- 22 May 01
Dermot Stokes' 1979 You couldn’t call it vintage could you? Although the overall standard was … uh … OK.
I wonder how many people have pondered on the fact that rock’n’roll is entertain its fourth decade. It’s a generation old amigos, and the question is did the year that has just dribbled to a close do the music justice?
You couldn’t call it vintage could you? Although the overall standard was … uh … OK. But how many of the top LPs would one go into the streets and get into trouble for?
I would for the Undertones, and for Parker’s ‘You Can’t Be Too Strong’, one of the decade’s greatest songs, for Rory Gallagher’s opening riff to ‘Follow Me’, for Scullion’s “I Am Stretched On Your Grave’. But there should be so many more.
At the same time there is something complete about the albums of the year – Dave Edmunds taking his rock’n’roll roots from the fifties to the ’80s to produce a tour-de-force, Talking Heads making modern music with muscle, mind, mayhem and rhythm, the ultimate (so far) new wave music, and proof positive of the leadership of New York … And Graham Parker gathering the potentials of his emergence in the late ’70s to produce a very very fine LP.
But above all there’s Ry Cooder, whose solo career spans the seventies, who has always been one of the keepers of the seals of musicality, of honesty, of integrity, of everything any musician could and should aspire to, a man who embodies the aims and objectives of the late ’60s and ’70s as only a few others can – (Lowell George, Captain Beefheart, John Fogerty …) who drew the decade to a close with the most openhearted, personal, uplifting, human, warmhearted and (yes) traditional rock LP of the year.
Just listen to ‘Trouble’, ‘Little Sister’, ‘It’s Gonna Work Out Fine’ or ‘I Can’t Win’ and you too will know. It’s a mighty feeling.
- Film & TV
- 16 May 22