Saturday, May 15, 2004

some good links://

Some kind links from some excellent blogs: many thanks to Parallax View and Silent Words Speak Loudest for noticing and referencing the blog.

Parallax View seems to have been written exclusively for me, oddly, containing as it does interesting stuff about the Fiery Furnaces, Maggie Gee, Helen Walsh and The Stills, all of whom have been recommended to a greater or lesser extent in recent months by Assistant Blog - as well as lots more music, arts and cinema related stuff. Silent Words Speak Loudest covers similar territory with painful thoughts on Newcastle's season breaking from midfield. Both blogs are great reads.


Matt the Hat said...

On that very point I have to say I am glad to have found this blog. It's clearly better than the average rubbish. It scored an astounding 60% on The Reviewer (highest yet by far). Nice one mate - keep up the interesting content.

Ben said...

Thanks for the link Jonathan - much appreciated.

Re: Morrissey. Unfortunately I missed his appearance with Jonathan Ross, but I know what you mean about him being less likeable than you might hope. Did you see the documentary on C4 a while back, around the time when The Smiths were everywhere because of it being the 20th anniversary of the release of 'Hand In Glove'? Though he made an excellent subject and interesting interviewee, always ready with a striking comment, he didn't actually come across as someone you'd like to meet. Admire, perhaps, but not actually like.

jonathan said...

Yes, I did see that. There was a very negative review of his new album in the Guardian last week, in which the reviewer made the point that 'it is difficult to think of another artist who currently enjoys such public goodwill'. I approached that television documentary in much the same spirit - and for a short period of time (say, the first twenty minutes) was quite enamoured with him, still. But before long the cracks appear and you realise that not only is Morrissey not a very likeable person, he probably never was in the first place.

Part of me admires him for his remarkable pig-headishness; I have difficulty standing by the things I did and said a couple of years ago, let alone the things I did a decade or two ago, and it is rather romantic to have never changed, never compromised. And then part of me thinks it is utter foolishness, and silly pride. The idea of being the same person I was when I was 18 is cringemaking. Morrissey is, I think, a victim of his own myth-making.

When we feel lonely, or unusual, or just plain bored, we make virtues out of our loneliness and difference, because we can't hate ourselves altogether. So we pretend that our inwardness or our obsessiveness (or in Morrissey's case, our inability to enjoy the world as others do) is a proud stance, a striking emblem of our individuality. We build ourselves upon this conceit and then we can't allow things to crumble. We're stuck with ourselves. That's how he appears to me now, as a man who is too proud to adjust.

Thing is, if he stopped behaving like Morrissey now, who would he be? That reminds me of the bit where Jonathan Ross asked "Can I call you Stephen?"

I've never heard such a definite, distaste-ridden 'No' as the "No" which Morrissey uttered in response :-)