Everything Is Nice

Beating the nice nice nice thing to death (with fluffy pillows)

Top Marks For Not Trying

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For some reason Alexis Petridis really doesn’t like Brianstorm. From his four star review of Favourite Worst Nightmare by Arctic Monkeys:

Brianstorm sounds like an entry in what seems to be a competition among major artists to see just how devoid of a tune a single can be and still make the upper reaches of the chart, raising the stakes substantially over last year’s winner, SexyBack by Justin Timberlake… Brianstorm’s lyrics are cut from the same sarky cloth as their debut single, Fake Tales of San Francisco, but listening to it you’re haunted by the thought that hearing a multimillion-selling rock star sneering at an unwanted interloper in his dressing room might not be quite as edifying as hearing a whip-smart teenager chuckling at his peers in the indie disco.

Two and a half years later, Petridis is stil stewing on this in his four star review of Humbug:

What you do when you’re removed from the environment that inspired you is a question their last album, Favourite Worst Nightmare, struggled to answer. It unsuccessfully tried adapting its predecessor’s arch, sarcastic stance to fit the world that Arctic Monkeys now inhabit on the charmless opener, Brianstorm

It is not one of my favourite songs either, it is too blunt to be one of their best, but Petridis seems off in his criticism. As he suggests, they have simply transferred their contempt from the local to the global music industry so I’m not sure why taking pot shots at an international promoter is less edifying than doing the same to kids with dreams of making it (whatever that means). And if he thinks the venomous Fake Tales is just indulgent chuckling he must be tone deaf. He is right about Cornerstone though.

Written by Martin

11 September 2009 at 07:46

Posted in music

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One Response

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  1. As it happens, I quite like Sexyback too but as a bonus here is Charlie Brooker on the single:

    Who the Christing hell does Justin Timberlake think he is? I’ve only just heard his recent single (several weeks after every idiot in the world ran out and bought it, it seems), and according to the lyrics, he’s bringing sexy back.
    That’s what he says, bold as brass. “I’m bringing sexy back,” he moans, with a meerkat grin on his fizzog, like he’s in charge of the world’s sexy resources, the cheeky bastard.

    I mean Jesus Christ, Timberlake: sexy isn’t something you can withdraw from the market then subsequently revive, like Texan bars or Prime Suspect. No. It’s an amorphous concept which means different things to different people. There’s no regulatory body monitoring its supply, Opec-style – and even if there was, no one would put you in charge of it anyway, you snide, self-satisfied, stinkarsed, jigging little stoat.

    How dare he? Genuinely – HOW DARE HE? How DARE this dot-eyed, crop-haired, fun-sized, guff-tongued, pirouetting waif-boy scamper on to the world’s airwaves and loudly proclaim to be the sole global administrator of all things sexy?

    It continues in this vein.


    11 September 2009 at 07:50

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