You want an intro? You got that in part one! Let’s get down to the dirty, sticky and dangerously unhygienic business:
This was an important year for me, this was when shit got real. Yeah, Labour won the election, which I was aware I was supposed to celebrate but not yet conscious enough to know exactly why, just that ‘our team won*. Princess Diana died, inspiring a nationwide reaction that even 13 year old Alex Palmer recognised as being a bit fucking much**. All that was meaningless background noise though, as most importantly 1997 was the year that I became really switched on to new music. Before this point, most of the albums I’ve listed would have been discovered by me later and posthumously lusted after in the kind of nostalgic necrophilia that I would later grow to despise. Yeah, sorry if you’ve already imagined me as an incredibly cool seven year old bopping his head to Soonby My Bloody Valentine. From this point on, these important albums in my life and personal development were pretty much all discovered as contemporaries. Seriously though, ‘It’s Great When You’re Straight… Yeah’ was the first CD that I ever owned. Yeah. I’m that cool/weird.
Yeah, sorry, no more Bumble Rumble. Possibly… ever…? Listen, I’ve pretty much decided that I hate Zero Hour dating- I happen to still believe that I’m relatively attractive, so to have an app on my phone that frequently reminds me that I’m actually not is not good at all for my already inflated yet easily pricked sense of self-esteem. For now, my official stance is that I know that I’m a highly fuckable piece of hunky man meat who could grind genitals with pretty much any woman he wants, but I just choose not to, OK?? The official stance is that I’ve decided to concentrate on the more important things in my life, such as this blog- which has never been more popular- and my actual job- which I’m technically supposed to be doing now*. Remember this blog? It used to be about music, didn’t it? I mean… kinda… Let’s do that again. Basically, it’s time for:
Just wanted a photo with my eyes in it. Have they always been that colour? More after the jump!!
I don’t mean to say ‘don’t answer that’ as a joke, like the answer would somehow be difficult to hear, it was an entirely serious suggestion. An order, really. It would really slow this entry down to a standstill were I to pause now to open it up for reader’s suggestions. It’s pretty much the definition of a rhetorical question, see? I’m not actually expecting you to answer, merely just asking it for dramatic effect. Do you see? Good.
Yaaaay!! A statistical breakdown of 2017’s albums!! Suddenly, all those wasted evenings desperately bashing out 1000 words of utter shite on Muna or something finally comes to fruition!! I get to do a mathematical breakdown of the findings!! Kinda get tired reading more than 100 words but enjoy looking at pretty pictures? Yeah, me too…
I like to think the 2017 Necessary Evil list has so far catered to a lot of different tastes and requirements:
You’ve had Mark Lenegan , for those who want gravelly voiced ginger reminding them of a time when rock music was really cool; you’ve had Lil Yachty, for those of you who want your hip-hop history disregarded and even defiled on top of saccharine pop beats; Lil Peep, for those of you who just want to soundtrack their own descent into drug-induced senselessness, overwhelmed by life’s cruel meaningless; Arca, for those of you who don’t really want to enjoy the music they listen to rather, have it drill its own importance into their cerebral cortex and splatter its definite artistic statement over the wall behind; and Björk, for the people who… erm… well I still haven’t quite figured out who that album’s for. Perhaps just Björk…
How much praise does Björk get, really? Even if she was canonised as a saint, even if Wednesdays were officially renamed Björkday in her honour, even if the queen read out her Christmas message wearing the swan dress that Björk wore to the 2001 Oscars, even if it were decreed that your first born child had to be thrown into the Icelandic volcano she lives in so she can feed upon it and give her blessings that the crops shall grow this year, even if we did all that I feel it wouldn’t be enough. Compare the respect and reverence meted out to Keith Richards, where every time he farts in the bath it’s reported as major news and a turning point in music itself, yet Björk- who is legitimately one of the best things ever!!- is looked upon as an elfin oddball who doesn’t do big enough choruses any more. Fuck them all: ‘Vulnicura’ (a portmanteau of the Latin words ‘vulnus’ and ‘cura’, or a ‘cure for wounds’, perhaps as close as Björk gets to a pun) is an absolutely stunning album, perhaps her best latter-day work (i.e.: the best album your Mum’s unlikely to own). For an artist that often deals with multi-layered meanings and interpretations, ‘Vulnicura’ is often disarmingly frank, despite the complex arrangements this is probably Björk’s most simple and nakedly emotional record- a break up album?? It works as a great companion piece to Sharon van Etton’s wondrous ‘Are We There’ album from last year, but while that record deals with the overbearing sadness of struggling along with a relationship slowly deteriorating, ‘Vulnicura’ is more of a grand outpouring of the lacerating emotions that commence when a relationship ends, yet is also cautiously optimistic about what the future may hold. It’s an absolutely astonishing piece of work, it’s actually quite awkward to place it on a list alongside albums with track titles like ‘Bang Me Box‘ and ‘Kookseverywhere!!!’
‘Fun’ Fact: Björk was conceived the day Malcolm X was assassinated, you do wonder what kind of things turn people on in Iceland.
I think it’s well established now that I’m generally made of much stronger stuff than you: See if you can survive the 10 minutes of ‘Black Lake‘