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Exile On Coldharbour Lane
Exile On Coldharbour Lane
Price: £6.52

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Get Converted…, 4 May 2004
I couldn’t help thinking that 5 years after its original release this was going to sound rather dated. When the band themselves describe this CD as Country-Acid-House Gospel music you can’t help but fear that it’s all going to sound a bit of a mess in 2004.
Not a bit of it though. And then you realize that it could never sound dated. It was unique when it came out and it remains so now. If it does have a problem it’s that it has a slightly comedic feel to it, almost spoof like. A shame really because most of the music here is actually quite beautiful.
You can start off quite jaded but as soon as the opener ‘Converted’ kicks in you’re starting to sway. The most beautiful track here is ‘Speed Of The Sound Of Loneliness’, listening to this you realise that it just doesn’t matter if music is hip or trendy. You just have to ask ‘Is it any good?’ After its use in ‘The Soprano’s’ you should really be sick of ‘Woke Up This Morning’ but it still works powerfully. The cacophony which introduces ‘Mao Tse Tung Said’ shows a funky side almost reminiscent of ‘My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts’ by Byrne & Eno, and the Grand Ole Opry would no doubt cry out for something like the Nashville sound of ‘The Old Purple Tin’. Tragically ‘The Night We Nearly Got Busted’ is not a song about an almost successful attempt at kidnapping a boy band.
Mr. Cynical (that’s me by the way) was honestly expecting this CD to sound horribly embarrassing, and to be well past its sell by date. That it doesn’t is a credit to the originality on display here, and although the album does tail off towards the end, you’re always left with a smile on your face.

by Paul Morley
Edition: Paperback

32 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing Ever Lasts Forever, 3 May 2004
This review is from: Nothing (Paperback)
I ended a relationship last night. I’m grieving. Like the best relationships we had so much in common, we laughed at the same things, and when we thought about the hopelessness, and the sadness of so many people around us, we wept together.
Like the most powerful relationships we were meant to be together. Two people on this planet destined to be together, and, against all the odds, we discovered each other. We weren’t even together for very long. Just a couple of weeks. Sometimes I felt completely out of my depth. Sometimes I wondered what he saw in me. His mind was so open, too open, his mind sucked you in, consumed you, but it didn’t want to devour you. It wanted to show you so many things, in so many ways. It wanted to explain why it needed you; it wanted to explain so much. But it had to be sure you understood. So it couldn’t explain something once. If there were twenty-five different ways to see something it would have to describe to you all twenty-five ways. And possibly a twenty-sixth.
So I grieve. The relationship has finished. And I’ll never forget it. My relationship with ‘Nothing’ by Paul Morley has ended. The last page is turned. The book replaced on the shelf.
Never has a book affected me in such a glorious way. This is a beautiful book. Ostensibly about the suicide of Paul Morley’s father, it is also an autobiography. Key areas of Paul Morley’s life are examined, dissected and studied. Schooldays, trips to Casualty, the death of Ian Curtis, depression, trousers, Marc Bolan, Paddington Station, taxi drivers, and cleaning ovens. This is a work that despite its subject matter never, ever dissolves into sentimentalism. A book about loss that never loses its way. A book that says quite clearly ‘I love and miss my Dad’ without ever using phrases like that. A book that loves writing. Loves families. A book that you will love.
When Paul Morley wrote for the NME he used to infuriate me. Pretentious twaddle, I thought. Over verbose and under edited. And it was. And I was right. A review of Movement by New Order does not need to use a thousand words where three hundred will do. It’s an album review for heaven’s sake. But a book like this takes you on a journey. A long journey, but never drab. Morley’s literary deftness is an integral part of the journey. Paul Morley is the Eddie Izzard that doesn’t do stand-up. He comes into your home. He puts the kettle on and sits down. And he talks. And you don’t want him to stop. He may stretch your ability to comprehend what is being said, but you won’t care.
If you’re reading this review, then you are most probably toying with the idea of buying this book. Buy it, read it, and then spend the rest of your life remembering it. And smiling every time you remember it.
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