Author Topic: Band Biographies  (Read 33552 times)

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

  • a hopeless vanity... a stupefyingly futile conceit
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #150 on: May 20, 2020, 01:33:25 AM »
How about Simon Price’s Everything about the Manics. It’s interesting about their upbringing in Blackwood amid the miner strikes, and has some fascinating chapters about poor, clever Richey Edwards. It’s a passionate, overly ideological, somewhat pretentious book (which is, you know, fitting).

I've always meant to read that. I'm not a massive Manics fan, I like some of their stuff, but they're interesting people and Pricey is a great writer.

Captain Crunch

  • Twister, Dustbuster, Hospital Bed
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #151 on: May 20, 2020, 11:40:06 AM »
Same here, in fact I think it’s still in a pile somewhere...

I did read Withdrawn Traces: Searching for the Truth about Richey Manic last year as it turned up in the library.  The amazon reviews are pretty spot on; a very sad and interesting story which suffers from too much wool and sycophancy.  It does have an annoying tendency to get uncomfortably gossipy as well, fixating on his girlfriend’s weight and how she’s not traditionally pretty.  If it cut out the gossip, the wild speculation and the usual ‘he was just too sensitive for this world’ mantra it would be great.  And about 25 pages long. 

Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #152 on: May 20, 2020, 01:38:10 PM »
You should both give it a go. Yes, their discography is a mixed bag alright, but they’re literate and unusually articulate rock stars, so they're a good rock book subject. You could even find much of the book of interest without liking their music!

The Manics are the perfect subject for Price really with his approach to music and pop culture. The book’s Price’s attempt (a terrific one, imo) to write a rock book that’s more than just tedious biography and the usual litany of twatish behaviour.

Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #153 on: May 20, 2020, 03:01:08 PM »
I'm interested to read the Price Manics book too, and I'm definitely of the camp that finds them far more interesting as people and as interviewees than as a band. The music was always such a letdown compared to the quotes and the ideas. Will check it out.

iamcoop

  • Woaksyyyyy
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #154 on: May 20, 2020, 03:24:18 PM »
I would highly recommend getting a copy of Pricey’s Manics book if you can. It’s superb. I got my copy years ago when it was still in print but I think it fetches around £25 these days. If you can land a reasonably priced copy then get it.

Captain Crunch

  • Twister, Dustbuster, Hospital Bed
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #155 on: May 20, 2020, 06:07:02 PM »
I’m one of those people who just love The Holy Bible (probably my favourite album) and think everything is else is just ok.   The Richey book reminds you that as powerful as the album is, being immersed in that sort of thing for that long is enough to trouble the hardest of souls, let alone someone like Richey.  It’s also good at pointing out how their collective sense of humour is often overlooked, wilfully sometimes. 

Shameless Custard

  • PAUSE FOR THE JET
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Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #156 on: May 20, 2020, 08:25:11 PM »
I think Price has a new book out soon, though I don't know what it's about as he said it was too early to say on one of his Chart Music podcast appearances.

I think he's also mentioned maybe updating his Manics book, but of course that could be years off, if it ever happens.

'tis a good book though. I bought it about 2000, I'd guess, and wolfed it down over a few days. And I agree that it's not very gossipy or tabloidy, just a nice, very detailed, passionate look at their early career. I think it ends at This Is My Truth, doesn't it?

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

  • a hopeless vanity... a stupefyingly futile conceit
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #157 on: May 20, 2020, 08:50:53 PM »
I think Price has a new book out soon, though I don't know what it's about as he said it was too early to say on one of his Chart Music podcast appearances.

I'd put good money on it being the definitive Oasis biography. Either that or a book about B.A. Cunterson.

Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #158 on: May 21, 2020, 12:04:46 AM »
I’m one of those people who just love The Holy Bible (probably my favourite album) and think everything is else is just ok.   The Richey book reminds you that as powerful as the album is, being immersed in that sort of thing for that long is enough to trouble the hardest of souls, let alone someone like Richey.  It’s also good at pointing out how their collective sense of humour is often overlooked, wilfully sometimes.

It’s one of my favourites of all time too, and it’s probably their only album where the music catches up with the lyrics and ideas. The murky atmosphere, spikey post punk riffs and samples make such a powerful, devastating record.

I may have to read that other book. It’s all desperately sad about Richey, he seemed to be reaching artistic maturity in his lyrics with The Holy Bible. Who knows what other songs like “Yes”,” Faster” and “4st 7lbs” he might have penned. Sad.

I know what you mean about their humour. Nicky Wire did a nice podcast with Buckles a while ago, in which he's surprisingly warm and friendly!

Jockice

  • I really have red hair. And a **********.
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #159 on: May 21, 2020, 05:50:37 AM »
How about Simon Price’s Everything about the Manics. It’s interesting about their upbringing in Blackwood amid the miner strikes, and has some fascinating chapters about poor, clever Richey Edwards. It’s a passionate, overly ideological, somewhat pretentious book (which is, you know, fitting).

Yeah, that's a good one.

It was mentioned much earlier in this thread but has anyone read Truth And Beauty: The Story Of Pulp by Mark Sturdy? If so, what do you reckon? I think it's good but then I have some personal connections to it. Be nice to know what someone who knows neither the band nor the author reckons. Unless they hate it.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2020, 06:06:24 AM by Jockice »

dr beat

  • #TeamColourfield
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #160 on: May 21, 2020, 11:38:32 AM »
I'd put good money on it being the definitive Oasis biography. Either that or a book about B.A. Cunterson.

What the world desperately needs is the definitive story of Two Man Sound.

Fr.Bigley

  • Shall I boil this kettle dry?
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #161 on: May 21, 2020, 11:59:56 AM »
Spread those Mocha Cheeks: my time in the Punjab by captain Tom Moore.


Fr.Bigley

  • Shall I boil this kettle dry?
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #162 on: May 21, 2020, 12:00:41 PM »
I do apologise, I thought this was BANNED biography.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

  • a hopeless vanity... a stupefyingly futile conceit
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #163 on: June 01, 2020, 06:24:08 PM »
What the world desperately needs is the definitive story of Two Man Sound.

A BBC Four documentary in which Taylor Parkes goes in search of Two Man Sound would, I think, be one of the greatest television programmes ever made.

Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #164 on: June 06, 2020, 02:22:06 PM »
I've nearly finished reading Starman - David Bowie: The Definitive Autobiography, by Paul Trynka. It's pretty interesting, mainly because the subject led a pretty interesting life. I just read the chapter about the murder of John Lennon. This was striking because the book largely portrays Bowie as a distant, remote, perhaps even cold-blooded person who had transactional, manipulative relationships with most who fell into his orbit. His reaction to Lennon's death is one of the few times where a loss of control and an unbridled emotional reaction are described.

Quote
It was 8 December, exactly two weeks after The Times interview appeared, that May Pang called David Bowie’s Chelsea apartment to tell him she’d heard that John Lennon had been shot dead by Mark Chapman. Coco answered the phone. ‘David is out, on a date,’ she told May. ‘Get down here, now. You shouldn’t be alone.’

David arrived at the apartment around the same time as May. She remembers him screaming, ‘WHAT THE HELL, WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON WITH THIS WORLD!’ over and over, angry, devastated, numb. At times, for all of them, there were flashbacks, or momentary convictions that this was a prank, and hadn’t really happened; again and again they’d tell each other, ‘We have to be calm, we can’t let our emotions take over.’ After he’d screamed himself to a numb acceptance, David sat in front of the TV, absorbed by the news footage of distraught fans milling around The Dakota building and Central Park. He was still up when May Pang left the apartment around dawn. New York was strangely quiet as she walked home.

David played out most of the three remaining weeks of The Elephant Man, missing several nights. It was ‘awful, just awful’, he would explain two years later. ‘A whole piece of my life seemed to have been taken away; a whole reason for being a singer and songwriter seemed to be removed from me. It was almost like a warning.’ There were rumours, never substantiated, that Mark Chapman had attended a performance of The Elephant Man, or that he’d written down a list of targets which included David Bowie and Keith Richards. Whatever the truth, the murder of the one man in New York with whom he most identified left David with only one option: flight.

Dramatic stuff and also quite sad - you could say that about many moments in the Bowie story. Off the back of this, I've decided to read a Lennon biography next. I was thinking of John Lennon: The Life by Phillip Norman. Unless anyone wants to tell me it's shit and recommend another.


easytarget

  • five gas lighters for a pound
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #165 on: October 10, 2020, 06:40:57 AM »
Just finished the (audio) of Confess by Rob Halford. The Metal God (TM) from Judas Priest (and Fight (and 2wo)).
Very good. Down to earth, almost dour tales of coked up illicit gay sex, meeting The Queen (TM), making Turbo and getting sober.

Before that I done the (audio) of Rust in Peace: The Inside Story of the Megadeth Masterpiece by flame hair terrible human Dave Mustaine. Bitter. Bitchy. Somehow even though Dave is telling (most of) the story you find yourself on the side of his various antagonists. Good stuff if you want to know more about how Rust in Peace got made.

magval

  • Magnum Valentino
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #166 on: October 10, 2020, 07:14:43 AM »
Can you elaborate on the designation 'terrible human', there? I know Dave's always been insulted by people I know who like metal but I've never heard any REAL criticism of him.

I guess writing a book about the making of a measly one of your OWN ALBUMS might classify someone as a bit of a tit, like.

Famous Mortimer

  • War - it's fantastic!
    • International Syndicate of Cult Film Critics
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #167 on: October 10, 2020, 09:30:34 PM »
Can you elaborate on the designation 'terrible human', there? I know Dave's always been insulted by people I know who like metal but I've never heard any REAL criticism of him.

I guess writing a book about the making of a measly one of your OWN ALBUMS might classify someone as a bit of a tit, like.
He said Obama staged the Aurora shootings to bring in a Nazi state, apparently, with gun control and that (he was also a Birther). He's against marriage equality. If you choose to judge a person by the company they keep, he's been a semi-regular guest of Alex Jones and Fox News. Here's Oderus Urungus of GWAR's opinion:

Quote
"Every time he opens his mouth, he makes a f--king idiot out of himself," said Oderus. "You know what?! Keep your mouth f--king shut, Dave Mustaine. Play your f--king guitar, all right?! Maybe keep it to the lyrics of 'Peace Sells'. Anything else... We don't wanna f--king hear about how Obama was born in Africa and how Rick Santorum is your man; he hates f--king heavy metal. Shut the f--k up, Dave Mustaine. Shut the f--k up, you God, cock-sucking f-ggot."

Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #168 on: October 10, 2020, 11:55:40 PM »
Just finished Scar Tissue by Anthony Kiedis of them Red Hot Chili Peppers. Not entirely sure why I read it, never having been a particular Chili Peppers fan, though I've never loathed them as many do in the circles I move in, such as this one.

Fucking hell. On the basis of this book, Anthony Kiedis is the world's most airheaded narcissistic tosser. On the one hand, there's no particular focus or theme beyond covering everything that's happened in his life in a basically linear fashion, but two themes emerge basically by virtue of the sheer detail in which he covers them: he has had sex with every woman in the world, and he has taken every drug in the world.

He lists a litany of crimes committed during his adolescence, including assault and theft, but seems to have no sense of perspective about any of them. He doesn't say anything along the lines of "Boy, I was fucking insane!" or "I look back at this story and feel ashamed now", or anything like that. It's just "So I kicked the shit out of the guy and took his stuff so I could sell it for drugs." End of story.

Here's one excerpt I found astonishing:

Quote
The next day we drove to Baton Rouge, and of course, she came with us. After we got offstage, she came up to me and said, ‘I have something to tell you. My father’s the chief of police and the entire state of Louisiana is looking for me because I’ve gone missing. Oh, and besides that, I’m only fourteen.’ I wasn’t incredibly scared, because in my somewhat deluded mind, I knew that if she told the chief of police she was in love with me, he wasn’t going to have me taken out to a field and shot, but I did want to get her the hell back home right away. So we had sex one more time.

He explains that this encounter inspired the song Catholic Schoolgirls Rule. Badass!

This, from an account of his short-lived relationship with Sinead O'Connor, made me laugh out loud: "She just wouldn’t let me into her door, so to speak. And I don’t just mean vaginally."

There's very little on the business of actually making music. By far the most entertaining parts are his descriptions of being a smack addict in the late 90s, by which point he was a millionaire and superstar. At one point he booked himself into a luxury hotel suite and lived off heorin and room service for several weeks; when he got back to his mansion he found it completely empty. He had no idea what had happened and realised that he had put it on the market months ago, completely forgotten, and now it had been sold. On another occasion he breaks out of rehab, runs from the orderlies, walks into a car dealer and drives out with a new car, off to buy drugs. Wicked!!

easytarget

  • five gas lighters for a pound
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #169 on: October 11, 2020, 12:40:38 AM »
Can you elaborate on the designation 'terrible human', there? I know Dave's always been insulted by people I know who like metal but I've never heard any REAL criticism of him.

I guess writing a book about the making of a measly one of your OWN ALBUMS might classify someone as a bit of a tit, like.

FM nicely outlined all the political stuff that makes Mustaine the Morrissey of metal. If you want a cheaper answer: "He was too much of an asshole to be in Metallica, a band with Lars Ulrich as a member" ;)

Rust in Peace is a fucking landmark thrash record and totally deserves this level of examination (y'know if you're into that kind of thing). If you dig into it you'll also hear how dysfunctional and abusive his relationship with bassist Other Dave is and how he's super stingy with the song writing credits, dismissing any contributions by other band members - something like : "they were just in the room when I wrote all the riffs, maybe the people on the TV we were watching should get credit too".

Fucking awful man. Brilliant riff writer though.

 

magval

  • Magnum Valentino
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #170 on: October 11, 2020, 01:44:17 AM »
Illuminating. I like Dave Ellefson too, he seems like a much nicer guy.

Kiedis must be driven mental almost constantly by the gulf in talent between himself and his fellow band members. I know I'd have a complex if I was in his position with his ability.

Famous Mortimer

  • War - it's fantastic!
    • International Syndicate of Cult Film Critics
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #171 on: October 11, 2020, 05:13:42 AM »
Quote
The next day we drove to Baton Rouge, and of course, she came with us. After we got offstage, she came up to me and said, ‘I have something to tell you. My father’s the chief of police and the entire state of Louisiana is looking for me because I’ve gone missing. Oh, and besides that, I’m only fourteen.’ I wasn’t incredibly scared, because in my somewhat deluded mind, I knew that if she told the chief of police she was in love with me, he wasn’t going to have me taken out to a field and shot, but I did want to get her the hell back home right away. So we had sex one more time.
Ye gods.

SpiderChrist

  • "the law of averages says you'll survive"
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #172 on: October 11, 2020, 07:17:58 PM »

Captain Crunch

  • Twister, Dustbuster, Hospital Bed
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #173 on: October 12, 2020, 11:29:05 AM »
Just finished the (audio) of Confess by Rob Halford. The Metal God (TM) from Judas Priest (and Fight (and 2wo)).
Very good. Down to earth, almost dour tales of coked up illicit gay sex, meeting The Queen (TM), making Turbo and getting sober.

I saw that, I was going to wait for it to turn up in a charity shop but I’d be tempted by the audiobook if it’s Rob himself doing the talking? 

magval

  • Magnum Valentino
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #174 on: October 12, 2020, 01:10:53 PM »
My pal says it is, and it is for that reason the audiobook is the essential version.

easytarget

  • five gas lighters for a pound
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #175 on: October 12, 2020, 05:31:01 PM »
I saw that, I was going to wait for it to turn up in a charity shop but I’d be tempted by the audiobook if it’s Rob himself doing the talking?

I can also confirm that it is. He also patiently explains bits of specific west midlands slang to allow Americans to join in with the fun.


SpiderChrist

  • "the law of averages says you'll survive"
Re: Band Biographies
« Reply #176 on: October 21, 2020, 11:39:24 AM »
Steve Ignorant's autobiography The Rest Is Propaganda has just been re-printed and is currently sitting in my "to read" pile.

https://www.steveignorant.com/product/the-rest-is-propaganda-autobiography-by-steve-ignorant-with-steve-pottinger/

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