Shall we talk about music for a bit?
I have a real urge to get back to basics here after the excitement of the last couple of days.... no photos, I promise.
The producers of Friday Night with Jonathan Ross made a great decision on Friday - they booked Coldplay to perform, and those crazy rock n'rollers, Vince Neil and Tommy Lee of Motley Crue only got to perform like seals in an interview. It won't come as a surprise to anybody, but they're not the sharpest tools in the box. If the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world that he didn't exist, then the greatest trick Motley Crue ever pulled is convincing anybody that they are a legendary rock band.
Are they bollocks.
They were rubbish then, and I have no doubt at all that they are rubbish now. They always struck me as a kind of Poison-lite, if you can imagine such a thing. You don't get Bill & Ted gaining entry into heaven quoting the lyrics from Dr. Feelgood at God, do you?
Bill S. Preston Esq: He's the one they call Dr. Feelgood. He's the one that makes you feel alright.
Ted Theodore Logan: He's the one they call Dr. Feelgood. He's gonna be your Frankenstein.
God: Bugger off
A lot of noise about their lifestyle masking an almost complete lack of talent.
Of course, it's their lifestyle, more specifically a book talking about their lifestyle, that has brought them back. They're currently in Europe on tour (hence their appearance on a chat show). Oh what jokers though. We saw some footage of crazy ol' Tommy Lee putting himself through the X-ray machine at customs! There is a section on their show called "Tommy's Titty Cam" where Tommy persuades female fans to show the audience their breasts!
Totally bonkers mad, mate.
Mind you, we did learn that Vince Neil's most recent wedding was performed by none other than MC Hammer. How cool is that? This nugget led to the following exchange between Jonathan Ross (who can't pronounce the letter 'R') and Vince Neil (who can't spell it):
Ross: how did you know he was the right man for the job?
Neil: he's not a white man
He wasn't making a joke. Ross had to explain his speech impediment.
Coldplay were much better. They performed three songs: current single "speed of sound", "in my place" and "fix you". The last one in particular is fantastic, with some lovely church organ style keyboards, and the refrain:
"and the tears come streaming down your face
when you lose something you can't replace
when you love someone but it goes to waste "
That one's going to be massive. Mark my words.
As has been said elsewhere, Chris Martin is never going to be cool, but he definitely has something about him. I like the fact that he isn't so far up his own arse that he isn't able to take the piss out of himself. The band gave Jonathan Ross a signed copy of the Crazy Frog single, and Martin threw in a bit of "ring-a-ding-dinging" during all of the band's three songs, which I thought was very funny (although by time he did it for the third time, perhaps he was protesting a little bit too much?)
What do I think of the album? Early days yet. Standouts for me so far are 'Square One' (although as statements of intent go, it's no 'Politik'), 'Fix You', 'Talk' (the one with the Kraftwerk riff), 'Speed of Sound' and 'X&Y'. As with "A Rush Of Blood to the Head", the last few songs on the album don't seem quite as good as the first few. It's also apparent that Chris Martin has lyrical themes that he can't get away from: things are broken and can't be fixed, puzzles are missing pieces, there are lots of unanswered questions. As Lord B pointed out, they're his equivalent of Bono's bullets ripping the desert sky.
It's harsh to judge an album on only a few plays though, and my overall impression is good. It's far too early to hail this as a classic though (as almost every single review I have read has done). I really want this to be a classic album, but only time will tell.
When Jonathan Ross finished, I flicked the telly over to fall asleep in front of "Later...with Jools Holland". At its best this can be a fascinating mix of bands and a really good place to discover new music. At its worst though, it can be smug muso back-slapping (when I tuned into this last week, they had the Kaiser Chiefs as their headline act, and Van Morrison whining about how the bastards were stabbing him in the back... again). This week had, amongst others, New Order and the Coral. I have a real blind spot for The Coral - I assume they are shite, and have avoided them on that basis, although I actually quite like their current single. Are they any good? I really want to hate them.
James Blunt was also on. I've heard the name, but this was the first of his stuff that I have actually heard. My first impression was poor - I thought he had a terribly affected voice - but on reflection I think he was just nervous. I've heard a couple of songs since, and a whole lot of TV advertising (clearly the record company is thinking he may be the new Damien Rice). I'm thinking of giving him a go, actually.
Any thoughts? Anyone got the album? Is he on at Glastonbury?
I also bought the new White Stripes album, but I haven't had a chance to listen to it at all yet... although I'm liking Jack White's flamenco-goth look. Classy.
This is going to be my last post about Coldplay for a little while. I promise.
At least until I get back from Glastonbury, anyway.
Look at that. A whole post and no pictures. I think it's safer that way, don't you?
Reading to escape
5 days ago