Thursday, 17 November 2011

life of live - Julian Cope

I'd been a massive fan of Julian Cope's early solo work and had stuck with him through his series of sprawling double lps in which great single lps were hiding. However by the late 90s he seemed to have forgotten what he was really good at ... writing great pop songs and a bewildering set of release after release seemed to up the experimentation but lose out on the tunes.

The tour was billed as an audience with Julian Cope and promised the man on his own telling stories and singing songs from his complete back catalogue. Having read his autobiography Head On which is still one of the best musician autobiographies I've read, it was too good an opportunity to miss.

He was on fine form , playing the english eccentric to the hilt, the songs worked well and his voice filled the concert hall. He was as ever funny , charming and a little bit mad and bounced off the audience like the seasoned pro he was.

The only slight downer was that it hit home that to me the later stuff didn't really stand up to the golden teardrops and first 3 solo lps period.

Subconsciously this must have had some form of impact as I've not bought anything or really even tried to seek anything out that he has released since (about 20 lps in various guises). Helped by the fact that when I heard about his side group Brain Donor and the heavy rock sound, I knew we had parted for good!

If I've missed out on anything then please let me know - 20 Mothers was the last thing I got to listen to
I've posted one of the songs he played that night from the 2nd of his doubles , Jehovahkill. It showed he could still write a killer chorus

Fear Loves This Place - Julian Cope


  1. I saw the Teardrops a couple of times at their best (late 70s), I think at The Limit Club in Sheffield. He was a bundle of wires back then ans still is by the sound of it. Jehovahkill did have some great tracks; would probably have made a great single album.
    I saw Julian at a petrol station in Norfolk a few years back. He's frigging huge (tall) and possesses the smelliest of sheep skin jackets. I was wearing similar attire and tried a weak joke around the lyrics of 'Reward', pogoing and hollering "we're all wrapped up the same". I received a withering stare and breathed deep the exhaust fumes of his departing Volvo estate... ho hum...

  2. That is up there with when I met Iain Banks and slightly the worse for wear gushed that I loved whisky and scottish bands too
    sanity prevailed and i scuttled away just before proposing marraige


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