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Editorial Judgement

Xfm’s Tim Cocker and his regular column by bites back at the critics

Published on May 30th 2007.


Editorial Judgement

It won’t be the centrepiece of their Curriculum Vitae any time soon, but certain musical critics can at least gloat in the knowledge they have the unique power to pickle my brain. On June 25 Editors’ second album An End Has A Start is unleashed. The ‘critical reviews’ continue to focus on the fact that Editors sound like Joy Division. I’m not disagreeing. They do. Fact. While we’re at it so too do Interpol. Jet sound like Oasis. Oasis sound like the Beatles. Kasabian have Stone Roses moments. You got any more? Any chance we can move on from that now? In my more random moments I wonder whether those same music critics, if shown a penis, would complain “it’s not original, it reminds me of a finger too much”.

It is as impossible to break new ground in music as it is to avoid Davina McCall’s waters breaking on TV every summer.

I suppose the general point it does raise is that popular music is now old enough that unless musicians branch out into electronic gadgetry (Thom Yorke of Radiohead or Matt Bellamy of Muse, for example) it is as impossible to break new ground in music as it is to avoid Davina McCall’s waters breaking on TV every summer.

I was massively impressed by Editors’ debut album The Back Room, a record I give a regular airing to even now. Interestingly, some tracks on that debut album were produced by Manchester and Elbow’s songwriter and front-man Guy Garvey, and Editors share Elbow’s ability to tear up your insides at will with driven emotion filled tracks.

At Warrington Parr Hall, showcasing tracks from their second album, I was pleased to hear Editors sounding as much like Joy Division as ever. They’ve resisted the temptation to stray from the formula that got them acclaim, a Mercury Music Prize nomination, and shifted several shed loads of records. The lead single from the album, the epic Smokers Outside The Hospital Doors will be followed by the title track as single. I’ll be celebrating the indelible mark Ian Curtis has left on music (note the recent success of Control at Cannes) by incorporating that record into my collection. That, and having headache tablets at the ready when reading the music pages.

The best tune to have landed on my desk this week is the Chemical Brothers comeback track 'Do It Again' and the next gig I’m looking forward to in town is the Manchester International Festival, with Gossip, on June 15.

You can hear Tim's show on 97.7 Xfm Manchester weekdays 4pm - 7pm

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