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Earthbound: The Bakerloo Line (Penguin Underground Lines) Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
I take it all back having read this. It's a terrific little book that distills his passion, his wit, and his wonderful way with words into a short narrative that is, at once, about him, the history of the Bakerloo line, the experience of using the Tube, the thoughts that that experience can give rise to, the recent history of music, the impact of technology and, finally, the Krautrock group Can.
If that sounds off-putting then this is probably not the book for you. Personally, I love the way it makes unexpected connections. I could be pretentious and say it's a big Krautrock riff that simultaneously quotes and recomposes different styles of music - but in more straightforward terms it's simply a very carefully considered, well-written and charming book. And a great one, needless to say, to be read while travelling by Tube.
As with several of the other books in this series, a description of the line is offered, but is used principally as a hook for enticing insights into the writer's life, and Morley gives us a real treat, with a brief history of the personal stereo (from his first Walkman, brought back from Japan by his girlfriend at a time when they were absolutely unknown in Britain, through to the iPod and MP3 players.
As one would expect, he also writes eloquently about the music he would listen to while travelling the few stops along the Line from Swiss Cottage or Finchley Road (now, of course, to be found on the usurping Jubilee Line) into the city centre), including a detailed history of the experimental rock band Can (whom I had never heard of before).
As it happens, despite having lived in London for thirty years now I have very few experiences of travelling on the Bakerloo Line, apart form the odd jaunt from Embankment to Paddington when rushing to get a train out West, but having enjoyed this informative and engaging little book I shall make a point of travelling on it much more often.
Paul Morley combines his early years in writing for the NME with the arrival of the Sony Walkman cassette player in this journey into adulthood (of sorts) .
A thoroughly enjoyable read !
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Earthbound is a rather nicely balanced account of the music that the author, then a writer for the NME, listened to and was influenced by as he used the Bakerloo Line. Read morePublished on 6 Oct. 2014 by Stewart M
Having now read 5 of the series associated with different lines of the Underground this is definitely one of the better ones! Read morePublished on 23 Feb. 2014 by MR JOHN S CAMPBELL
I have read Paul Morley for years. This piece is a good way to get a grasp of his personal view on London, esoteric music and the ways in which we consume culture. Read morePublished on 22 Aug. 2013 by G. Chaplin
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