s “so morbid and cheerless” Duh! That’s precisely why I like it. I can empathise with it. Sure it lacks wit and is dressed up in a touch too much metaphor but he’s singing to us, for us, the ugly and marginalized here, instead of prattling on about bloody Ouija boards and the like.

If all this just makes you want to listen to The Smiths, and it really should, then why not break out the old records for another spin and while you’re at it read Taylor Parkes latest retrospective piece on The Smiths over at The Quietus.

Note to self: Do not explicitly refer to a TV programme title that could be misconstrued, especially in conjunction with the sexualised use of the F word, if you do not want lots of people coming to your blog for all the wrong reasons.

Note to Pin-Up Nights: Thanks! You flatter me, but you really shouldn’t encourage me.

I spent a few days with some Glaswegians recently.

“What’s the difference between Glasgow and Edinburgh?”

“Well, Glasgow is a lot friendlier but you’re also much more likely to get stabbed”

Talk Talk Talk featuring Mr. Agreeable and Pepe Le Punk, 25th February 1995

So yesterday, what with it possibly being the end of the world as we know it, I was all set to post an R.E.M. interview, but then I started drawing the Songs About Fucking album cover in MS Paint. Oh that won’t take long I thought, but once I got going I kept tweaking and changing, and then there was no time left to post. But y’know…if the world had ended at least I’d have used my last time on the planet constructively..right? I am such a twat.

So tonight here’s some Talk Talk Talk with Mr. Agreeable and Pepe Le Punk in recognition of the post on The Idolator re: “Dear Backlash” and the follow up comments about it. Thanks to Michaelangelo Matos for the post. Is it just me or does the C.U.N.T. featured here look like Andrew Collins?

Feel free to check up on the state of the world yourself every so often, using this handy url


or for those of you who want something a little more serious


Dear Backlash - David Stubbs offers advice to the would be MM letter writers

Dear Readers,

Do you remember the humble letter? There are a couple of pictures on this piece to remind you exactly what one looks like should your memory fail you. A real handwritten letter is such a rare commodity these days and certainly as rare as to be practically extinct in the context of readers writing letters to N.M.E. as Morrissey famously did. Look that’s him in the background holding up an electric typewriter. Yes, electric…kinda like power steering for your fingers.

These days the only sort of letters anyone receives invariably hail from over friendly corporations, who, purely in the interests of trying to help us overcome life’s little hiccups, write to remind us that “in difficult times like these” they can help…because “there never has been a better time to buy [insert product or service] from [insert ‘helpful’ corporation name here]”. Cunts.

I can remember a time not that long ago, before faxes, emails, message boards and txts, when the letter was KING. It was THE medium of all communication with the press simply because it was the ONLY medium of communication with the press. You’ll understand of course that I NEVER once wrote to Melody Maker, precisely for fear of eliciting the sort of sniggering ridicule on the 25th floor that Wing Co. Stubbs sums up here. With typical gusto, and drawing on (deep breath), Shakespeare, Chaucer, Kant, Wittgenstein (twice), Kafka, neoclassical English literature, Salvador Dali, haiku poetry, James Joyce and Keats, Stubbs belittles yet consistently¬† entertains throughout. Thoroughly enjoyable but so very much of its time, and not only because of all those overtly intellectual reference points.

Can you imagine the sort of responses to this there would be these days if there were online comments below. LOL!!!!!!!!

I was never a prolific letter writer but sending and receiving letters was something special, a rare treat due to the physicality of the item. I haven’t written a letter for ages so I make this rash promise. I will write a proper letter to the first person that gets in touch with their postal address. With this letter I will include not only kind words but also the Dear Backlash page featured here. Consider this proposal open and valid until such a time that this page says it’s not.

Yours in anticipation,


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Taylor Parkes reviews The Smiths re-issues 25th February 1995

This is absolutely fucking brilliant. I too was one of the doomed and this was my mantra.

Well I wonder
Do you hear me when you sleep ?
I hoarsely cry
Oh …

And in a lovely piece of irony, the cover stars referred to who “will never mean that much” have an advert placed directly under the review. By accident or design?

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