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Apathy for the Devil

Apathy for the Devil [Kindle Edition]

Nick Kent
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)

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Product Description


"", "25 Coolest Rock Memoirs"" The Onion's "AV Club, 9/1/10""Apathy" ping-pongs easily between personal reminiscences and more general overviews of rock's shape each year.""Goldmine"," "10/1"A vibrant story, an autobiography that never hits auto-pilot""Library Journal"," "9/24"A candid, graphic, and fascinating memoir of [Kent's] 1970s... Amazing true stories on every page... Highly recommended for anyone interested in the dark days of rock and in British rock journalism." "Hartford"" Advocate, "10/15/10"Nearly every page of "Apathy" contains a scene about which you find yourself muttering out loud, 'No way, ' and two pages later Kent has fleshed it out so completely that you can almost hear him responding 'Way'...If you ever wanted to be a fly on the wall to rock 'n' roll debauchery, Nick Kent is your man.""Buffalo"" News"""Apathy" is not some sordid tale of rockstar trainspotting...Kent mattered (and matters still) because he was a great writer, a passionate music love and a man able to tap into the cultural zeitgeist at will. Essential reading for anyone who cares about the rock culture of the '70s.""Glide Magazine," 10/27/10"[A]nyone who can write a memoir that includes folks like David Bowie, Chrissie Hynde, Lou Reed, and Keith Richards and never comes off as a name-dropper must be telling a pretty good story, wouldn't you say?""Milwaukee"" Shepherd Express," 11/8/10"[A] compelling page-turner and revealing look at the origins of heavy metal, space rock, glitter and punk.""Crawdaddy!, " 11/24/10"At once sentimental, salacious, and sometimes shocking slice of essential music memoir...If there is redemption in Kent's decade of groping in the dark, it's that he lived to illuminate it; his emotional appreciation of rock's art prevails over 30 years of chitchat and theory about it...A whistle blower and old-time investigative journalist, Kent fulfills a necessary function as truth teller in the f

Book Description

Sixteen years after his seminal rock tome The Dark Stuff, Nick Kent produces a brilliant and very personal despatch: his memoir of the 1970s.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 704 KB
  • Print Length: 419 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 057123285X
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber (4 Mar 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003FW3IMM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #168,904 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Cracked actor 3 Nov 2010
Along with Charles Shaar Murray and Ian MacDonald, Nick Kent was one of the finest writers contributing to the NME in the early/mid 70's, and the quality of their prose - opinionated, scathing, funny, knowledgeable - was the reason I would excitedly await the appearance of the paper every week. Of the three of them, Kent always stood out as the most extreme: authoritative in his pronouncements, vituperative in his put-downs and casually allusive in his references to obscure bands or albums. He also appeared to have an intriguing life away from the paper: I remember his emergence as a guitarist with his own band, just at about the same time as Chrissie Hynde - another NME writer - was putting The Pretenders together (the fact that his band immediately sank without trace did nothing to detract from the way in which the ultimate transition from writer to musician appeared to be apposite).

This memoir allows us to see just how intriguing that life really was. He describes his childhood, his early encounter with rock music and London's underground scene, being taken on by the NME (apparently, he was never on the staff, preferring to remain a freelancer) and meeting up with the stars of the day: the Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Led Zeppelin and Iggy Pop amongst others (including Chrissie Hynde, with whom he apparently had a brief romance). This is all good stuff (some of his articles have already appeared in his excellent collection The Dark Stuff), and he provides plenty of detailed anecdotes about his adventures (which continue into the latter part of the seventies, when he found himself briefly in an early line-up of the Sex Pistols).
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We have heard the chimes at midnight... 6 Mar 2010
I finished this book in two sittings. Not because it's superficial, but because it's positively riveting, at least
to music lovers who came of age with the golden age of the NME. Nick Kent may not have the quirkiness of a Lester
Bangs, but he wields equal authority, as the inevitable --though always very welcome -- list of favourite albums
and tracks at the end confirms. He is also refreshingly honest and suitably circumspect about his personal trials
and tribulations. For those yet to discover the true delights of rock/popular music (Stooges, MC5, Beefheart, Can, Al Green,
Television, VU, etc.) this will be an education; for those who have, it will call them back to why they love it all so much.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Poor him? 24 July 2011
The overall message from this book that I took was Nick pleading "I wasn't just a hanger-on, I wasn't just a hanger-on!", causing me to think, "Wait a minute, mate, Jagger, Richards, Stewart, Bowie, Bolan, Plant and Page, they had the talent and mystique. You were just a hanger-on, weren't you?" He was also a good looking boy, as the front cover attests, which no doubt helped him to hang on in there, defying Sting's cogent observation that all music journalists liked Elvis Costello because they all looked like him.
Kent, however, sees himself at pretty much the same level as the aforementioned rock gods, although he brandished a pen instead of a microphone. Or at least he'd certainly like to be at that level. He's just about self-effacing enough to get away with it, although there's a lot of "poor me" stuff that gets in the way of a decent yarn or vicious swipe. He makes the schoolboy error of being yet another guy who claims he gave Malcolm McLaren the inspiration for the term "punk rock", although he admits it was either him or the New York Dolls that did. Never mind the thousand other claimants, of course. To me, this just seemed like another desperate leap for significance, as much of the book does. I'd admit there are a mere handful of journalists who make a lasting impact through journalism, but it tends to be investigative journalism. No doubt Kent, Shaar Murray, Birchell, Morely et al would beg to differ of course.
And, to be fair, Kent has written books, and this one was pretty good. The book's chapters are done on a yearly basis as the decade of the seventies roll by, although the final two years, 1978 and 1979, are compressed into one. This is because, I suspect, the drug addiction was really taking its toll by then.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Paradoxically speaking... 11 Mar 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Back in the 70s, the NME was the epitome of cool with the most cutting edge writers who provided the most incisive social commentaries on what was probably one of the most diverse musical decades. Nick Kent was one of these young blades and at the time, was a major source of irritation to me. In particular, some of his barbed comments about Queen were guaranteed to set me off in a bout of teenaged high dudgeon.

However, he was articulate, intriguing and unpredictable, and this excellent memoir provides an extraordinary guide to the Zeitgeist. The music industry with all its excesses eventually consumed him in the most disturbing fashion and his descent into heroin hell is extremely painful reading. However, the book is full of flashing insights into some of the major players, his brilliant analysis of John Lennon being of the many highlights.

But Nick Kent still remains a huge paradox. How could of the most iconic music writers of that decade end up being one of its most celebrated victims? For that reason alone, Apathy for the Devil is a compulsive read and thank goodness he has lived to tell the tale.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read.
I came across this by accident and thought it might be worth a look - as I was a devotee of the NME around the early 70's. Read more
Published 1 month ago by MJP
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating
From the pen of one of rock music's finest journalists, a revealing insight into the 1970s music scene with all the excesses and heartbreak right there on his sleeve for all to... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Alpie
4.0 out of 5 stars Fab but sad
Nick Kent's 70s memoir starts out strong and splendid, with sparkling writing and laugh-out-loud turns of phrase. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Mr. Toby Howard
4.0 out of 5 stars The Sixth Pistol's Seventies Story
In one of the early chapters of Nick Kent's musical history (and his story) of the Seventies, the author talks about how he had to teach a pre-Sex Pistols Malcolm McLaren... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Roger Risborough
5.0 out of 5 stars The truth about the 70's rock scene
What a great read this is. I remember Nick Kent from the days of the NME - I must have started reading it in about 1971. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Mr. H. F. Sims
5.0 out of 5 stars Sex Pistols - The Truth
Nick Kent sets the record straight regarding the early days of the Sex Pistols, for me, the book's is worth it for these facts alone. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Garry Borland
1.0 out of 5 stars deja vu
Couldn't wait to get into this book when I had it bought for me at Christmas. I'm a rockist - for me the seventies was the golden age of music. Read more
Published on 5 Mar 2012 by bocebi
4.0 out of 5 stars Apathy for the Kindle
I enjoyed the book. I've always liked Nick Kent's writing, ever since I first started reading the NME as a teenager. Read more
Published on 3 Mar 2012 by J. R. Clarke
4.0 out of 5 stars Compelling memoirs
Nick Kent was an English journalist with the New Musical Express, a weekly publication that I used to devour in the 1970s when I first became enthralled by rock music, a passion... Read more
Published on 26 Dec 2011 by Douglas
1.0 out of 5 stars Rock's old cliches
Nick Kent used to visit my record shop in the 70s and 80s and his stories about the Stones are better than anything I've seen in print. Read more
Published on 7 Sep 2011 by Cwynarski
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