Posts in category

Past Lives

We take a look at the lives, and sometimes deaths of some of music’s greatest figures.

Obituary: David Berman from Purple Mountains/Silver Jews dies.

Read More

“It matters not where I come from in relation to the world, as long as the world and I arrive at a common point at a common time”. So say the sleeve notes on Bill Withers’ debut album ‘Just As I Am’ (released on the dubious Sussex Records, the same that made a mint from …

It was only last month that Backseat Mafia reviewed the great new album from David Berman’s Purple Mountains project, saying it was: a beautiful album from beginning to end – a bleak vignette of some mid-western USA existence leavened by a twisted sense of humour, a sweet acceptance of the bitterness of a worn out …

And so the so-called classic trio is no more. The last remaining member of iconic heavy metal band Motörhead best known line up, ‘fast’ Eddie Clarke has died, aged 67. He was being treated in hospital for pneumonia and was confirmed by the band’s manager Todd Singerman. It follows the death of Ian ‘Lemmy’ Kilmister …

“We completely refuse to make a judgement about what is beautiful and what isn’t. We make something, that’s all, and the scope of possible sounds is immense. We’re not musicians, we’re universal dilettantes”. So said Holger Czukay in 1972, bassist and erstwhile leader of German avant-garde band Can. Though they famously stated that there was …

Tuxedomoon (originally consisting of Steven Brown and Blaine L. Reininger ), were part of the late 70’s San Francisco ‘Freak Scene’, which also included The Residents, Chrome and Flipper. Their underground sound, comprising of mainly synth, sax and tape-recorder, was boosted by the arrival of Peter “Dachert” Principle on bass in 1978. Their only credo was that …

Film-maker, George A. Romero, died on July 16th, 2017, after a losing a brief aggressive battle with lung cancer. His name is synonymous with the zombie movie, a genre he almost singlehandedly created. His 1968 film ‘Night of the Living Dead’ is rightly hailed as a groundbreaking classic in horror movie history. He made further …

Liverpool singer Pete Burns died of a heart attack on Sunday. He was 57. I first encountered Pete Burns around 1978. Me and my schoolmates would catch the bus to Liverpool every Saturday and blow our pocket money on 7” singles in Probe Records. Pete Burns served behind the counter; an explosion of black crimped …

As a music blogger, this is a post I never wanted to write. In fact, it’s a post I never thought I would write. Prince has always seemed ageless; immortal. I never considered there ever be a day we would lose this man, because I assumed he would outlive us all. I have never seen …

In some ways, it was almost seems inevitable. On one hand, one of the best and most successful singers, not only in his illustrious record company, Motowns history, but also in the whole of popular music history. He had been having hits since the 1960’s, his breakthrough chart hit being I heard it through the …

Its December 8th today, and exactly 32 years ago to the day Mark David Chapman shot John Lennon in the back  four times, on the steps of his apartment building, The Dakota in New York. Doctors said no-one could have lived for more than a few minutes with the scale of injuries Lennon sustained, and …