Back To the Writing Page

Amusing Music Reviews

Some old music magazine album reviews that I found amusing

AC/DC's "Ballbreaker" - "Represents their first concerted effort since 1979 to attempt a decent play on the word 'testicle.' It has been produced by a man with a large beard, Rick Rubin, and, to be blunt, it rocks like a moderately aggressive bastard." (NME, 23 September 1995)

A-ha's "Scoundrel Days" - "The hotbed of talent that is A-ha continues to go unrecognized. The critics, the unbelievers, the philistines who see only the glossy posters and the fancy haircuts, will persist in sneering at these Scandinavian saucepots with all the insight and perception of a tree." (Sounds)

The Alarm's "Declaration" - "An album of slogans, power and promises but promises that mean nothing. Behind the groups revolutionary stance, the thoughts are about as radical as the conversation at a Tupperware party." (Record Mirror)

Damon Albarn's "Democrazy" - "If you went to a Marco Pierre White restaurant and ordered a steak au poivre with oyster juis and a drizzle of shredded lark?s tonsil gratinee and Marco just sloped out of the kitchen looking knackered, showed you a cow and shrugged, you wouldn?t tip the bugger, right? If you?d hired a master builder to add a replica Roman bath-house extension to your halls of residence shoebox and got left with a stack of plastic columns and a note saying ?we thought it?d be valuable to give you an insight into the construction process at the rawest level?, you?d get Watchdog on their arses on the spot, yeah? And if you paid good money for two limited-edition Damon Albarn 10"s and got 14 muffled bits of song ?segments? that he knocked off in a hotel bathroom in Nephewfuck, Arkansas while pissed, you?d horsewhip him back into the grand-a-minute Pro-Tools-U-Like mega-studio forthwith, hmm?" (NME, 13 December 2003)

Catherine Wheel's "Happy Days" - "You don't just listen to Happy get mowed down by it, then caught on its axle and dragged screaming for several blocks." (Musician magazine, 9/1995)

The Cure's "Pornography" - "It's downhill all the way, into ever-darkening shadows...passing through chilly marbled archways to the final rendezvous with the cold comfort of the slab." (Melody Maker)

Curiosity Killed the Cat's "Keep Your Distance..." - "We're dealing with the shallow meaningfulness and subdued bounciness of semi-clever pop. No doubt these are experiences drawn from real life, delivered straight from the soul the problem is that these are lives and souls that are fundamentally mediocre." (Melody Maker)

Curve's "Doppelganger" - "This crucial record pulls down my pants and taunts me." (Option magazine, 8/1992)

Falco's "Falco3 - "If this is album number three, it's already given me nightmares that the postman will turn up on my doorstep tomorrow morning and present me with the first two." (Melody Maker)

Frankie Goes To Hollywood's "Welcome To the Pleasuredome" - "It's a put-on and a con, a flim-flam scam of a sham, a hip hype calculated solely to separate as much money as possible from as many people as possible as fast as possible before all the young rubes wake up and realize they've been fleeced." (Creem)

The Human League's "Crash" - "I've tried it all ways, morning, noon and night, drunk and sober, alone and in company, searching for that wink of wit, that cheeky chortle, that look that says they know what they're doing and everything's OK and on line, but still Crash sounds crap." (Melody Maker)

Hydroplane's "We Crossed the Atlantic" single - "Much abstract female-led ambient mournfulness from Australia which recreates the exact clammy sensation of sitting in a rowing boat in a lake in the middle of a dense fog in a kangaroo costume. Actually, the costume isn't essential. The boat however, is." (Simon Williams, NME 16 Aug. 1997)

Jesus & Mary Chain's "Psycho Candy" - "Sounded exactly like they were coming through the w all with a Black & Decker. Bloody frightening." (Melody Maker)

Howard Jones's "Humans Lib" - "I can think only of a kid who's been given a Rolf Harris Stylophone for Christmas and thinks he's Gandhi." (Melody Maker)

Lightning Seeds's "Dizzy Heights" - "Durable, affordable, primary-colored and cherished by married couples, this is the pop equivalent of Ikea furniture, and, frankly, who's complaining..?" (Q magazine, 10/1999)

Alison Moyet's "Raindancing" - "This great white anserine blob called Alison surname designed to suggest champagne, a nuance of upward mobility (if you've got a crane handy) but never forgetting the common touch (she talks like an oik and her lyrics admit that men and women sometimes get into the same bed) doesn't she just remind you of a belch?" (Melody Maker)

The Power Station's "The Power Station" - "The album which proves that John 'Duran' Taylor is every micrometer the nouveau riche, styleless, vain young shitball he always hinted at." (NME)

Roxy Music's "Avalon" - "What does it all mean? I haven't the faintest fucking idea." (NME)

Scritti Politti's "Songs To Remember" - "Music for intelligent, sensitive and confused middle-class youth living in very small rooms." (NME)

Sigue Sigue Sputnik's "Flaunt It" - "They aren't really in it for the music, so they won't mind me pointing out that it's the biggest heap of garbage since the last heap of garbage." (NME)

Simple Minds's "New Gold Dream (81-82-83-84)" - "Cluttered, constipated, formulated fear straining for an arty fart." (NME)

The Smiths' "Meat Is Murder" - "He'll never convince me that one man's nut loaf isn't another man's baked nosepickings." (Sounds)

Spandau Ballet's "Diamond" - "Floydswill...awful, sub-Haircut by about eighteen good fathoms...the worst tune I have ever clapped oversized ears a Hoover doing an impersonation of Shirley Bassey...a puke in every groove. Not so much pretentious as unlistenable. At least we can all stop pretending to hate Spandaus and start really hating them." (Sounds)

Tears For Fears's "The Hurting" - "The perfect group for all those fucked up, 'what are we going to do with our lives' student types who spend every moment wrapped up in their tiny problems and pathetic existence." (NME)

Thompson Twins's "Into the Gap" - "All they need now is the dog and I do believe they'd turn into the Archies." (Melody Maker)

with acknowledgement to the places I found these, including Popdose and the old Muse album review machines.

Back To the Writing Page