Head On/Repossessed
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Head On/Repossessed

4.4 of 5 stars 4.40  ·  rating details  ·  420 ratings  ·  33 reviews
Cope (of Teardrop Explodes) gives a wild account of the 1980s punk scene in these two works, now available in the US and in a single volume.
Published May 1st 2005 by Thorsons (first published 1999)
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Fiction about rock and roll is almost always ridiculous. Non-fiction about rock and roll is almost always also ridiculous, particularly in the form of the memoir.

However, Julian Cope is slightly different, perhaps because his life story is so ridiculous that it's kind of hard to believe, whether in the fictional or non-fictional format, and yet it turns out that he speaks the truth, in a very strange and compelling way.

These two books, bundled together comprise the two-volumes of his rock and r...more
Susannah Marriott
Possibly the best music memoir ever? In order of reading, I loved him, got bored by him, laughed at him, threw him against the wall, detested him, felt sorry for him, grew to love him again, became completely infatuated, and finally adored him so much that I had to read everything else he'd written.
A fascinating combination of two books (which rather confused my children, who thought I was reading a book upside down and backwards! Then were extremely disappointed to find out that I hadn't developed a new skill!) which cover two very different periods of Mr Cope's life.

I can't call myself a huge fan of The Teardrop Explodes or even St Julian, prior to reading these books, I picked them up on recommendation alone.

I wasn't disappointed, as he dissects the rise and fall of The Teardrop Explode...more
Ho letto solo Head-On, bello, pieno di aneddoti dettagliatissimi che mi fa pensare che o Cope si scrivesse tutto nei minimi particolari mentre le cose accadevano, o, visto che si è fatto più acidi di quanti si possano immaginare, si sia inventato tutto ma allora lo ha fatto in maniera brillante.
Per chi ama il punk ed il suo mondo.
José Vicente
Tremendo Documento del Señor Cope....Teardrop explodes vs Echo and the bunnymen....Julian Cope vs Ian Mcculloch....Escena de Londres / USA vs Escena Liverpool...Punk vs (plus) psicodelia....Drogas plus Musica....Vamos... impresionante testimonio de lo que era la escena alternativa post-sex pistols de principio de los 80...
Todd Osborn
I loved Head-On and Repossessed, but then I'm a huge Cope-head. In other words, I'm biased toward liking it. I find Cope's stories of his early musical life interesting, engaging, often hilarious, and sometimes outrageous. In particular, the antics of his drugged-out company of cohorts (including him) made me wonder how he made it through that time alive.

Cope's books are well written, and easy to follow. He doesn't load up his writing with tons of technical musical jargon or long descriptions o...more
Mik Sabiers
A really good insight into how Copey became famous, the wonders of travelling on the road and the break up and rebirth of his musical career. Head on as a story of how someone made a name for themselves is great, Repossessed less so, but if you were getting into music in the late 1970s/early 1980s then this shiould bring back memories and also provide some home truths about people on the scene...
Brilliant. Refreshingly honest and fascinating account of Cope's musical and personal life. For all those kids dreaming of rock stardom, there's some things you need to know...in this book.
The Teardrop Explodes are one of my favourite ever groups, and "Head-On" is a perfect evocation of the band and the time. Julian writes in a friendly and hilarious manner, making this easy to read. He's a natural communicator.

"Repossessed" is heavy going in parts and not as enjoyable as "Head-On", but you will still want to read it if you enjoyed "Head-On"

Separately, "Head-On" would rate 5 stars and "Repossessed" would rate 3.
Doug Pfeffer
Apparently Rick Webb and I had a discussion about this book and he was very insistent that I read this. So insistent he bought a bunch of copies and gave me one. So I read it (Head On, not the other book in this volume).

I didn't know anything about the early early English punk scene. Now I know a bit! If covered that and the dude's BIG ROCKSTAR life of being The Teardrop Explodes frontman. Lots of partying and being a prick.
Fun book. Julian Cope gives his account of an indie band's rise to fame. It's not at all glamorous or particularly inspirational. The Teardrop Explodes were dirty and drugged and often without too many ideas other than to look hip. But Cope has a good story to tell. More important, he has a lot of fire in his belly and it comes out in the writing. Uh, Awlright!
Julian is a surprisingly good writer. He has a remarkable memory for detail, especially considering all of the acid he was taking at the time!

Head On is fantastic, Repossessed lacks the same manic energy. I hope he gets around to publishing an account of the next 5+ years, in which Julian did his best work.
so great that the funniest, most personal telling of the rock'n'roll life, full of side splitting drug stories, tour tales, hilarity and anguish, should come from the singer of a pretentious 80s british pop band, now turned astro-hippy druidic historian and incredibly bad dresser. oh julian i love you.
such a fantastic read ... Julian Cope tells the story w/ such ease + energy ... i think i read this over the course of 2 or 3 days all the way through + just wanted to keep going ... i highly recommend it
DJ Yossarian
"Head On" gets 5 stars -- late 70s music scene in Liverpool blah blah blah it's great. "Repossessed" gets 3 or 3-1/2 sstars as it starts to get a bit repetitive and JC is best taken in smaller doses.
I'm not a big fan of his, but this book is excellent for anyone interested in the early '80's post punk scene, or the music business in general.See it all through Copes acid tinged eccentricity.
Astute and honest appraisal of his rocky relationship with the music industry from a man whose individualism and integrity have not been compromised. Wit, Intelligence and attitude prevail.
Michael D
The best book by a rock n roller ever. The last few chapters of 'repossessed' are as creatively inspiring as anything i have ever read. WELL AWLRIGHT!
One of the best documentaries of rock'n'roll excess and the craziness of non-stop touring. Cope is a very human figure and takes you with him.
Only on page 20, but so far a great read. Anyone who lived through the punk scene of the 70's and 80's will love this book.
Head-On is possibly the best book going about rock'n'roll madness, drugs and general adolescent nonsense. Great fun.
Jules Fry
recommended - fascinating insight into the time, the man the genius...
Lol. One of the funniest rock autobiographies I've ever read.
Ian Fiddes
8/10. Julian does write an entertaining book. Enjoyed this a lot.
Jul 16, 2010 Leah marked it as to-read
just ordered this from Play - I'm looking forward to reading it!
repossessed was amazing. a very talented writer.
You like '80's post punk? Read this riveting bio.
Andy Theyers
I love everything about Julian Cope.
St Julian's mad rambling life. Great...
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Julian Cope (born Julian David Cope, on 21 October 1957) is a British rock musician, author, antiquary, musicologist, poet and cultural commentator. Originally coming to prominence in 1978 as the singer and songwriter in Liverpool post-punk band The Teardrop Explodes, he has followed a solo career since 1983 and initiated musical side projects such as Queen Elizabeth, Brain Donor and Black Sheep....more
More about Julian Cope...
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