10 Miguel: War & Leisure

Awe and Pleasure

(Hate to Say I Told You So)

Alex

“Miguel is one of the faces of an enthralling new strand of R’n’B that has blossomed recently, a strand that never takes its eyes off its influences but still crafts music that represent new creative highs for the entire genre. I’m generally heterosexual and generally male, yet after listening to ‘Wildheart’ sultrily and explicitly dry hump my ear for 46 minutes I still became pregnant more than a dozen times and tweeted Miguel so many naked pictures I’m actually due in court a week next Tuesday. If he concentrated more on the brash and provocative modern rethinks of ‘Dirty Mind’ rather than AOR nonsense like face the sun(sic)’ then he could get amazing.”

In 2015 a influential yet outrageously (and intensely sexually) intoxicating up and coming writer wrote those words about Miguel’s previous album. That writer believed that they key to unlocking Miguel’s potential brilliance was to concentrate and focus his influences on compiling a modern update on Prince’s best works. That writer believed strongly that Miguel should always concentrate on the shagging-that was pretty much his calling card, after all- but he should look into more subversive ways of presenting his sexuality than the occasional one note dogged horniness of ‘Wildheart’. An aldum, lest we forget, contained tracks with titles such as Suck It Like It’s George C Suckington’s BirthdayTouch it, I Dare You (Eeeew! I Can’t Believe You Actually Touched It!I Don’t Have Any Serious Reservations About A Little Slap and Tickle (If You Catch My Drift) and PENIS!! FUCKING PENIS!!!! FANNY!!! (I’ll Have Some of That N’All)The writer was at pains to confirm just how amazing and important shagging was.

Well, and this revelation might blow your tiny and insignificant minds, that writer was I, reader. And I’m not too proud to admit I was wrong.

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12 The Magnetic Fields: 50 Song Memoir

Stephin Merrit’s Life, Ranked

(Wait, is it with an ‘i’?? I have been misspelling him my all life…)

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The best Magnetic Fields albums always come with a good, solid gimmick, don’t they?

We all know (and love. If you don’t love it we can never be friends. Or even sexual partners. Unless you have, like, really nice tits) ’69 Love Songs’, but there was also the brilliant ‘i’ (where every song began with said letter); the less brilliant ‘Distortion’ (where every song was layered with Jesus and Mary Chain levels of interference); ‘Love Gas from the Digestive Tract’ (which featured Stephin Merrit burping after every line); ‘Hank and Peggy’ (in which all 259 tracks were based on a separate ‘King of the Hill’ episode, which was a brilliant way of honouring one of the most underrated TV shows of all time which I’m totally going to steal!); and ‘Fabio’s Groove Ride’ (the tale of Fabio killing a goose while on a rollercoaster. No, I will never stop referencing that incident! It happened on this very day in 1999, have some fucking respect).

[I started this ‘review’ yesterday, so it’s now exactly 19 years and one day since it happened]

’50 Song Memoir’ is what it says on the tin, with each of it songs referring to a different year in Merrit’s life. Yes, there’s 50 songs, because Stephin Merrit always prefers to go absolutely gall bladder out when he’s got a gimmick he really likes.

It’s not as good as ’69 Love Songs’, because of course it isn’t as good as the best album ever with a number in its title, but it’s still an astonishingly strong collection. The highs are no way near the heights of ’69…’,

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but a far greater percentage of its songs are worthwhile: there are no piss-taking throwaways like Punk Love or Experimental Music Love and far less contrived arch jokes such as Love is Like Jazz. I might even argue that there are more great songs on ’50…’ than they are on ’69…’, but there’s nothing here anywhere near the sheer majesty of Busby Berkeley Dreams or The Book of Love or All My Little Words or The Death of Ferdinand de Saussure or I Don’t Want to Get Over You or I Shatter or…

[continues for several minutes]

I once had the brilliant idea of, instead of attempting a full Necessary Evil 2017 countdown of albums that I’ve barely lived with for three or four months, why not just have a top 50 of the songs on ’50 Song Memoir’, going into detail on all the topics and emotions brought up!? Pretty awesome, yeah?!

Unfortunately, I got that brilliant idea after I’d already started this stupid fucking list. I mean, I’m still going to do it, it just won’t be as good. Hope you’re all fine with that.

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32 Jay-Zed: 4:44

Poking a Hornets Nest for 444 Word

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“OJ like: ‘I’m not black I’m OJ’/OK…’

Firstly, if you even mention the OJ Simpson case to me, you automatically have my full attention. Ever since I watched the astonishing ‘OJ: Made in America’ documentary (kayfabe) last year In have come to realise that the story of the trial is in fact the most important news story in America in the latter half of the 20th century*, narrowly beating Fabio getting hit by a goose in 1999 whilst on a rollercoaster at Busch Gardens, Williamsburg (I cannot stop referencing that incident). This is chiefly because I finally realised why he was nicknamed ‘The Juice’, and concluded that’s definitely the best nickname ever (again, narrowly beating Fabio, whose nickname later became ‘The Goose’). I have seriously watched the entire season maybe 10 times, and if I ever learned of a cinema showing its full 467 minutes run time in one sitting (which has been done in the past) I would run there faster than The Juice himself running to score a lineback overtime dunk (I’m still not sure what sport he played) or, if you prefer your similes to be a little fruitier, I would run there faster that OJ Simpson ran from [DELETED ON LEGAL ADVICE] after he [DELETED ON LEGAL ADVICE] in his [DELETED ON DATED REFERENCE ADVICE]. Ooooooh, you’re a saucy one, Alex!

The line at the top of this ‘review’ is from the man himself and quoted in one of many album highlights The Story of OJ

The thing is…

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#ClickBait (wait, is that one word…?)

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