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Now I remember why I hated Wah!
on 17 April 2001
I grew up in Liverpool. Vinyl singles of "seven minutes to..." were my adolescence. Suffering something of a Nick Hornby moment, I ordered the whole and entire back catalogue of my youth, on CD.
There are still great songs on here - but nothing can hide the basic egomania, the overwhelming narcissism, and the fact that - to be blunt - this just isn't very good music. On a scratchy 45 in a teenage bedroom, these were as vital (in a rather art-college way) as the Specials or the Clash. Now, in the higher fidelity of my middle-aged spread, I can just hear the ragged sound and the thinness of it all.
If Wylie had a bit more of a studio budget, some of these might have made Queen songs. A better engineer; someone who knew how to get that real poodle-rock stadium sound, and they might even have cut it as U2 out-takes.
You can't go back.