What an exasperating and often silly read this was!
I adored Bauhaus in the early 1980s and was rather fond of some of David J's solo output. Love andWhat an exasperating and often silly read this was!
I adored Bauhaus in the early 1980s and was rather fond of some of David J's solo output. Love and Rockets and the reunited versions of Bauhaus I could do without but, fortunately for me, there was very little about them in this book. Unfortunately for me and for most readers, there was very little about, well, much of anything in this book beyond some protracted nonsense about sigils and fetishes and oooohhhhhh!!!!!! other spooooooky scary dark stuff that should serve as a cautionary tale for those who might want to indulge in too many drugs and too little self-awareness. I found myself laughing out loud several times during the midsection and then stopped and reminded myself that it wasn't intended to be humorous — that the author took it very, very seriously. And that thought made me laugh even harder.
Through reading this memoir I learned little about Bauhaus beyond the (already pretty well-established) fact that the four band members squabbled and bickered but somehow managed to overcome their personal differences long enough to produce some wonderful, influential music and play some amazing gigs. I learned very little about the music industry other than the (already pretty well-established) fact that it is corrupt and awful and lends itself to excesses, some of which temptations are difficult to resist for young lads (and middle-aged men who claim they know better). I learned very little about David J's background and motivations and personality, other than how special and amazing and intuitive he is — well, that's what everyone who was quoted as having spoken to him says in the book, so it must be true.
A couple of the catty anecdotes were amusing but most came off as childishly obvious attempts not to set the record straight so much as to place the blame squarely on someone else's shoulders. Alternating between mocking Murphy as dramatic and ridiculous, then professing to be concerned (as opposed to demonstrating concern) for his mental health, came off as rather tacky. Making snarky comments about how immature and emotional Ash was and then attempting to dismiss such snottiness with a gallantly tossed "but you have to love him" is rather disingenuous, too.
Having said all that, however, my biggest gripe about this book has less to do with the author's ramblings and more to do with basic proofreading and editing (if there even were such things) of the manuscript. In addition to the expected number of stupid typos generally found in Kindle editions (How can a rabbit-fur vest "malt"? Oh, he meant "molt"!), the text was riddled with hideous mistakes in grammatical construction and blatant factual errors. Perhaps the author didn't realize he was misspelling the names of people he claimed to admire, such as Rowland (not Roland) Howard, Lux Interior (not Interia), Bettye (not Betty) Lavette, etc., but any fool of a proofreader with access to Wikipedia should know that Peter Cook played the devil in "Bedazzled" and not, as the author asserted, "Bewitched." Is there no such thing as fact-checking anymore? What a carelessly thrown-together piece of work this was — on so many levels!...more
It's an autobiography written by Morrissey. I knew what I was getting into when I cracked the cover open, but it was a gift and I felt obliged to carrIt's an autobiography written by Morrissey. I knew what I was getting into when I cracked the cover open, but it was a gift and I felt obliged to carry on, so I gave it the old school try. Silly me.
This was an agonizing read that took several months to finish because I didn't have the patience to tackle more than 10 to 15 pages at a time. What an insufferable slog this was! Self-indulgent, self-important, whining, arrogant, paranoid, petulant, truculent, hubristic, preening . . . such adjectives may frequently have been leveled at the author but remain inadequate to describe the tone of what basically amounts to 450 pages of really badly written self-aggrandizing prose. Cheap alliteration, relentless self-quoting, and multiple pop-culture allusions do not turn navel-gazing schoolboy ruminations into poetry or philosophy! I can deal with the difficult personality, the narrative disconnect of the random observations, and the extraordinary self-pitying belligerence, but I cannot accept that nobody along the way was willing to take the author's immature scribblings and EDIT the text. There are subject/verb disagreements, incorrect tenses and cases, dangling and misplaced modifiers, and dismal attempts at clever wordplay (giving the author the benefit of the doubt that they were intentional) which fail to be clever and instead read like, well, glaringly bad typos.
There is, however, one very nice and quotable (for reasons not of mockery or derision!) line toward the very end of the book: " . . . I know that life's biggest prize is to have the day before you as yours alone to do with as you wish." That said, I wish I had the time back that I spent reading this book, but I guess I take responsibility for my choice to keep plugging along, knowing I was getting nowhere other than more exasperated with every line.
Take responsibility? Ah, if only Morrissey would consider doing such a thing! Perhaps then his story would be more rewarding.
This book does not diminish my affection for the musical work of the author either as a member of the Smiths or as a solo artist, but any good will I may have had toward Morrissey the individual has left me. ...more