Wednesday, December 24, 2014

I was in the completely unrelated location of Takayama when I was confronted with the dream-like scenario: "Queen", that being Brian May, Roger Taylor and some potato I'd never heard of were coming to my home town of Melbourne to perform over two nights at Rod Laver Arena. It wasn't a matter of simply getting a ticket, no. I was compelled to spend a late night and rainy morning surveying the options, the vast array of "Official VIP Experiences" which included fancy laminate cards, t-shirts, stubby holders, important people parties and even a specialist telephone helpline, reserved for confused Queen fans. I squinted over the options...

The "We Are the Champions VIP Experience" was priced at AUD$600 while the "I Want It All VIP Experience" cost AUD$750. The most expensive package, the AUD$1,300 "Ultimate On Stage Experience" would get you within tripping distance of Brian May, yet there was no prospect of any meeting, no chance of any awkward banter or hysterics. The whole set-up made standing a metre away from Avril Lavigne for USD$400 seem like a real bargain. So, without the promise of any encounter, I reserved plebby pre-sale Fan Club seats for my best friend and myself, a considerable distance away from the stage.

It was difficult to justify the expense, after all that I had seen Brian and Roger ham it up with that other potato in Hyde Park for a mere GBP£30 in 2005. Had I existed in 1976, I could have seen Queen (with Freddie) in the same place for nothing. However, this whole experience of "having to choose an experience" forced me to consider the phenomenon of the VIP experience and how it is now possible to grade your level of fanaticism in such precise increments. There is the conscious consideration: "Is this really worth it? Do I like them that much to fork out this money for a single night?" You're left to think about value of a moment that will ultimately slip through your fingers.

I strongly believe that the VIP experience manages to thrive due to the way that we document our lives online. I think it got to a point where that ridiculously distorted audio and familiar low-res blur shot from an iPhone at the back of a venue became totally ubiquitous and stupid. It makes sense that this scheme developed where you could distinguish yourself from the ordinary punter in such a way that you could document everything with such enviable clarity. Where I'm coming from, it's easy to survey the once-in-a-lifetime antics of those who are arguably more faithful and less stingy than I.

The morning after Queen, everyone asked what it was like. I was stunned, overwhelmed and genuinely quite incapable of describing what had just happened. I kept on repeating, "I should have just given them all my money, I should have been closer, I should have been on the stage..." Saying that, I'm still suspicious of my ability to appreciate a moment as it's happening. I need to think about it, I need to sit down with a notebook, I need to listen to a bootleg or in the case of last Friday afternoon, I need to wade through cardboard boxes full of 2014 Queen tour memorabilia. My kind, new resourceful friend in the merch division of my company examined the description on the boxes:

"Do you want a t-shirt? A tour program? A stubby holder? It's all going to be destroyed anyway..."

I smiled.

"Yeah, yes please. I want it all."


Cassettes & Chocolate Milk: Italo Disco Podcast #61
Borneo - Let's All Dance
RAF - Self Control
Hubert Kah - The Picture
Telex News - Forever
Lame - You've Got The Night
Julie - Tora Tora Tora
Riccardo Maggese – Boschima
Fockewulf 190 – Gitano

Download (58.6 MB)

Monday, September 08, 2014

C&CM Exclusive: Download Rare 1985 Radio Interviews from The Direct Hits!

I'm thrilled to announce that The Direct Hits have graciously donated two radio interviews to C&CM that have been unplayed since their original broadcast in 1985!

Originally broadcast in April 1985 on the South East London pirate radio station, Skyline Radio, host Nick Miller talks to Colin Swan, Geno Buckmaster and Brian Grover about fostering talent on their imprint Direct Records, the mood of London audiences and the interest surrounding their forthcoming tour of Germany and Italy.

The second interview dates from July 1985 and features both Colin and Geno discussing exploits from their most recent tour ("I lost a shoe in Hamburg"), humorous reflections on Live Aid not to mention their thoughts of some new record releases. Both clips are fascinating portrait of the band both before and after their career-defining tour of the continent.

The Direct Hits - The Skyline Radio Interviews (1985)
The Direct Hits - Radio Press (1985)

The discovery of these interviews comes with The Direct Hits unearthing artefacts including previously unseen photographs, gig posters, tickets for the Christmas release of a new book called "My Back Pages". You can keep up to date with this and other upcoming developments on both the band's official page and their Facebook page.

As an added incentive, check out these nifty badges dating from 1987 which recently featured! I want each and every last one of them.

EDIT: Be careful what you wish for! These fair badges just arrived in my mailbox! AMAZING!

And just in case you missed it the first time round, this is the C&CM Conversation with Colin Swan.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

The title of the book was enough to capture my attention, A Scene in Between: Tripping Through the Fashions of UK Indie Music 1980-1988. Upon its arrival at my house, I poured over every matte-print photograph of stylish yet seemingly anonymous musicians. They'd sport black and white horizontal striped shirts, drain-pipe jeans and scruffed-up Chelsea boots. Their heavy, hollow-bodied guitars would crumple billowy shirts, anoraks and duffle coats. The girls would accessorise familiar '50s polka-dot dresses with matching linen belts. Everyone would pose awkwardly on crumbling grey streets, they would play self-consciously on stages in pine-clad rec-halls among friends. It was all reminiscent of the life I had always wanted and the style I sought to revive... and then I saw this photograph of the Hastings band, The Wylde Things.

So Wylde

The photograph was the most sublime combination of style and inconvenience I had ever seen. Without hesitation I made it my Facebook profile picture, never stopping to consider whether anybody would appreciate what was so cool about it. Much of my fascination had to do with the fact that I've maintained a fringe for the best part of eight years and for me, fringe trims have always been an ordeal. Every six weeks, my obscured eyesight would remind me of my ongoing obligation and they were almost always poorly executed endeavours. Sure, it's a minor operation, cutting ten centimetres of hair across my face in a straight line but it usually results with stray strands and a mystifying jump in length over my left eyebrow. A slapdash hairdresser would brush me off, both physically and literally: "It's just your hair!" and I would have to stop myself from saying: "It's just one third of my freaking face!"

Aside from fringe trims, the photograph seems to fascinate me on an entirely different level. Sure, seeing, breathing and eating would be quite difficult with such a trendy aesthetic, but I love the idea of losing yourself, ultimately sacrificing your face to style. I love the idea that a person can choose anonymity, particularly in the face of cultural recognition. Identification, attribution and celebration appears to be such an integral part of the art-making process that choosing to be anonymous seems to be such a bizarre notion. Perhaps it is funny, in that case, what with such little information left about The Wylde Things that this photograph should remain. Then again, it's kind of sweet to think that all you really need to know about them is contained here. You can't see their faces, sure, but you can see it in how he tilts his head, how the other holds his cigarette, how they all stand together as they do. They're the ones with attitude, with swagger. They're the ones who understood the thrill and the value of '60s garage.

I want to be in their gang.

Cassettes & Chocolate Milk: Jangle Pop Podcast #60
The Fire Engines - Big Gold Dream
Orange Juice - Falling and Laughing
The Servants - Aim in Life
The Direct Hits - Captivating Eyes
Primal Scream - May the Sun Shine Bright for You
Marine Girls - A Place in the Sun
Strawberry Switchblade - Go Away
June Brides - Heard You Whisper
Phil Wilson - 10 Miles
Talulah Gosh - Talulah Gosh

Download (48.5 MB)

Friday, June 20, 2014

C&CM for Tonerpalooza 2014

Melbourne-based zine lovers will be thrilled to know that the State Library of Victoria is playing host to Tonerpalooza this weekend, that is Jun 21-22. Aided by the kind folk over at Sticky Institute, there will be loads of workshops, talks, bands, not to mention a big zine fair. For the full programme, head over here.

On the Sunday, C&CM will also be making a zine fair appearance with a heavy suitcase of new, old and rare zines plump with musical analysis. Available to purchase for practically nothing will be Twenty Selected Essays (2014), This is Love in 1972 (2014), Consequential Lyrics (2013), Influence (2011) and I'm Switzerland (2011). 

For more information about C&CM's zines and where to get them, head to C&CM's zine page.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

It was something that Stephen Fry said in a half-hour heart-warming ramble, that a generation has grown up with the internet. He went on to talk about the implications it had on the ease of gathering knowledge, but for me, it was a simple fact that led me to think about the young and musically isolated. Is it still possible to feel culturally disconnected, when it's so easy to find those who share your passion online?

I often find myself disenchanted at the thought that it is no longer rare to find a musical connection. Where at 15, I would have done anything to indulge in a lengthy discussion about Black Celebration, I now have ongoing access to those who "get it": passionate friends from Melbourne (and others far beyond) who reach out to gush and discuss the minutiae of musical culture. It's a shared obsession that is never dismissed with such negative terms as "geekery". It's just life as we live it.

My Tumblr, Avowals and Denials has given me this odd insight into what it could have been like, had I been born a little later. It is gratifying to see the same type of insatiable interest live on, presumably due to the education and influence of parents who loved classic rock in their youth. There is that familiar lament: If only I had lived then! Le sigh! Where others at school don't understand, there is a never ending feed of reblogged images and animated gifs which denote a reinforced sense of commonality.

Perhaps online fandom has really changed nothing. Perhaps the contrast of alienation against the phantom prospect of a connection is central to the idea of being an adolescent. I want to make a return to a place where a musical discussion still thrills and warms my heart, but perhaps that is all over for now. It might just be that connection is the norm. It comforts me to know this is the time I had always wished for and I am now among those I had always wanted.

Cassettes & Chocolate Milk: Mod Podcast #59
The Great Scots - Don't Want Your Love
The Starfires - There's Still Time
The Seeds - Pushin' Too Hard
Max Frost & The Troopers - Shape of Things to Come
The Booze - California Blonde
Real List - Pick Up The Marbles
Strawberry Alarm Clock - Incense and Peppermints
Allah-Las - Tell Me (What's On Your Mind)
Death by Unga Bunga - I Wanna Go Wild
The Bermudas - Chu Sen Ling
Bobby Darin - Dream Lover
The Bards - The Owl and the Pussycat

Download (47.6MB)

Monday, February 24, 2014

I have always been aware that when it comes to music from another country, there's always that slightly tacky, yet romantic prospect of the musical pilgrimage. I knew this, having pined for London each day between the ages of 5 and 20. The slightly-embellished story I've always told is this: upon my return to England, the first thing I did was take the southbound District Line service to Earl's Court tube station to visit Freddie Mercury's former home at Garden Lodge. Having initially taken a bus in the wrong direction, I had time to quietly contemplate what I would inscribe on Freddie's door. Yet as I stood before that ever-familiar dark green door with its loving messages scrawled and scratched over every square centimetre, I thought: "There's no way I could possibly articulate this..."

It's an alluring idea, to think that a place can be charged with significance and you might be able to sense that. I'll always recall the story I heard on a radio documentary about John Lennon's childhood home, Mendips. Now a museum, the caretaker described one particular young Japanese tourist who visited. Initially quiet, calm and polite, upon entering John's bedroom, she threw herself onto his bed and started wailing uncontrollably. Other visitors described how moved they were to be there, they described this feeling that took over them once they entered the house. In that way, the musical pilgrimage manages to align itself with the spiritual quality of a pilgrimage in the religious sense. Perhaps if I were more intuitive or had a greater sense of imagination, I could sense an importance, as opposed to simply being informed of one.

I love to consult the pilgrimages of Pete Frame's Rockin Around Britain, simply because the extreme level of research renders the spirituality of the musical pilgrimage void. I mean, I can't anticipate that anyone would venture out to the Permawrap cling film factory in High Wycombe simply because Howard Jones once worked in the stock control department. If anything, the fact that Frame has compiled such an enormously comprehensive resource indicates that culture is being created everywhere, in cities and villages, in halls and studios, even in squares and tube stations. It's a fact, but we're not always so inclined to react to any given locality in such a drastically emotional way.

Saying that, I'll rarely miss the opportunity to embark on one of these musical adventures. Not so long ago, I was sitting in a hotel room in Milan when my brother suddenly said to me: "Wait a second. Aren't the Paninaro kids from Milan?" I rushed to the baby laptop and replayed the promotional clip of the Pet Shop Boys' Paninaro - it became apparent that we had accidentally stumbled upon a place filled with musical consequence. I read out slabs of text, describing the 1980s youth culture. They seemed so glamourous, what with their insatiable appetite for American culture, designer denim and sandwiches. "They congregated around the sandwich bars at Piazza San Babila..." It seemed clear there was no turning back now: we were on a mission to find us some Paninaro kids.

The first thing we did the next day was venture out to Piazza San Babila. There was no abundance of sandwich, indeed there was nothing to indicate that anything had ever happened there. We walked over to the subway, recognising its inclusion in the Pet Shop Boys' video. Rafts of bored business men and tourists congregated together tightly, forming a queue by the gates and spilling out into the square. As we settled down to a bottle of milk at a nearby supermarket café, I thought about the Paninaro kids, who they were and what they might have become. One of them might have been in that crowd waiting for the subway to open, but we never would have known it. Perhaps if there were a plaque or something, a token boy in appropriate vintage attire, we might have felt differently about our failed excursion.

I've found, with my recent love of Kino and Viktor Tsoi that I've developed this desire to venture off to Russia and test this whole theory about musical pilgrimages. I'd love to go to Arbat Street in Moscow and be confronted with that heavily graffitied wall in Tsoi's honour. I'd love to deal with that struggle again, that difficulty in trying to honour the beauty and the relevance of their music. I'd love to go to Club Kamchatka, the Kino museum café bar in St Petersburg that was once the boiler room of the apartment block where Tsoi worked and lived. I might not ever develop a real appreciation of what it was actually like to be in the depths of the Russian underground rock scene, what it might have been like to see a gig or source a bootleg cassette, but I appreciate that are people who attempt to create such opportunities to remember those moments we unfortunately missed the first time round.

The Tsoi Wall by Charlie Radosna

Cassettes & Chocolate Milk: Soviet Pop Podcast #58
Yury Mukhin - Humouresque
Display - Foreign Lady
Electroclub feat. Victor Saltykov - You Marry Him, Do Not Go
Kino - Your Number
Aquarium - Rock n Roll's Dead
Rodionov - Electronic Jockey (Horse Racing)
Rodionov - Baroque (Fencing)
Forum - On the Next Street
Arsenal - Festival
Aavikko - Machu Picchu

Download (50MB)

Friday, February 14, 2014

I've always struggled with the concept of artistic fulfilment, I could never figure out what it was or how to get it. You could imagine that I was surprised when I came across a recipe for how to attain creative satisfaction from one of the panellists of Melvyn Bragg's In Our Time. The ingredients are really quite simple: all you need is creative control, remuneration and recognition. It's a nice thought but there are so many questions that follow this premise, all the questions involving quantity, ego and expectation. It reminds me of those local musicians who never managed to "cross over" and "make it" in other cities or countries.

To be honest with you, I have a real fascination with those musicians who were never promoted here. I am in love with those songs that I was never meant to hear. My friend Dimitri offers me this insight into what it was like to be a French child of the 1980s. He shares rare music videos, songs that many French people cannot even recall. He accompanies each song with this extraordinary understanding of its social context and critical reception. At the same time, he manages to describe the personal legacy of these songs: every song has an association.

 Muriel Moreno of Niagara

In exchange, I offer up my Australian childhood songs, awkwardly conscious of the fact that my exposure to local musical culture peaked when I was a child. I developed a liking for Ratcat, The Screaming Jets, Southern Sons and Diesel from watching Video Smash Hits. However, my exposure to local music ultimately ended when I quickly fell in love with English pop music. Throughout my twenties, there has been enormous pressure to support local music and as the pressure has intensified, my curiosity has dwindled and died out. I now live with this thought that I have purposefully ignored so much of what has been happening around me, just to indulge in this dream of living in another place, in another time.

I recall one of our last conversations, it was a cold night on Lygon Street and we were sipping these extravagant iced mochas. You were telling me of the intimate going's-on of Melbourne's 2002 Garage Rock movement. It was akin to my appreciation of London in 1977, Bristol in 1981, Milan in 1983 or Leningrad in 1984. There's this core group of tirelessly cool musicians who manage to create a community, unified by this distinctive sound and attitude. With the right sources, you can daydream about what it must have been like to be in that club, what it meant to be among the few people who understood the significance of actually being present.

"That's a good quality to have." I said, in between sips. "To be able to deconstruct an emerging scene, to recognise and define the consequence of the present. I think that's pretty special..."

Perhaps, it's not about the breadth of the acclaim, it's not about whether you're huge in Melbourne, Milan or even Mexico. When it comes to the recognition component of that artistic fulfilment recipe, I think it's about creating some kind of legacy. Whether that's in the form of a personal or cultural legacy, I think every artist has that desire to have their work placed within some sort of a context. Maybe it's up to us to create those histories, not only for our own understanding of how it all went down, but for the artist, too. We should let them know that we care, we should let them know that we've committed them to memory...

Cassettes & Chocolate Milk: French Pop Podcast #57
April March - Brainwash Part II
BB Brunes - Houna
Mai Lan - Schumacher
Exsonvaldes - L'aérotrain
Aline - Elle m'oubliera
Les Calamités - Vélomoteur
Yelle - A Cause Des Garçons
Corynne Charby - Boule de Flipper
Images - Love Emotion
Soko - I'll Kill Her

Download (56.5 MB)

Monday, October 07, 2013

Consequential Lyrics #8: Fan Episode

Engage your confetti cannons, we've come to the end of the series of Consequential Lyrics!

Before we go all crazy though, I present the final episode which is entirely made up of submissions from some very eloquent lovers of music.

I owe an enormous debt of gratitude to the great many contributors who took the time to record something for Consequential Lyrics. In random order, these people include:

Andy Hazel (writer/musician, Bressa Voe)
Boy Billy 
Craig Schuftan (writer/broadcaster, Entertain Us!),
David Quantick (writer/broadcaster, The Blagger's Guide)  
James Anderson (blogger/podcaster, Appetite for Distraction)
Jerry (blogger/podcaster, Red Red Wine on a Sunday)
Louise Sucre 
Marcella Wright (musician/blogger, The Life Degustation)
Missy Laur 
Neave Merrick (musician, Automatic Writing)
Simon Knight (audio engineer/musician, Lung U P C)

And of course, a big thank you goes to the artist who did a superb rending of the Consequential Lyric logo, White Tiger Grafiks! I'll do something special for you all one of these days, I owe you bigtime.

Of course, thank you for reading, listening and engaging with Consequential Lyrics. It's been an especially rewarding project, combining all my favourite things: lyricism, sentimentality, meaning, gushiness. It's been fantastic.

What's been your favourite episode? And if you're yet to declare one, what's your consequential lyric and why? And how would you fancy a Series 2??

Consequential Lyrics #8: The Fan Episode
Pagan Wanderer Lu - 2.0///The Bridge of Sighs
Sonic Youth - Kool Thing
The Sugarcubes - Birthday
Smashing Pumpkins - Cherub Rock
Leonard Cohen - Anthem
The Replacements - Bastards of Young
EMF - Unbelievable
David Bowie - All the Madmen
The Smiths - London
Moloko - Sing It Back
Jamie Lidell - Game of Fools
Mariah Carey - Anytime You Need a Friend

Download (105 MB)

Post Script: If you're at all wondering about the mysterious location of Consequential Lyrics #7, it's a bonus episode about Roxette and you'll find it here!

Monday, September 30, 2013

Consequential Lyrics #6: Erasure

"I ain't ever going home, cause I'm having a good time, I ain't ever going home cause my time has come..." I never understood why those lines from the Erasure song, Home meant so much to me, because I've always wanted to return home. The music of Erasure always felt so safe to me, even now I feel so assured by its warmth and familiarity. It was always sacred in that regard, because I always knew that its beauty could never be corrupted by the passage of time. For my closest friends and family, Erasure would be unique in that we all felt incapable of describing their consequence and yet, we appeared to be so assured that we all felt the same thing.

I always knew that Erasure would carry this great importance to me, after all I had spent most of my life listening to their 1988 album, The Innocents in an attempt to recall blissful childhood memories of the English village where I lived for a short time. The memories would crystallise as I would announce to everyone, "Hallowed Ground is the village green! Ship of Fools is my school!" When I finally returned as a twenty year old, I walked around its vaguely familiar streets and purposefully listened to The Innocents, meditating upon its unique connection to this precious era. Again, I felt stunted by the consequence of this music and I knew, however I framed it, I could never honour it adequately enough.

The entire Consequential Lyrics project has been about acknowledging and articulating the personal meaning of lyrics. It's so strange with Erasure, because their consequence seems to exist in this largely unexplored state. Yet we're still so keen to stress the importance of these songs, we grab each others arms' and shriek whenever a song like Drama! or Imagination comes on: "I can't believe I actually forgot how perfect these songs are..." Such a response like this would transcend timezones and there'd be a buzz of text message saying exactly the same thing. We could never do anything but agree, acknowledging that familiar jab of endorphins that is reliably released during the first few seconds of Always or In My Arms. 
For me, it's perfect music that's frequently associated with these truly perfect moments of assurance and connection. I frequently return to the recent memory of ambling down the Philosopher's Walk in Kyoto with my brother and my best friend, singing Yahoo! together with this boisterous, gleeful enthusiasm. Perhaps I was thrilled to be celebrating such personal music in such a public way (or else I was buzzing from committing such an extreme gaijin faux pas in such an iconic locale). Whatever the reason, I love idea that we just can't get over it. We can't move past that hysterical stage of preliminary gushing and analyse why Erasure resonates as it does.

I'm sure if we were pressed to do so, we could all sit down and analyse what makes music (or indeed, lyrics) consequential. We could tear apart the poetic devices in those lyrical fragments, the scenic allusions created by Vince's synthesizers, the feelings induced by tried-and-tested key signatures and chord progressions. We could even go so far as to elaborate upon those independently created personal meanings, those stories that seem to have absolutely nothing to do with the music itself. But then it all makes me wonder that if it were so easy to explain musical meaning, it probably wouldn't mean so much. That and there's a kind of relief that comes with just feeling... and knowing that others feel it too.

Wrap yourself up in every facet of emotion...

Consequential Lyrics #6: Erasure
Hallowed Ground
I Love Saturday
In My Arms
My Heart... So Blue (Orchestral Remix)
When I Needed You (Melancholic Mix)
All Through The Years

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Consequential Lyrics: Urgent Memo from the Desk of C&CM!

Yet to record your contribution to the last episode of Consequential Lyrics? You have exactly one week to commit your feelings to tape! For details on how to contribute, hit the FAQ page!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Consequential Lyrics #5: The Smiths

There was a time when I enthusiastically advertised my adoration for The Smiths song, Rubber Ring. I always sure to provide that auspicious caveat that I would never outgrow the Smiths. I rebuffed those introductory lyrics: A sad fact widely known, the most impassionate song to a lonely soul is so easily outgrown. I'm certain that there were many others like me who were determined to reassure themselves that The Smiths were not just a phase, a fascination stemming from teen loneliness. Now, I can't help but view Rubber Ring as Morrissey's provocative statement, trolling the reverence of the faithful Smiths fan. To me, it's almost akin to a highly cherished (yet extremely insecure) lover baiting you in a snarl: "You'll get over me, you'll forget me when I'm gone."

Yet, in returning to The Smiths in this episode of Consequential Lyrics, I can't help but feel like there is a kernel of truth in Morrissey's prediction. It's a struggle to define exactly what I mean by that, because it is not as if I don't still love them. Their music and lyrics continue to be very important, but somehow it seems to lack that closeness it once had. I think back to when the lyrics was distressingly relevant: when loneliness, yearning and affinity seemed to be a central concern, when disastrous nights out seemed to be more prevalent. I assumed that its resonance had diminished because I don't live like that anymore. I don't think like that anymore. It's strange and it all makes me wonder whether lyrics really need to have that contemporary relevance in order to be truly consequential.

It's been suggested to me that it's not really a matter of relevance, more an issue of personal acknowledgement. For some, it can be especially difficult to acknowledge painful memories, those feelings that are recalled when we listen to songs like I Know It's Over and Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want. The intimacy of Morrissey's lyricism can be distressing at times and the fact that these songs often take place within the adolescent bedroom serves to intensify that intimacy. It's important to have that idea of Morrissey as the adolescent fan and loner, it's important because it clearly demonstrates that he's been where "you" are now. He adores Sparks and The New York Dolls as you adore The Smiths and he gets it, he genuinely understands what it is to identify and obsess.

More than anything, it's important to preserve that idea of Morrissey as the adolescent fan and loner because eventually, he found someone that cured him: he met Johnny Marr. For my friends and I, The Smiths represented this prospect of an intensely brilliant creative partnership. We would analyse Morrissey and Marr: their oddly non-confrontational collaborative methods involving Johnny pushing a cassette tape through Morrissey's postbox, Marr's evident annoyance when he said he wrote this beautiful, rambling guitar line and then Morrissey called it Some Girls are Bigger Than Others. It was hardly an ideal partnership but you could see the love, you could see the affection in all those photographs of them together, draped over one another. We looked to them because it was the kind of connection we had always yearned for. We had always yearned for something as precious and as rare as their love for one another.

The Smiths lack that contemporary relevance because I no longer have that desire to have a Marr to my Morrissey (or a Morrissey to my Marr). I suppose that stings a little, because it was something that I had always wanted, something that I felt like I had always needed in order to be successful. I now see that intensely brilliant creative partnership is a kind of luxury, a myth that suggests a Marr could just rock up on your doorstep and fill the cracks in your head and your heart. But maybe that shift in attitude means that The Smiths are more probably relevant than they ever were, in all my years of loving them. It hurts to listen to them because they remind me of the hope I had and the hope I lost.

For we cannot cling to those old dreams anymore...

Consequential Lyrics #5: The Smiths
Rubber Ring
Pretty Girls Make Graves
How Soon is Now?
Girl Afraid
There is a Light That Never Goes Out
Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want
Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me
I Won't Share You

Download (59.8 MB)