I might sound unpleasant, but I am pretty sure that before and during 90s it was the real time to be proud to be British. I can’t really explain, but it was time of great band, rock vs pop battles, MTV, Liverpool, London and Camden…before the massive use of phones and reality shows I reckon the Great B. was in a way a better place to live in.
Said this very much personal consideration, I was around twelve years young when I spent an entire afternoon watching the tape of a 10 minutes appearance, interview + ‘live’ performance. Non stop. Non crazy stop, not even for a loo break. Maybe kinda obsession? One step at the time.
At that time I was so uncool not to have a tape recorder, lolz my “alternative” (read: poor) family. During that week there was the most important television music festival, usual triumph of boredom with the only exception for international guests. Blur came, Blur conquered. And my friend recorded everything. The afternoon following the performance, we watched and watched it. Now, Blur have 4 musicians, easy; on stage there were just 2, in a clear state of boozy disorder. I could smell alcohol from the sofa, not kiddin’. They basically didn’t answer any of the silly question, but just kept dragging human-sized cartons of the other 2 members, who were officially ‘ill’. Interview was followed by the worst out-of-time lip-synch performance; where in the middle of it Damon didn’t even pretend to sing but started jumping and playing with Coxon’s carton. There was also a stranger playing instead of Alex. It was P.E.R.F.E.C.T…. a perfect defect. It was a bloody contemporary art performance.. I guess they arrived to the Italian Riviera and started drinking as they meant to die then turned it into art.
Damon Albarn was my first music love and I was in trance watching him tripping over invisible objects. I was totally smitten with him and not for any clever reason fascinated by his scene.
Damon Albarn, oh Damon Albarn. For the first time I was really in love with his hair, voice and, yes!, accent. Everybody who’s met me knows (and doesn’t understand completely) that I adore strong, bit posh, British accents.. it’s a seductive weapon for me. Indeed. And if you disagree, now you know the origin and who to blame, Sir Albarn.
Oh, I have to tell you the end of the story about that afternoon. My friend’s mum came back and found us mummified in the same position as she left us, and freaked out. She took the tape out in custody and obliged to leave. I really had to wee too.
The song, by the way, was “Charmless Man”, AKA nana nana na na naa nanaa.
( a different live version, because of copyright the only one I can watch and upload!!)