Al’s Top 30 Albums Of All Time – No. 9

Marquee_moon_album_cover

Number 9: Television – Marquee Moon (1976)

American punk was, for the most part, vastly different to British punk. It’s widely acknowledged that the Ramones debut is the first recognised punk record, but ten years earlier, the likes of The Stooges and The MC5 were making music so aggressive that it would make Black Flag look like a bunch of fannies, but that’s merely my opinion (To further extend my opinion, I believe that the first punk record was Bob Dylan Live 1966. Discuss.) The U.S. punk scene was arty and spiky, a reaction against the horrific boredom of records made by slurs on the music industry such as Chicago, The Eagles and Supertramp. A venue in New York became famous, you can buy T-Shirts with its logo on in fucking Top Shop. It was called CBGB’s.

The biggest stars of American punk and new wave would play there, Blondie, Talking Heads, Patti Smith, Suicide, The Ramones themselves, and of course Television, the most iconic of them all and possibly the most surreptitiously influential band of the era. Everything about them was perfect, from the skinny angular image to the neat, well-chosen name. Marquee Moon could well be the most musically accomplished album ever made that isn’t a jazz or classical album. It is a punk record that doesn’t contain a single strummed chord. It is a record that plays to the head rather than the heart, the astoundingly visceral lyrics (“My eyes are like telescopes,” “I recall lightning struck itself”) matched so potently by the guitar work of two musicians who were at the absolute peak of their craft. Verlaine and Lloyd’s lines weave together like a scientific diagram of DNA, creating a intricate yet rugged tapestry which is often difficult to take in all at once.

The opening track, See No Evil, is a song that The Strokes have made an entire career out of ripping off, a terse, circular guitar riff which blooms magnificently into a solo after the second chorus. It is the only conventional song on the album. Venus de Milo and Friction both feature guitar work that is the sonic equivalent of watching thousands of fireworks cascading to the ground in perfect time, and Torn Curtain is the soundtrack to a film noir that was never written. To say that Marquee Moon plays to the head is true, but there is warmth and humour here as well, mainly found in Guiding Light, with it’s lighters-aloft guitar break and the line “Never the rose, without the prick.” Elevation, for my money the best track on the album, has the most gripping sense of physical movement of any song ever written, and a heart-stopping change of time signature over the refrain. And one of the best, if not the best, guitar solo of all time. And then there’s the title track. Oh, good lord, the title track.

Your average punk single lasted about two and a half minutes. Admittedly, Marque Moon the song was released across two sides of 7″ vinyl, but it was still breaking ground in the most obscene way. This is a song based on a jazz scale invented in 1958 by Miles Davis, it is ten minutes and forty-two seconds long, it is sung by a man, whose voice, by any conventional measure, is terrible. It has no business being released as a single. It is a masterpiece, and an essential listen to anyone who has an interest in post-war music.

The NME made their 10/10 review of Marquee Moon the front page headline, the only time that has ever happened. The band themselves succumbed to the pressure of being The Best Thing In The History Of The World, and their second album, Adventure, got absolutely slated in the music press, simply for not being as good as their first one. So after playing in front of rabid punk crowds for a couple of years, they ended up supporting Peter Gabriel in sit-down venues to endless booing. A band that featured a really bad singer whose vocals perfectly suited the music, a group of musicians with an almost telepathic understanding, and one of the greatest ever debuts followed by a record that couldn’t possibly live up to the hype. Hmmmm… Mart… have we got one of those?

Best Tracks: Venus de Milo, Marquee Moon, Elevation

Best Moment: 2:43 into Guiding Light. For the most-part, this is a pretty cold album, but this bit is lovely.

Like this? Try: Horses by Patti Smith, 1976

profile b and wAllen Miles is 33 years old and lives in Hull. He is married and has a 3 year-old daughter who thinks she’s Elsa from Disney’s Frozen. He is a staunch supporter of Sheffield Wednesday FC and drinks far too much wine. He spends most of his spare time watching old football videos on youtube and watching 1940s film noir. He is the author of This Is How You Disappear, which is widely recognized to be the best book ever written. It is available here. http://tinyurl.com/disappear2014

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Al’s Top 30 Albums Of All Time – No. 11

11. Nirvana – In Utero (1993)

Nirvana-In_Utero-Frontal

So, I’ve just done Closer, and here is the second album in the Holy Trinity of albums to flagellate yourself to.

I get really pissed off when brainless Nirvana-acolytes say “Oooh, Kurt was too fragile to be famous, too sensitive. He didn’t want to sell out. He had to remain true to his art.” What utter bollocks. Your man here was a phenomenally gifted songwriter who knew exactly how to write something that would sell. The system did not manipulate him, he manipulated the system. In Utero is the sound of a grown man who had the world at his mercy deliberately throwing a colossal tantrum.

Nevermind was slick, arguably the slickest record ever made. Cobain was grounded in a lot of US hardcore racket such as Black Flag and the Meat Puppets, but he was also a fan of The Beatles and lots of tuneful 70s rock such as Cheap Trick and Boston. He knew how to write a melody. The edges of his natural spikiness were sandpapered off by Butch Vig and the result was an album of pop songs that incorporated the sound of buildings being demolished; the sound that made them the biggest cross-over band of all time. But no, he didn’t like that.

So what did he do? He started omitting Teen Spirit from live shows, and gave the follow-up album the working title I Hate Myself And I Want To Die. Then he hired Steve Albini to produce it, a man who’d been in bands called Rapeman and Big Black, the latter of which made a practically unlistenable album called Songs About Fucking.

Daft old Lou Reed aside, its difficult to recall another record that shows as much distain for its target audience as this one. Scentless Apprentice, for this writer the best song on the album, is such an incredible act of reaching into oneself, its very uncomfortable to listen to. If you read the lyric sheet, the words to the refrain are “Go away, get away, get away.” In actual fact they are recorded as “AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAG’WAAAAAAAYYYYYYEEEEEEEE!! GAWAAAAAAAYYYEEEEE!!! GAWAAAAAAAAAAYYY!” It is a track that has one of the best bombastic drumming performances in history, one that makes you realise that Dave Grohl is completely wasted in the Foo Fighters; the same with Milk It, Very Ape and the sarcastically-titled Radio Friendly Unit Shifter. The guitars sound like they have rust on the strings and Cobain’s vocals are sounding like he’ll be spitting blood when the songs finish. And Tourette’s, well…. its silly really, isn’t it?

His gift for melody shines through on All Apologies, Dumb and Heart-Shaped Box, but its no co-incidence that only three of the songs on this album were played on the seminal MTV Unplugged album; very few of these songs would work acoustically, they are all about the screaming, the racket, the catharsis and the sheer bloody-mindedness of a man who was in such conflict about what he had achieved that he would eventually blow his own head off. They were great. Someone should’ve told him.

Best Tracks: Scentless Apprentice, Heart-Shaped Box, Pennyroyal Tea

Best Moment: The disturbing line from Heart-Shaped Box: I wish I could eat your cancer when you turn black. Best appreciated while watching the astonishing video.

Like this? Try:
The Downward Spiral by Nine Inch Nails, 1994

profile b and wAllen Miles is 33 years old and lives in Hull. He is married and has a 3 year-old daughter who thinks she’s Elsa from Disney’s Frozen. He is a staunch supporter of Sheffield Wednesday FC and drinks far too much wine. He spends most of his spare time watching old football videos on youtube and watching 1940s film noir. He is the author of This Is How You Disappear, which is widely recognized to be the best book ever written. It is available here. http://tinyurl.com/disappear2014

Al’s Top 30 Albums Of All Time – No. 12

No. 12 – Joy Division – Closer (1980)

Joy_Division_Closer

Punk was all over by 1977. The Pistols had imploded and The Clash had developed their sound far beyond three chords and snarling, but in its slipstream a genre emerged that came to be called new-wave, and in 1979 three ground-breaking, visionary albums by British bands would leave a slow burning legacy that would infiltrate not just the UK, but America as well.

The first was Metal Box by Public Image Ltd, John Lydon’s big fuck-you to the punk scene, drawing heavily from dub reggae and krautrock and featuring some of the most bizarre vocals ever groaned and screeched; the second was 154 by Wire, an incredibly bleak experimental tour de force of dense guitars and conceptual lyrics; and the third was Unknown Pleasures by Joy Division, by turns ferocious and spectral, with striking minimalist artwork and a singer who did this on stage. Joy Division sounded like no other band before or since.

Closer, (their second album, pronounced cloz-er) was my introduction to Joy Division. It took me a long time to buy it, as it’s terrifying reputation went before it. It was like buying Schindler’s List on DVD; am I willing to sit down and deliberately make myself feel bad for the duration of this work? I bought it, and the artwork alone is enough to put you in a seriously sombre mood; the nine tracks on the disc however, form a granite monument of complete and utter misery.

The first track, Atrocity Exhibition, is a genuine contender for ugliest song of all time. The sound is so fractured and spiky and generally unpleasant that it is truly difficult to listen to, but some primeval force keeps you hooked. From what I can gather from the cryptic lyric moaned over the military drum beat and needling sheets of guitar, it is a song about bull fighting, although its entirely possible that Curtis is using that as a metaphor for God knows what, the repeated mantra “This is the way, step inside,” putting in place the voyeuristic element that permeates the whole album.

Curtis as a lyricist is unparalleled as one who looks into himself so deeply. No-one else has ever lived and died, quite literally, by his words as much as he did. Yet the flipside is very difficult to admire. Its obvious to all who’ve read up on him that he was a petulant, self-obsessed, narcissistic, ego-maniacal, morally-contemptuous little boy who lived his life like a play. In the Eternal, nine months after his wife gave birth to their child, he sings “Cry like a child, these tears make me older, With children my time is so wastefully spent, Burden to keep… Accept like a curse, An unlucky deal.” Imagine being his daughter, who will now be roughly my age and hearing those lyrics knowing that your dad has written them. How terrible.

Elsewhere, Isolation shows that the seeds of New Order were already in their embryonic phase, yet New Order never had a song that contained the lyric “Mother I’ve tried please believe me, I’m doing the best that I can, I’m ashamed of the things I’ve been put through, I’m ashamed of the person I am.” Heart and Soul and the skull-crushingly intense Twenty-Four Hours are absolutely petrifying pieces of music and also showcase the fact that Peter Hook was becoming a very, very good bass player. The Eternal and Decades are songs that sound like they’re being sung from a medieval crypt, under a foggy cemetery, and we can only stand at the top of the spiral staircase and listen to the pain that drifts up, not quite daring to descend. The lyrics are unbelievable. This man was twenty-two years old when this was recorded. These are biblical, statuesque images that can rival anything in The Divine Comedy or Paradise Lost, and only Leonard Cohen has written anything like them in the field of popular music. “Just for one moment I heard somebody call, look beyond the day in hand, there’s nothing there at all.” “Here are the young men, a weight on their shoulders…. We knocked on the door of Hell’s darker chambers, pushed to the limits we dragged ourselves in.”

Ian Curtis hung himself in 1980 at the age of twenty three. Twenty fucking three.

Best Tracks: Twenty Four Hours, The Eternal, Decades

Best Moment: 0:50 into The Eternal; the piano just adds to the weight of a song that is already too much to bare.

Like this? Try:
Spiderland by Slint, 1991

profile b and wAllen Miles is 33 years old and lives in Hull. He is married and has a 3 year-old daughter who thinks she’s Elsa from Disney’s Frozen. He is a staunch supporter of Sheffield Wednesday FC and drinks far too much wine. He spends most of his spare time watching old football videos on youtube and watching 1940s film noir. He is the author of This Is How You Disappear, which is widely recognized to be the best book ever written. It is available here. http://tinyurl.com/disappear2014

Al’s Top 30 Albums Of All Time – No. 13

No 13. REM – Automatic For The People. (1992)

automatic-for-the-people-by-rem

Football analogy #327: in the first weekend of the 1987-88 season, Kenny Dalglish’s Liverpool, arguably the greatest team ever to play in the English Football League, eviscerated Newcastle United 4-1 at Anfield. One of the Liverpool players scored a hat-trick, but it was not John Aldridge, John Barnes or Peter Beardsley, their immensely prolific three way strike force, but Steve Nicol, the right back. An example of when the collective is so strong, amazing feats come from the most unlikely of sources, like when Bill Berry, REM’s drummer, sat down and wrote Everybody Hurts, one of the world’s finest ever lullabies.

Sad without being morose, tuneful without being twee, Automatic is the musical equivalent of a reassuring hug from a loved one at a funeral. Eleven string-drenched folk-rock songs and one instrumental. Along with Oasis’s Morning Glory, it is the most ubiquitous album of my generation. Everybody had it. The songs are so sweet and gentle, and the musical palette so rich and resonant, it’s not hard to see why this album appealed to so many millions of people.

Michael Stipe, REM’s singer and to this day the best frontman I’ve ever seen live, was disturbingly thin and pallid during the promos of this album and it was heavily rumoured at the time that he had AIDS, and songs about death, suicide and uncertainty did little to dispel the talk. He didn’t have AIDS, obviously, but the subject matter of the songs, for example Try Not To Breathe’s story of an old man preparing to die with his favourite memories in his mind, is clearly a rumination on mortality. Everybody Hurts, surely now a song that everybody under the age of sixty knows off by heart, is a lyric of hope written after a sharp rise in suicide levels in the U.S, and they also manage to sneak a little political diatribe in with Ignoreland (1980, 84, 88, 92 were election years in America.)

Elsewhere, in a High Fidelity-style survey, pretty much everyone is naming Drive as one of their “Top 5 Side One, Track Ones,” and Sweetness Follows and Nightswimming emit the kind of comforting melancholy as the last scene from Lost In Translation. I’ve had conversations about this album with complete strangers in chip shops and round at my closest friends houses. It is language, it is currency; everyone has find a favourite here, whether it’s The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonight with its strange, twangy vocal in the chorus (he’s singing “Call me when you try to wake her up,” in case you didn’t know) or their glorious homage to Tim Buckley, Find The River. If you’re one of the fifteen people on the planet who doesn’t own this album, do yourself a favour…

Best Tracks: Drive, Sweetness Follows, Find The River

Best Moment: 3:50 into Everybody Hurts, after the pause, the impossibly sad “soooometimes…”

Like this? Try: Deserter’s Songs by Mercury Rev, 1998

profile b and wAllen Miles is 33 years old and lives in Hull. He is married and has a 3 year-old daughter who thinks she’s Elsa from Disney’s Frozen. He is a staunch supporter of Sheffield Wednesday FC and drinks far too much wine. He spends most of his spare time watching old football videos on youtube and watching 1940s film noir. He is the author of This Is How You Disappear, which is widely recognized to be the best book ever written. It is available here. http://tinyurl.com/disappear2014

Al’s Top 30 Albums Of All Time – No. 14

14. Jeff Buckley – Grace (1994)

grace

 

You often find that people who have an undeniably towering talent and/or position in society generally have to suffer some sort of adverse affect, in the same way that the most beautiful places on Earth are often found on seismic faultlines. For example, Bill Gates is the richest man in the world, and the indisputable leader of the software industry, but whenever he walks down the street, this happens. Simon Cowell has manipulated the music industry to make him a fortune, but he has no artistic credibility, and, as we all know deep down, no friends. Lionel Messi is the best professional footballer on the planet, and will go down as one of the top five of all time when he retires, but he looks like a water vole. These paradoxes are what keep me and you, the average people, from running into our respective workplaces, dropping our trousers and throwing home-made ninja stars at our colleagues. But sometimes you look at certain things in life and think “Well, that’s just not fair.”

Jeff Buckley had it all. He was a magnificent guitarist, impossibly good-looking and a brilliant songwriter. He had great musical heritage in that his father (who he only met once) was Tim Buckley, the brilliant folk-rock-jazz-soul singer who succumbed to a heroin overdose in 1974, and the influence of Grace can be found in Muse and Radiohead, two of the biggest bands in the world.

Jeff Buckley was arguably the greatest rock singer ever to have lived.

From the very first seconds of this record, it’s clear that there is something different at work here, a strange, alien voice humming into your ear. Mojo Pin is an extraordinary vocal performance, a swooping, swooning, screaming kaleidoscope of chanson, over the top of music that is gently shimmering one minute, wildly thrashing the next. The tone of the album is set. Certain moments of songs stand out so vividly that they have to be instantly listened to again to make sure you actually heard them correctly; the beautiful intro chord sequence in Lover, You Should Have Come Over, followed by some of the most lucidly heart-breaking lines ever, “She’s the tear that hangs inside my soul forever,” being one; the amazing Qawaali vocal on the title track, clearly indebted to Buckley’s interest in Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and when performed live, the vibrato was so intense that his jaw would shake uncontrollably; and the moment in Last Goodbye where his voice truly scrapes the stratosphere as he begs “Kiss me, please kiss me, kiss out of desire, not consolation.”

The most famous song on the album is obviously the definitive cover of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah, which has since been molested by one of Simon Cowell’s interchangeable genetic clones. So for all of you who have only heard the x factor take on that wonderful song, perhaps you could seek out this record, to see how an almost supernatural talent could deliver a song to us, with his sad-eyed looks and soul and voice that could rip your heart out of your chest.

These ten songs attracted such mass attention that he was able to tour all over the world, and the expectation was that his second album would have made him a major star, and elevated him to a status that his colossal gift deserved.

But he died. Of course he died. Drowned in the Mississippi River at the age of thirty.

What a waste.


Best Tracks:
Grace, Hallelujah, Dream Brother

Best Moment: The scream at 4:45 into the title track. As intense as rock music gets?

Like this? Try: I Am A Bird Now by Antony And The Johnsons, 2005

profile b and wAllen Miles is 33 years old and lives in Hull. He is married and has a 3 year-old daughter who thinks she’s Elsa from Disney’s Frozen. He is a staunch supporter of Sheffield Wednesday FC and drinks far too much wine. He spends most of his spare time watching old football videos on youtube and watching 1940s film noir. He is the author of This Is How You Disappear, which is widely recognized to be the best book ever written. It is available here. http://tinyurl.com/disappear2014

Al’s Top 30 Albums Of All Time – No. 15.

15. The Smiths – Meat Is Murder (1985)

 

meat is murder

To use the umpteenth football analogy of this article, if you ask a casual football fan who the greatest player of all time was, he/she would say Pele. While he was surely a truly superb player, it is more the general consensus than actual analysis that has led to that opinion. And much in the same way, if you ask a casual music fan which is the best Smiths album, they would say The Queen Is Dead. The genuinely knowledgeable football fan, however, would claim that Diego Maradona is the best player of all time, just as the more devout music fan would plump for Meat Is Murder.

Meat Is Murder stands apart from the rest of The Smiths’ cannon, in that for all the introspection and doom of the debut, the kitchen sink gloominess of The Queen Is Dead and the Walker Brothers-esque gothicness of Strangeways Here We Come, this album is by far their noisiest, fastest and heaviest and there’s a reason for that. Morrissey may be the look-at-poor-me focal point of everything The Smiths ever did, but make no mistake, this is Johnny Marr’s album.

Johnny Marr was influenced by the likes of Bert Jansch and John Renbourn as well as the classic songwriters such as Ellie Greenwich, Jeff Barry, Leiber and Stoller and Burt Bacharach, and it came through on the debut and on Hatful Of Hollow, were the tunes are to the fore and there is such a wonderful array of melody. On Meat Is Murder, however, he is indulging his obsessions with Keith Richards, Jimi Hendrix and Tom Verlaine, and The Smiths would never sound like this on any other record they made. What She Said, for a start, is one of the fastest guitar riffs of all time. So fast, in fact, that the intro sounds like the rest of the band are struggling to keep up. That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore is one of the bleakest songs ever written and that is down to the harrowing spiral of the music rather than a no more than averagely miserable lyric from the Moz.

That is not to say Morrissey doesn’t contribute, far from it. The first three songs are superb examples of his acerbic lyrical humour, a style which no-one has ever replicated, and on How Soon Is Now? which wasn’t included on the original vinyl pressing, he successfully converts his inability to pull in discos into a Wildean lament. Fair enough, he makes a show of himself with the sanctimonious preaching of the title track, but you don’t have to listen to that. Instead, listen to his magnificent vocal on Well I Wonder, and enjoy the best work of the best electric guitarist that England has ever produced, only Richard Thompson comes close. And watch the following video to see the coolest footage of any musician ever. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c9VVVqN_PJ4

In my opinion, The Smiths are the greatest band that ever wrote, recorded and played. But, much like The Kinks, they never produced that genuine eleven out of ten masterpiece. That is because they had too much material too soon; had they taken more time, they could have stuck London and Rubber Ring on this album and booted the quality through the roof, but youthful naivety and the enormous splurge of ideas they had meant it wasn’t to be so calculated. It doesn’t matter though, because this is still the strongest set in the Morrissey/Marr cannon.

A parting thought; When Johnny Marr wrote this album, he was twenty-one years old. When Oasis released Supersonic, Noel Gallagher was twenty-six. What exactly kept him?

Best Tracks:
I Want The One I Can’t Have, What She Said, That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore
Best Moment: 3:52 into That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore; just when you thought the horror was over…
Like this? Try: This Year’s Model by Elvis Costello (1978)

profile b and wAllen Miles is 33 years old and lives in Hull. He is married and has a 3 year-old daughter who thinks she’s Elsa from Disney’s Frozen. He is a staunch supporter of Sheffield Wednesday FC and drinks far too much wine. He spends most of his spare time watching old football videos on youtube and watching 1940s film noir. He is the author of This Is How You Disappear, which is widely recognized to be the best book ever written. It is available here. http://tinyurl.com/disappear2014

Al’s Top 30 Albums Of All Time – No. 16

Number 16. The Stone Roses – The Stone Roses (1989)

stone_roses

Madonna once came out with a great soundbite about pop music, which I can’t remember word for word, but it went something like “There is no better way to get into people’s hearts than writing a great melody.” If this is true, then it is one of the great mysteries of the world that The Stone Roses didn’t become the biggest band in the history of the universe. Beatles aside, who obviously did become the biggest band in the history of the universe, there has never been a band to record has many purely tuneful songs as The Stone Roses did on this album.

For a debut, it is incredibly confident, almost to the point of naivety, but there are moments on this album that, like certain songs in the repertoires of Oasis, The Flaming Lips and Michael Jackson, just defy any kind of negativity. They drew the confidence from the positivity, swagger and optimism of their own songs. The three big British indie bands of the eighties before the Roses hit were The Smiths, The Fall and The Jesus and Mary Chain, all bands who would revel in the bleaker side of music, and in the case of the latter two, aggressively so; and the relentless colour and vibrancy of this album, along with the fact that everyone had started taking ecstasy, is the reason that it is thought of as such a ground-breaking set.

I Wanna Be Adored, the first track on here, features possibly the greatest intro of all time. A minute or so of Eraserhead soundtrack-type chugging, then an intricate arpeggio based on a Celtic scale, then the best snare drum thwack since Like A Rolling Stone. As a statement of intent, it has no rival. Then they up the ante with She Bangs The Drums, a deceptively simple song based on a classic sixties E D A chord sequence, made unique by its fantastic Motown-derived bassline, and fittingly the lyrical proclamation “The past was yours but the future’s mine.” Everything just fits perfectly. Ian Brown, later derided for the weakness of his voice, is absolutely right for this album. His sonorous murmur adds to the ambience of the songs and brings a sense of unity rather than the pretension that a Morrissey or Tim Booth would bring.

For me personally, this is an album drenched in nostalgia. I first heard of The Stone Roses after hearing John Squire on the Oasis Knebworth show and asking my musical guru mate Mikey Jarrell who he was, and I twagged off school for the first and only time to go and buy this album the next day. From the age of sixteen to about twenty-four, Waterfall, Made Of Stone and I Am The Resurrection would be on constant rotation, whether on a knackered ghetto blaster at a house party, blaring out at an indie disco as we held our bottles of Reef aloft on the dancefloor, or being hummed by some bloke I met at work who calls himself Xavier Dwyer these days.

They blew it, obviously. Manchester bands all blow it. Joy Division, The Smiths, The Happy Mondays, Oasis… they all blew it. Dunno why. You don’t need to buy Second Coming, it’s not very good (response, Mr Taylor.) You should maybe track down the Fools Gold EP, Ten Storey Love Song and Sally Cinnamon on single, but primarily you just need this album. You’ll find some of the best melodies ever written, and songs that promise a future of endless dancing, bright colours and fresh fruit for everyone. And all those promises are here on one gloriously shiny little disc.

 

Best Tracks: I Wanna Be Adored, Bye Bye Badman, This Is The One

Best Moment: 1:29 into I Wanna Be Adored. The incendiary snare drum. The aural equivalent of a boot up the arse.

Like this? Try: A Northern Soul by The Verve, 1995

profile b and wAllen Miles is 33 years old and lives in Hull. He is married and has a 3 year-old daughter who thinks she’s Elsa from Disney’s Frozen. He is a staunch supporter of Sheffield Wednesday FC and drinks far too much wine. He spends most of his spare time watching old football videos on youtube and watching 1940s film noir. He is the author of This Is How You Disappear, which is widely recognized to be the best book ever written. It is available here. http://tinyurl.com/disappear2014