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Simon Price - WRITING

Daisy Chainsaw Melody Maker front coverThe long-term plan is for this page to become a thorough archive of my writing, going back 30 years. That, however, is a major project, so please bear with me. For the moment, I'll put up a few links to articles that are already online.

Note: ALL articles are copyright Simon Price. Permission, and payment, will be required for re-use in any professional publication or on any professional website. If in any doubt, please contact the author. (However, I'm generally happy for my work to be shared on amateur blogs, band websites and unofficial fan sites, within reason.)


Duran Duran on being snubbed by Dylan, riding rutting elephants and wearing pink trousers (2015) - "I think it was the mating season..."
The Joy Of Goth: How Sad Music Can Help Your Mental Health (2015) - "Nothing a cheap pint of snakebite & black couldn't cure..."
Alvin Stardust - A Man Who Knew How To Give Good Creepy (2014) - "The most British thing that's ever happened..."
Arctic Monkeys: From Men Of The People To Tax Dodgers (2014) - "Ironically, if anyone could afford a glass ceiling, it was Turner..."
Is Brighton Really Britain's Worst Holiday Resort? (2013) - "A last enclave, holding out against an engulfing tide of evil..."
Violence Against Goths Is A Hate Crime (2013) - "These days, if anyone asks, I tend to say I'm a 'recovering goth'..."
Smooth Operator: Bryan Ferry's High-Class Act (2004) - "Half Brideshead/Gatsby dandy, half Klingon chieftain..."
Why Sheffield? (2004) - "Grim surroundings, it seems, invariably give birth to futurism, to art which aspires towards utopia..."
Beats Working... Har Mar Superstar packs for Ibiza (2003) - "I do have a leotard with my face on the crotch..."
A Coo For Diplomacy - Eurovision's lobbying circus (2003) - "A world of white tuxedos and Ferrero Rocher piled in high pyramids..."
Our Manics In Havana (2001) - "Cuba is to the US what the Manics are to the music business: a thorn in the side, an island of dissent..."


The Independent's website is unbelievably crap and user-unfriendly, but this carefully-tailored Google Search ought to take you to most of my many hundreds of Independent On Sunday articles, in reverse date order, from 2013 back to around 2004. (Sadly, the stuff from 2001-2004 seems to have vanished off the face of the internet.) Alternatively, this Journalisted Search throws up most of the same stuff, back to about 2007. I'll also be adding scans, as and when I find them (or create them myself), for example...

Pet Shop Boys, Robin Thicke and Thee Faction albums reviewed (2013) - "It revisits the familiar PSB theme of people living glittering but glass-fragile lives..."
Stevie Nicks interviewed, Part 1 (2011) - "If Stevie Nicks, poet-sorceress of the popular imagination, is ever off-duty, she won't let it show."
Stevie Nicks interviewed, Part 2 (2011) - "No matter how many children or grandchildren you have, Lindsey, I'm always gonna be there..."
Thee Faction - Live At Ebbw Vale reviewed (2010) - "Rudely welding to rhetoric to rhythm & booze..."


Scanning in my old Melody Maker pieces is a monster of a task, and may take longer than the years I have left on earth. However, several of them can already be found at the excellent Archived Music Press site (link takes you directly to all my stuff), as well as many excellent pieces by my Maker colleagues. My god, I was a vicious little bastard then, and some of this stuff makes me cringe (for all sorts of reasons), but you can't rewrite history...

Mudhoney, Tad and Nirvana live review (1989) - "Skynyrd without the flares, Sabbath without the Aleister Crowley books..."
David Bowie live review (1990) - "In the age of weekly Phil Collins retrospectives, don't we need monstrous artistic conceit more than ever?"
Morrissey live review (1991) - "This was Male Lib: liberation from the prevailing Americanised ideal of thrusting, healthy, socially competent masculinity."
Carter The Unstoppable Sex Machine live review (1991) - "After a while, it's little more than Little & Large with a strobe light."
Pigskinheads: Suede's first-ever interview (1992) - "The idea that some 14-year-old kid in Bolton could be crying to our records is fantastic."
Manic Street Preachers interview at "You Love Us" video shoot (1992) - "Richey's arm was our Altamont..."
Lenny Kravitz live review (1993) - "Like a Seventies cartoon character, or a Shetland pony, Lenny Kravitz appears to have flared legs..."
The Boo Radleys - Learning To Walk reviewed (1993) - "Even after the Nurembergian Shoegazing Backlash, they're the band from 1991 it's OK to like..."
Coolio - It Takes A Thief reviewed (1994) - "A sort of benign beach bum, interested only in getting blunted on chronic..."
They Amphetamine It, Maaaan: These Animal Men interviewed (1994) - "Amphetamine culture is like... You know when old guys say 'What we need is a good war?'"
Gene - Olympian reviewed (1995) - "Far from being the Charles Hawtreys you unbelievers seem to evisage, there's something satisfyingly robust, hearty, earthy about Gene."
Look Back In Languor - The Boo Radleys interviewed (1995) - "Paul McCartney's got Buddy Holly's bed in his back garden, in a bubble. Nick Heyward told us that."
Backlash letters page (1995) - "Romo-ism is, defiantly, AGAINST NATURE. The Romo moment is the moment you set fire to the hand of cards you were dealt at birth."
Minty live review (1995) - "I hear a rhino on stiletto heels, The Flying Lizards, that wind tunnel noise from Dr Who, The B-52's, breaking glass (I love that sound)..."
Underworld - Second Toughest In The Infants reviewed (1996) - "First, I took it flying Business Class over some snowy mountains, then I took it late night shopping in Safeway..."
The Divine Comedy - Casanova reviewed (1996) - "His saucy affectations (a beautifully-timed 'Wey-hey', a Listerine dragon 'Hel-lo', a presumptuous 'Your place or mine?')"


Squeeze - Cradle To The Grave album review (2015) - "Few songwriters alive can touch them for narrative detail and emotional insight..."
Chvrches live review (2015) - "It takes a great deal of charm to overcome an annoying name..."
New Order - Music Complete album review (2015) - "The headline around New Order's tenth album is that Peter Hook is gone. It ought to be that Gillian Gilbert is back..."
Lana Del Rey - Honeymoon album review (2015) - "Del Rey is a living lesson in picking your aesthetic, sticking to it, and steadily perfecting it..."
Bring Me The Horizon - That's The Spirit album review (2015) - "The softening of the BMTH sound will have metallers shaking, rather than banging, their heads..."
Prince - HITNRUN album review (2015) - "This notorious control freak is opening up to outside influence..."
Duran Duran - Paper Gods album review (2015) - "Duran Duran have stopped fighting their history, and started having fun with it..."
John Lydon interview (2015) - "You could pick up these scents. It's amazing how capable a young nostril is." (NB: full transcript, not published version)
Foals interview (2015) - "It's economic enslavement. Or economic occupation, basically..."
Nero live review (2015) - "The disciplined clatter of the beats, and basslines that made your clothing flap..."
Sugarhill Gang feat Melle Mell & Scorpio live review (2015) - "More padding than an ice hockey goaltender..."
Years & Years interview (2015) - "I'm not standing on a podium delivering rhetoric. I'm just trying to be part of something... better"
FFS (Franz Ferdinand Sparks) live review (2015) - "...a McBusted for grown-ups, anyone?"
Charli XCX live review (2015) - "from a Poundland Peaches to a K-Mart Ke$ha..."
Prince & 3rdEyeGirl live review (2015) - "It's all too tempting the theorise. A shy, awkward loner as a youth and an obsessive, meticulous perfectionist as an artist..."
Independent Venues Week article (2015) - "Venues which, unlike the chains, aren't beholden to the cabals and cartels of the biz..."
Bjork - Vulnicura album review (2015) - "As if love can be plotted and measured with the precision of maps and clocks..."
Morrissey live review 2014 - "But that love - unconditional and uncritical - is the very thing that's killing him as an artist..."
Nile Rodgers And Chic live review (2014) - "The Indigo2 is the real 'room without a roof' - Nile Rodgers has torn it clean off."
The Libertines live review (2014) - "One of those rare bands who can change the way you walk, talk, dress, behave, and - crucially, here - misbehave."


Jarvis Cocker And The Art Of Blasphemy (2013) - "For anyone who had their young mind mangled by religion, it's not only a right - it's a solemn duty."


BANKS live review (2014) - "a Lorde without the awkward outsiderdom, a Lana without the troublesome vintage baggage, a Grimes without the weirdness"
Temples live review (2014) - "You could set your calendar by it, if not quite your (chocolate) watch..."
How My Research Into Pop's Posh Takeover Was Hijacked (2014) - "Like a rookie cop in a police procedural, I almost blew the whole case..."


Little Boots - Working Girl reviewed (2015) -"A concept album about the eternal tensions between employment and enjoyment..."
Eccentronic Research Council featuring Maxine Peake - Magpie Billy & The Egg That Yolked (A Study Of The Northern Ape In Love) reviewed (2014) -"It teeters unsettlingly at the point where anthropology becomes zoology..."


Into A Time Slip: The Rocky Horror Picture Show Turns 40 (2015) - "The whole country, after a jump to the Left, was taking a step to the Right..."
Petal Machine Music: Hurts live in Berlin (2015) - "Hurts clear out a hectare of Holland nightly."
We Talked Of 'Was' And 'When': Tony Visconti interviewed (2015) - "Marc Bolan would never adapt. When he was on form he'd innnovate and make others copy him..."
Heroes Of A Parallel Present: British Sea Power live (2015) - "Trevor Howard virtues. David Niven virtues."
Arcadia vs The Power Station (2015) - "One was ultra-arty, the other thunkingly blunt. Beauty, and the Beast."
Let's Talk About Death: Marc Almond interview (2015) - "Pissed again, and it's only 11 o'clock in the morning!"
Girls Don't Cry: Rumer's favourite albums (2014) -'You're fat and you're ugly and you can't sing...' Once you've read that 20 times, it's like 'Oh this is just so childish'.”
Noise Is The Beauty: The Jesus And Mary Chain live (2014) - "Jim Reid is the anti-frontman: when he's into it, he gets LOW."
A Fist In Time: Billy Idol live (2014) - "I can't get it out of my head, every time he gives us that clenched five-finger salute. I know where it's been..."
Different Men: Culture Club live (2014) - "You don't need to squint too hard for that 'Oh my god, it's actually him' moment..."
The First Lady Of Southern Soul: Candi Staton interviewed (2014) - "The world has gone nuts. Evil is lurking everywhere..."
The Jesus Of Uncool: Jeff Lynne's E.L.O. live (2014) - "It's been, in the best possible way, Like Punk Never Happened."
An Ultrahuman: Kate Bush live (2014) - "Raised by doctors and nuns, poised between the rational and irrational..."
Manic Street Preachers: Futurology reviewed (2014) - "Futurology resolutely lives up to every claim made for it by the bigmouth on the bass"
Talker Of The Town: Chrissie Hynde interviewed (2014) - "Glamour is the way you stand..."
Digging For Fire: Pixies Beyond The Hits (2014) - Simon contributes the sections on "Dead", "Isla De Encanta" and "In Heaven (Lady In The Radiator Song)"
Oh Buddy, Come On! Future Islands live (2014)  - "slapping himself in the heart, growling like he's in Slipknot, dancing like he's doing the Olympic slalom..."
My Punk: The English Beat live (2014) - "propelled by an inextinguishable nervous energy, fuelled as much by insecurity and paranoia as goodtime partying..."
A Perfect Confection: Kylie Minogue live at The Old Blue Last (2014) - "As a weapon for getting a crowd onside, it's thermonuclear."
An Aura Of The Mythic: Prince live (2014) - "Prince has religion. I have Prince. And I reckon I win."
20 Years On: Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) revisited (2013) - "What you need to understand... is that the black man is GOD."
A Life Bizarre: Sheila E interviewed (2013) - "I think we've covered Prince enough. If that's OK with you..."
Boy George: This Is What I Do reviewed (2013) - "If George's voice is a ruin, then it's a beautiful one: his are the Tintern Abbey of tonsils."
A Parasitic But Necessary Art: Simon Price on the role of the critic (2013) - "A world with uncriticised art gets the art it deserves."
White Boys (Can Control It): Boy George interviewed (2013) - "I look back at myself and think, 'How the fuck did you cross the road?'"
Choice Of An Angel: Charlotte Church's favourite albums (2013) - "She's a size 12! How dare she have a McDonald's! Why isn't she at the gym? It's disgusting!"
Nina Hagen interviewed (2013) - "I am Kabarett. Life itself is a cabaret!"
David Bowie Is: The First Review (2013) - "Short of a fridge full of bottles of Bowie-piss labelled '1975', it's difficult to imagine how this exhibition could have been improved..."
Limitless Joy: Kylie Minogue interviewed (2012) - "Cards on the table, right up front: I believe Kylie Minogue is a pop genius..."
News report: V&A Launch 'David Bowie Is' exhibition (2012) - "There in Biro, in the Dame's disjointed, almost adolescent hand, are the words to 'Five Years'..."
Your Attention Please: Greg Dulli of The Afghan Whigs interviewed (2012) - "The band who put the 'sin' and the other 'sin' into 'Cincinatti'. And the 'natty'."
Madness frontman Suggs' 13 favourite albums of all time (2011) - "There's a feller here who says he's Prince Buster..."
Boys On Film: Duran Duran interviewed (2011) - "A certain breed of music journalist were never going to like us. But girls liked us..."
A Wild Nobility: Adam Ant interviewed (2010) - "I am bipolar. What does that mean? It means I'm up and down like a bride's nightie."
Gary Numan's Rebellious Jukebox (from Melody Maker 1994) - "Bowie spotted me, stopped everything, and made the guards come and throw me out."
Spellbound: Simon Price chooses songs from the 80s (2009) - "My 1980s was the 1980s of resistance..."
Manic Street Preachers: A Heavenly Body Of Work, interview Part 1 (2008) - "The Manics back then was like a military drill! All your kit had to be folded by your bed..."
Manic Street Preachers: A Heavenly Body Of Work, interview Part 2 (2008) - "Burning your bridges before you've even built them! That's fucking brilliant."
The Strange World Of Sparks (2008) - "The Maels exhibit an exquisite archness, playfulness, intellect and wit that beyond that of anyone else working in the medium."
The Rebirth Of Disco (2008) - "The spirit... was at the same time democratic and openly aspirational: the high life, on a Saturday night at least, is for everyone."
Muse - HAARP reviewed (2008) - "All the cons of pornography (where's the pleasure in watching other people having fun?) with none of the pros..."


Tricky - Angels With Dirty Faces reviewed (1998) - "This is P-funk where the 'P' stands for 'paranoid'..."


'That Coldness, That Precision': Trevor Horn interviewed (2012) - "People would say, 'It sounds like fuckin' machines'!' and I'd reply, 'That's exactly the point!'"


Suede - Sci-Fi Lullabies reviewed (1997) - "These songs epitomise that Sunday morning feeling: drizzle on the panes, and nothing on TV..."


The Low Spark Of Well-Heeled Boys (2010) - "The perception that poshos are colonising the charts isn't an illusion. It's demonstrable fact..."


Bluffer's guide to Steve Strange (2015) - "A young Steve Harrington scandalised the neighbourhood by becoming The Only Punk In The Village..."
Bluffer's guide to Joni Mitchell (2014) - "The simple sight of a bullzoder once made her cry. Perhaps it was on its way to pave Paradise and put up a parking lot..."
Bluffer's guide to Dad's Army (2014) - "Wilson is unflappable, Mainwaring very flappable indeed..."
Bluffer's guide to Prince (2014) - "He always pulls out before the line about masturbating in a hotel lobby..."
Bluffer's guide to Kate Bush (2014) - "She's the female Bowie. Or, if you prefer, the Dame who's actually a dame (at least in the American sense...)"


Yann Tiersen - Infinity reviewed (2014) - "Not quite out-of-this-world, but somewhere at the edge of it..."
Who is... Withered Hand? (2014) - "When I answer the phone, people think I'm not a man! That's a running joke..."
Who are... Temples? (2014) - "People who don't have the brain capacity for their own ideas rely on drugs, as far as I'm concerned..."
Sebastian Tellier - Confection reviewed (2013) - "Swooping over the Alps in a hang-glider, perhaps..."


Yelle interviewed (2014) - "We are all children of Daft Punk..."


Adam Ant Dirk Wears White Sox live review (2014) - "A psychotic and perverse leather boy with stiletto-sharp sideburns and a whip in his valise..."
Public Enemy hit the charts (2012) - "It has you excited about joining the fight, even before you've thought about what you're actually fighting for..."


Perspective: Why Music Journalism Matters - "Genuinely harsh reviews are an endangered species..."


Sugarcubes interview (1989) - "We are actually living in the sea, and the lobster on the land! There is no significance in that..."
Soundgarden interview (1989) - "We're one of the bands who stood up and had bottles thrown at us for playing slow in 1982..."


Kate Bush live review (2014) - "Zunächst wiegt Bush ihr Publikum in scheinbarer Normalität..."


Simon Says... (1984) - "Hi, I'm Simon Price and from now on I'll be writing a weekly column..."

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