Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Over The Hill

The past couple of weeks have thrown up a similar image to this...

...on Radio One's Big Weekend.

And something similar to this...

...on Later With Jools.

Madonna is 49. Nick Cave is 50. They were at the peak of their creativity in the 1980s. Back in those days Madonna would cavort onstage in all kinds of get ups. She was known for her raunchy, high energy act. Nick Cave was known for his wild, junkie preacher show. Seeing him live was a little unnerving, as I imagine seeing Ian Curtis was to those luckier/more hip than myself.

Now they hide behind guitars. Guitars don't look right on them. Madonna was born to cavort, hands-free. Nick Cave was born to preach, hands-free. A guitar isn't performance-viagra to the middle aged pop star. It is a crutch for a failing body. A body broken and old and withered and worn.

Making pop music is for the young. And these young compatriots of Old Nick have made the album of the year so far. Well, according to the bloke in the Guardian Guide they have. And I, trend-following wanker, find it hard to disagree. Ladies and gentlemen, Cut Copy...


  1. 'A guitar isn't performance-viagra to the middle aged pop star. It is a crutch for a failing body. A body broken and old and withered and worn'.
    I'm going to memorise that and say it to Kev when I 'owe him one'.
    Thanks Geoff.

  2. It's a well known fact that as you get older you spend more time fretting about your neck.

    Cut Copy are good, bit like Utah Saints not-on drugs. They should team up with Paste.

  3. Kaz - But Kev's a folkie. Folkies are mature from birth. They don't have to prove something when they get older. You can still use the line though if he gets too big for his cowboy boots.

    Murph - I haven't touched a guitar neck for over 20 years. I never really turned it on anyway. Didn't Paste used to be a graffiti artist?

  4. Arabella4:14 PM

    These young men are a bit too plinky-plonky sounding for me. Afraid I'd rather have a blast of 'Dig Lazarus Dig!' from Mr Moustaches.

  5. That's why you're living in the home of rock 'n' roll boogie, Arabella, and we're in bangin' SE Ldn. I used to like Old Nick about the time of From Her To Eternity but don't really listen to him any more, preferring Neil Diamond.

    The moustache makes him look like a very tall Mexican undertaker.

  6. I shudder when I see Robert Plant these days. I saw him perform at Cropredy 10 or so years back and since then everything has either spread or sagged. It reminds me I'm not as young as I used to be if i remember these people before age and gravity took their toll.

  7. But did Robert play guitar with the Zep at their recent gig?

    He's a lesson to the young and thin. Nothing lasts forever.

  8. I gave Cut Copy a whirl today - mainly because I have the pathetic habit of believing everything I read in Observer Music Monthly, I need to find bands for my next series - and I think they aren't that good at all. They might be interesting and brilliant if you live in Melbourne but I reckon White Denim or Von Sudenfed are better. Yes they have a different sound to the general prog garage or Duffy-esque stuff doing the rounds at the moment but - I would rather listen to real 80's music than this re-hashed cut and pasted version of Central Line meets Moroder meets OMD!

  9. Yeah but what about the Stones, and Floyd were great at that do in the park, and so were the Who, or are you just talking about new material.
    My son occasionally introduces me to some young bands - most of it goes right over my head, but there was a band called the Strokes that I enjoyed. I thought the Libertines were good too.
    I've seen Robert Plant on TV with that folksy bird advertising their album - that sounds like a load of mediocre drivel to be avoided.
    I heard a band called Goldfrapp on the radio that I liked - first time I have been tempted to buy an album in years, apart from Lily Allen of course who I lurve, even though Betty hates her.

  10. Romo - Fair dinkum, cobber. I still think Cut Copy are fucking excellent and would grace your show! The Von Sudenfeld album is very good - easily the best thing MES has been on for 25 years. I've had a look on Youtube and I've brushed White Denim under the carpet. I'd rather listen to the MC5.

    Tom - As long as the front men or women are true to themselves. As long as Jagger doesn't start spending the whole gig noodling on guitar or Roger Waters starts bouncing off a trampoline like Nils Lofgren that's fine. Goldfrapp are excellent, though Lily Allen - I'm sure you only mention her to wind us up. Me and Betty are as one on that score!

  11. Actually - now you come to mention it - I think I would rather listen to MC5 too. Did you know they are performing with Primal Scream at the Massive Attack curated Meltdown this year? Interesting. We prob should have CUt Copy on the show but I am not sure how well it would work live...I haven't entirely ruled them out yet although I would rather get Kraftwerk!

  12. Christ, the MC5 live. Are any of them still actually alive?

    Kraftwerk would be a fantastic coup for the show. Although they haven't done a tv show since Tomorrow's World.

  13. Bang on about Madge. I was there as she appeared with guitar, looking like she was desperately clawing for some sort of credibility. And the only questions is why? I mean, she's Madonna! The biggest female popstar ever! Just be a popstar! Sing pop songs! I don't get a plumber in to rewire my house.