Bad Vibes: Britpop & My Part In Its Downfall
by Luke Haines

The underground press remain faithful

Bad Vibes: Britpop &
My Part In Its

Just as Mark E Smith surprised everyone with his Renegade memoirs earlier this year, so Auteurs frontman and all-round misanthrope Luke Haines sets out to shock/ inspire with his version of what happened in Britain between 1990 and 1997.

What’s most shocking about the trajectory of his numerous incarnations is Haines’ seemingly unquenchable desire to destroy his own career and, later, staggeringly, his health. Anyone familiar with his cruelly underrated canon will not be surprised to read sentences such as, “It really is a great time to be dead,” after learning of the suicide of Kurt Cobain. Likewise, when referring to an album of Auteurs remixes as “fuckawful, seizure inducing amateurish meanderings”, he’s grateful that he retained the publishing rights as it goes on to “sell well in the States”. Alex James’ A Bit Of A Blur this is not…

That’s all the better, though, as this relentless nihilism stretches hilariously, snidely, and more often than not bitterly, across 256 pages. There’s Auteurs insight aplenty should you want it (and if you haven’t heard 1997’s After Murder Park yet, buy it, then you will) and a bloody good read besides if you don’t. Light reading it ain’t. Thrilling reading it most certainly is.

5 stars 5 stars 5 stars 5 stars 5 stars

William Heinemann | ISBN 0434018465, 256 pages

Reviewed by Jake Kennedy
<< Back to Issue 358