Nathan's Reviews > Suede: Love and Poison: The Authorised Biography

Suede by David Barnett
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Nov 10, 2007

liked it
bookshelves: biography, pop-culture
Recommended for: Suede fans almost exclusively, but also fans of smart-arsed British music fans.
Read in December, 2003

Biographies of pop stars, lets be honest, are usually, at best, tabloid trash that rarely appeal to a wider audience than the subject's fans. In that sense, it's hard to imagine anyone who didn't at least obsess over a Suede song or two relating to Love and Poison. It's not just a biography of a band that 99.99999999% of the universe hasn't heard of, its a biography written by that band's largest living fan. As an assistant to their manager, he spent a great deal of time touring with them, getting to know the various members, and meeting the people the songs were about. This biography is as much a biography of David Barnett as it is a biography of Suede, and in that sense, it is actually interesting. His wit is truly biting, and he spares nobody, himself included, in his scathing commentary. The band themselves, however, come off as shallow, petulant, spoiled and reasonably boring. An accidental Spinal Tap, a silly parody of themselves. Barnett should be credited with not glorifying the authors of his favorite songs, and revealing just how ordinary and greedy and piggish they really are. He does a good job of revealing the bland normality behind the seedy image the band worked so hard to promote for themselves. Ultimately, the book is like a long goodbye letter from a select few of us who once loved this band. It's probably not accessible to anyone who didn't fall in love for the first time to "Wild Ones", those who cared one way or the other why Bernard left, and those who really, for whatever reason, want to read a book that probably would have been better if it had been a biography of its author. David Barnett probably could write a good book about how music can shape life, love and identity. It'd be funny as hell, too.


Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Suede.
Sign In »

No comments have been added yet.