Jan 18, 11
Read from December 29, 2010 to January 16, 2011
This is clearly an extremely awesome book. I learned so much and was pretty much in awe of the way Reynolds was able to sum up an extremely productive and complex time in music history. Written in readable and passionate prose, it could also be equally viewed as an encyclopedia on the topic. A helpful index in the back will prove a great resource if you want a quick reminder of how any given group fit into post-punk as a whole.
Another amazing thing is the (almost) complete lack of pretension, a feat given the subject matter (a fairly arty/intellectual music scene). Reynolds has a knack for fitting any given group in its proper place in this huge and musically diverse and intertwined time in music. In some ways, it's all a bit too neat, but I'm grateful that Reynolds has done the work of making it all reasonably organized for me, the reader.
To be sure, if you're not already a fan of post-punk music, you will have a hard time getting into this book, or even understanding half the shit that Reynolds is talking about. I found myself wishing the book came with a mix CD including some of the songs and groups by which the history of music was affected, at least according to the book. It also set into a motion a huge renewed interest in some of the groups talked about in this book, and for that I am grateful.
This review is horrible, but the book is highly recommended for open-minded music fans everywhere.