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Mark Prindle’s Greatest Hits

The Smiths 1984 Debut

Between 1996 and 2011, Mark Prindle wrote thousands of album reviews for his website, www.markprindle.com. His reviews were often focused just as much on humour as they were on music, as his stream of consciousness style was over the top and entertaining. Even though his website design was distractedly basic, and his tastes only sometimes overlapped with mine, he was still a treasure, the internet era’s equivalent to Lester Bangs.

Read on for some on my favourite Mark Prindle moments – please note that his crass style may offend some readers.

His introduction to Wings:

It may seem a hopeless and Herculean task to follow up one of the most important and groundbreaking musical acts in history with a brand new band devoted plain and simply to ‘music.’ Not only do you risk alienating your entire fan base, but you open yourself up to the most brutal knee-jerk critique possible; quite simply, if your new group doesn’t stack up to one of the greatest bands in history, the media will gleefully declare you a FAILURE! But that’s a risk that Denny Laine was willing to take when he left the Moody Blues and started up Wings with a female photographer and the guy that did “Uncle Albert.”

His introduction to The Smiths:

The Smiths sprouted out of Manchester, England in the early ’80s with an agenda of red-hot hate, fury-stoked fascism and undying contempt for the remnants of the “Peace and Love Generation.” A violent reactionary right-wing Oi! band with obvious connections to the National Front, this four-piece of bile (screamer Steven Morrissey, thrasher John Marr, bass pummeller Andy Rourke and blastbeat supremo Mike “Himmler’s Hammer” Joyce) knew that its entire “final solution” agenda would be doomed from the start if they couldn’t find a more erudite way of couching such horrific (to the comfortable bourgeois masses) slogans as “I wear black on the outside because I hate all blacks on the inside” and “I am human and I need to be loved/That’s what all the Jews say.” The answer: target America’s teenage girl and closeted homosexual population. The rest is “Naz-istory”!

His opening line to his Joni Mitchell page

She shaved paradise and put up a landing strip
….
Okay! Now that all the Joni Mitchell fans have left the room, let’s get started.

His simultaneous reviews of Metallica and Lou Reed’s Lulu.

On his Lou Reed page:
Terrific. Exceptional. Delightful. Just eleven years after redeeming himself with the happy, sad and mad Ecstasy, the world’s most influential punk rock godfather rips the souls of Dionysia into buttonholes by recording an album with bloated boneheaded has-beens Metallica. Make no mistake: Lou brought to the project some of his most evocative poetry and experimental music ever. Unfortunately, the knuckle-dragging special ed students he hired to back him were unable to perform anything but the dullest and most obvious pounding racket imaginable.

On his Metallica page:
Wonderful. Great. Perfect. Just seconds after redeeming themselves with the ass-kicklin’ Death Magnetic, the world’s thrashiest balls-to-the-wall nutrockers shatter the dreams of long-hairs nationwide by recording an album with doddering 900-year-old imbecile Lou Reed from the Velveteen Underground. Make no mistake: James, Lars, the gay-looking one and the new guy hit the studio READY TO ROCK SOME ASS!!!! Unfortunately, the 39-pound wheezing retard gave them nothing but human shit and garbage to work with.

His review of The Jam’s All Mod Cons, translated into Chinese and then back to English:

This mark Scam.s enterprise, specially they steal the bass line are To are some person’s way artistic peak (Didn.t we have the Nice time from Taxman.?) The That.s truly creativity and I hope they very quick make it again. This belt sounds completely maturely in this, proposes song is quite different and fully collection which realizes. Without punk, less silence uncommunicatively sound early 60s wannabe- isms: Compared with is colorful, melody and arrangement. Mr. the Clean wire style is intense. upbeat happy Billy hunting. Prettily classically picks Fly. A bomb 2 strings garages stomp in Wardour street. — —- This is outstanding pop/rock album makings. It look like < b>Some Girls come besides the same year production are very clean and are full, you.d never guesses, but their can.t unfortunately delivers it from begending to the inn. Why all does Beatles imply? I already mentioned To are Taxman (Didn.t we have one Nice Taxman?) It.s too badly has one components completely rips from She loves you (??). The English sound likely meaning is the sequel i loves her to And Ross. And had the way too many these shift correlation small string is Beatles does behind way chorus thingies when the rock-and-roll heart still beat (in the Cleveland. Detroit! UHH! Rock-and-roll heart!) And is worst all, pesters their cover. The David watt sound likely completely is ripped, is not from Beatles, but from pesters! I mean, songwriting in that first song is so ray Davies? ~? ~? ~? ~? ~this is one is truly low 8, while convenient says one. One wrong measure, Paulo WELLER, with it.s SEVENSVILLE next time ROUND. I.m accusingly aims at you, Paulo Weller! And my finger.s a-wagglin. Back and forth! Waggledy-waggledy-doooooooooooooooooooooooooooocOoooooooooooo Oooooooooooooooooo!

(Note: If you think this review looks like I translated it into Chinese and then back into English, that’s because you’re a racist. I always write like this.)

(Especially “~? ~? ~? ~?” I’m constantly saying that in real life.)

On Radiohead’s The King of Limbs:

People who know big words claim that The King of Limbs was influenced by Krautrock, dubstep, congotronics and indie art-rock, but to me it just sounds influenced by the creative drive to make music that has not been made before. They may have succeeded in this goal (having heard only a tiny percentage of the world’s recorded music, I wouldn’t know), but honestly it’s not nearly as difficult to create a bed of rhythmic, repeating noises (no matter how sonically enjoyable) as it is to craft a melodic and emotional tune that tests the time of stand. Radiohead have proven in the past, particularly on Kid A, that they have the ability to do both at once. But The King of Limbs, like Amnesiac, has no emotional core; it’s just a collection of sounds arranged into patterns and placed in your ear by a bunch of foreigners.

If you live in England, please disregard those last five words.

On Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew

Jazz? My eye! This is exploratory rock music! Like Krautrock, but brassier! If only somebody would wise up and throw out Miles Davis and his confounded strumpet!

On Radiohead’s Amnesiac

[A] woman at the dog run has two dogs that she named (I’m gonna gag just writing this) “Music” and “Major.” And she just keeps calling them – “Music!” “Major!” So as we were leaving, my lovely wife said to me, “That’s so pathetic. You know she just did that so people would walk up to her and say, “Oh! Were you a music major?” To which I hilariously replied, “I know! I’m gonna buy two dogs and name them ’12 Inches’ and `When Flaccid’!” H ahhww! DH!!! AHHH! EH!!!!

Have you read and enjoyed Mark Prindle? Do you have some favourite Prindle moments?

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