Echo & the bunnymen: Classic or Dud?

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Echo & the Bunnymen: classic or Dud?

Luís Sousa, Saturday, 24 March 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Guilty of a charge levelled at many other bands discussed here (notably Killing Joke), Echo & the Bunnymen are nothing if not completely and utterly pompous. That said, however, you cannot deny the scope and grandeur of some of their work. While it may seem overtly histrionic and pretentious to some, in my mind, the wind-swept "Killing Moon" absolves the band from any of the ego-related shenanigans they can be accused of. Simillarly, that live version of "Do it Clean" from the Royal Albert Hall (I believe..although I could be mistaken) is completely scintillating. Even their "reunion" album, EVERGREEN was credible (not sure about its follow-up, however). I'd tag them a classic. - Alex in NYC

Alex in NYC, Sunday, 25 March 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

classic, at least up until 'echo and the bunnymen'. 'crocodiles' is one of the best debuts ever and really i find few faults with the first four records with 'heaven up here' ranking slightly beneath the rest. no time for the reunion, and electrafixion was godawful.

keith, Sunday, 25 March 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Never rated them. Sort of grey and average. My indifference makes it dud, although there are no strong feelings of hatred or other nasty things to say. Just another 80s band.

Omar, Monday, 26 March 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Classic. First 4 albums are all compulsory on the early 80's curriculum.I have always liked the self-titled 5th album too. Heaven Up Here wins by a short head if I have to pick the best. Best track of all - 'Pictures on My Wall' .

It remains a miracle that they managed to do 'epic rock' whilst remaining fresh and without becoming boringly 'political', bloated or pompous. (U2 had failed on all counts by the time they released 'War'.). Sure Mac loves himself, but you can't completely dislike the guy, whereas Bono...

Although they're in no way essential any more , the re-union albums are both very good, but it's perhaps a little disappointing that EATB haven't been influenced by anything 'new' whilst they were away. It seems that Mac's small store of influences (Doors, Cohen, VU, Scott Walker, Iggy) has remained unchanged over the years.

Finally - just think back to some of the singles if you need confirmation : "Rescue", " A Promise" "The Cutter", "Back of Love", "Seven Seas", " The Killing Moon" !! It's a no-brainer - CLASSIC

Dr. C, Monday, 26 March 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

"Songs To Learn And Sing" is one of the classic best-ofs: a superb singles band when they could be arsed. A lot of the album tracks got a bit ponderous, though. The one which went "Zimbo zimbo zimbo" got me all sorts of shite when I tried to play it to my mates.

They've risen vastly in my estimation since reading Bill Drummond's secret theories about them in 45, though.

Tom, Monday, 26 March 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

DR.C I wonder if there is a single 80s guitar band you actually don't like? ;) ;) ;)

Omar, Monday, 26 March 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Oh Loads! The 80's was actually a terrible decade for guitar music. The late-70's was superior by far (Televison, Ramones, early Talking Heads, Clash, Joy Div, The Only Ones, Buzzcocks.....Pere Ubu, Pistols, Subways Sect...)80/81 was OK - Josef K, Au Pairs, Slits, more Joy Div, EATB. Then, apart from The Smiths you've got a long wait until the Pixies.

I hate with a passion : The Wedding Present, 99% of all C-86 - affiliated bands, Sister of Mercy, Mission, All other Goth, New Model Army, Carter the..., The Cult and many more.

Just to put things straight, Omar! ;)

Dr. C, Monday, 26 March 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Don't forget the almighty Killing Joke, Doc, you hate them too! Hahaha....=) - Alex in NYC (the unapologetic Killing Joke fan)

Alex in NYC, Monday, 26 March 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Price, Saturday, 14 December 2002 00:31 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Dancing Horses

A Nairn (moretap), Saturday, 14 December 2002 02:14 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Some fine singles but with Interpol's stronger rhytm section they may be rendered totally redundant if the new breed make enough albums. Plus when about did Ian's voice turn into William Reid's (or is it Jim Reid's)? That song about how he wanted to be there when you come was quite disturbing.

Anthony Miccio (Anthony Miccio), Saturday, 14 December 2002 19:44 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
I picked up a coupla these new CD reissues, namely "Ocean Rain", and "Crocodiles", neither of which I've heard for years. Damn, they're fucking great!! The mastering on them is really excellent, proper dynamics, nice transfers, etc, plus there are a load of extra trax, nice packeage etc. The sleevenotes aren't the best, but I suppose that's kind of minor.

Great, great music, though! Really, I was surprised by just how much of it I liked, and how many of the tunes I remembered. I'd forgotten just how nice the "feel" of the band is - crisp, tight, a little bit robotic, just how I like it, plus the guitar playing is excellent. they're a really underrated group of musicians. Most impressive is the way "Ocean Rain" manages to achieve this epic, big music thing, whilst retaining this crisp sound and feel, and w/o sounding flabby & turgid. IIRC there was some bumpf recently in mojo or uncut about the waterboys, and there was a side panel with all the "big music" also-rans (they said) I think "Ocean Rain" is what the should have been writing about, and the waterboys (who = sux0r) should have been in the also-rans side panel.

I'll be buying the rest of these reissues very soon. It occurs to me that Warner (going on the last lot of yes re's as well) are one of the few companies who are not fucking up their back catalogue by overcompressing it at the moment, so 3 cheers for them, or something.

Pashmina (Pashmina), Friday, 19 March 2004 21:12 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Yeah, I need to get the rest of the first four albums on reissue, I just have Heaven Up Here so far, and for very good reason in that it's fucking brilliant. But all four are.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Friday, 19 March 2004 21:20 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

At the moment, as well, I think "Killing Moon" might be my favourite ever single. Every damn one of Will Sergeant's guitar breaks on "Ocean Rain" is a little masterpiece!

Pashmina (Pashmina), Friday, 19 March 2004 21:34 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Was the boxed set material remastered? Should I buy the albums if I have the set?

paul c (paul c), Friday, 19 March 2004 21:37 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

These threads make me sad because Echo & the Bunnymen are the type of band that by all rights I should absolutely adore, yet for some reason I find it fiendishly difficult to connect with their songs outside of two or three exceptions (and "Killing Moon" isn't one of them).

Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:05 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Possibly the lyrics, Dan? Ian Mc's Lyrics are generally really bad.

Pashmina (Pashmina), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:11 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I would have ventured the voice (sez the Cure fan!), but "Moses" is one of my favorite 808 State songs, precisely because of Ian Mc. Also, "Lips Like Sugar" and "Bring On The Dancing Horses" are genius.

Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:13 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Classic. I've been enjoying the reissue of the eponymous album lately, I never liked it much the first time around. You can't go wrong with Crocodiles, Heaven Up Here or Ocean Rain either. Haven't tried Porcupine yet.

The Teardrop Explodes were, of course, superior in every way.

fortunate hazel (f. hazel), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:17 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I wouldn't call them "superior," just "different".

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:18 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

That's arguable.

fortunate hazel (f. hazel), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:22 (fourteen years ago) Permalink


El Diablo Robotico (Nicole), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:26 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

The Teardrop Explodes were, of course, superior in every way.

you know, yesterday I would have agreed w/this 100%. I mean the teardrops were great, cope solo as well, really, one of my favourite bands/artists ever, but to-day, right now, I've got to disagree. "Ocean Rain" beats anything the TDX recorded hands down. Really, it's knocked me flat. I remember "Silver", for example being not-that-good, but when I put it on yesterday, i was like FUCK, THIS = TEH BEST MUSIC EVER!!1 It fucking lifted me up.

Pashmina (Pashmina), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:27 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

er yes, it knocked me flat, then it lifted me up, right? As the leaden albatross of mixed metaphor flew past my head even, or something.

Pashmina (Pashmina), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:28 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Silver is classic. I like to cue it up so I can hit play first thing waking up.

fortunate hazel (f. hazel), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:29 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I love the Teardrop Explodes, but I just don't hear a great deal of similarity between them and the Bunnymen. I never saw why there had to be a feud between'em.

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:37 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Because the lead singers of both bands are very self-centered and extremely competitive. I think of it as an amiable kind of feud... old acquaintances making fun of each other can seem quite cruel to outsiders.

fortunate hazel (f. hazel), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:43 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

oddly enough, i have not yet gotten my hands on the re-issues. hopefully, i will remedy that situation in the near future.

i 2d everything norman said upthread about ocean rain. i would also add that it's the 1 eatb record where i can see the purported doors influence -- in that ocean rain is kinda what the soft parade should have sounded like.

Eisbär (llamasfur), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:48 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Was the boxed set material remastered? Should I buy the albums if I have the set?

Yes to both. (The reissues' bonus tracks are by and large not ones from the box set, though there's a small bit of overlap.)

Ned Raggett (Ned), Friday, 19 March 2004 22:59 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Because the lead singers of both bands are very self-centered and extremely competitive. I think of it as an amiable kind of feud... old acquaintances making fun of each other can seem quite cruel to outsiders.

I dunno `bout that. Cope isn't so "amiable" toward Mac through much of Head-On and Repossessed. Rivalry does that, i suppose.

That said, I just never though the two bands sounded very similar. I mean, the Bunnymen were much more of a guitar band than the Teardrops.

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Friday, 19 March 2004 23:53 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

they did co-write "read it in books." and they both love their sixties psychedelic/velvets stuff. though mr. mccullough hasn't seemed to have lost his marbles quite as spectacularly as mr. cope (whatever mccullough's other faults might be).

Eisbär (llamasfur), Friday, 19 March 2004 23:58 (fourteen years ago) Permalink


Thanks for the advice. I'll have to sell some stuff on ebay to pay for the reissues!

paul c (paul c), Saturday, 20 March 2004 22:03 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

**and the waterboys (who = sux0r)**

Utterly awful band, yr right. Back to EATB - I have just bought the grey 5th album in the reissue series. I like this one greatly, but I realise that no-one else in the world does. Original (non-LP)version of Bedbugs and Ballyhoo is the absolute bizness.

Norm - based on what you've said about Ocean Rain, I reckon you'd really like 'Flowers' the 2001 EATB album. It's not widescreen like OR, but Will's interested again and his guitar work is fantastic in the same way that it's great on Porcupine and Killing Moon. Little details chucked in that no-one else would think of.

Dr. C (Dr. C), Monday, 22 March 2004 11:26 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Reasons apart from having the complete albums for buying reissues if you've got the box set:

Shine So Hard EP on Crocodiles.
Live tracks from Australia on Heaven Up Here including The Disease - worra knees-up.
Nothing on Porcupine.
Life at Brian's (albeit minus newly topical miners' strike chit-chat) on Ocean Rain, and the non-12" AKA LP versions of Silver and The Killing Moon.
12" version of Bring on the Dancing Horses on the grey one. I quite like Soul Kitchen too.

Also they make the box set look much better than it did before.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Monday, 22 March 2004 16:28 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Live tracks from Australia on Heaven Up Here including The Disease - worra knees-up.

Very much so.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Monday, 22 March 2004 16:57 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

two years pass...
Oh my god people I have become obsessed with this song because Ocean Rain is a classic, an album among albums. I mean oh my fucking god. "THORN OF CROWNS" JUST OH MY FUCKING GOD:

Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Sunday, 28 January 2007 21:44 (eleven years ago) Permalink

I mean if that isn't the best music you've ever heard in your life then...

Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Sunday, 28 January 2007 21:45 (eleven years ago) Permalink

Thanks for that vid, Bimble.

Curt1s St3ph3ns, Sunday, 28 January 2007 21:52 (eleven years ago) Permalink

I mean you know, speaking as an anglophile, forget it. The Yanks can never do anything even half as good as that. Even though the sound of early REM is in my ears finally and making me very happy because I wanted to pull out the vinyl for awhile there so bad.

Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Sunday, 28 January 2007 21:57 (eleven years ago) Permalink




Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Monday, 29 January 2007 03:43 (eleven years ago) Permalink

When I'm on fire my body will be/forever yours/nocturnal me/
an ice kempt fire/and you and me/us realize/our bigger themes of..take me internally, forever yours, nocturnal me

Best o f british music, folks, this is it.

Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Monday, 29 January 2007 03:45 (eleven years ago) Permalink




Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Monday, 29 January 2007 03:47 (eleven years ago) Permalink

Froze to the bone in my igloo home

you know heaven and hell collide there are no in betweens

Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Monday, 29 January 2007 03:49 (eleven years ago) Permalink

Flames on your skin of snow turn cold...
Cold is the wind that blows through my headstones...

This is all because Echo & The Bunnymen are...the link at the end of my willly nillly

"I'm the Yo YO Man always up and down /so take me to the end of your tether"

Forget it. Echo & The Bunnymen forever

Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Monday, 29 January 2007 03:51 (eleven years ago) Permalink






cucumber cabBAGE CAULIFLOWER AAAAAAAAAAH@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

wait for me on a new horizon new horIzON FOR EVERYONE








Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Monday, 29 January 2007 03:56 (eleven years ago) Permalink


Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Monday, 29 January 2007 03:59 (eleven years ago) Permalink


Lick The Strobelight Lollipops (Bimble...), Monday, 29 January 2007 04:01 (eleven years ago) Permalink

shut up

slackety yax (H2-H4), Monday, 29 January 2007 04:01 (eleven years ago) Permalink

Oddly enough, I don't. But I soon will.

Millsner, Saturday, 7 February 2009 11:52 (nine years ago) Permalink

I can't help it, that Peel Session song "No Hands" is the gothiest thing ever. Beautiful and amen. Listen to the bass. I'll never recover. That is absolutely the most beautifully goth thing I've ever heard. Oh my god, make it stop. That is going to fuck with my head all night.
Too much goth. Too much.

think you're a fookin' bat, eh? (Bimble), Saturday, 7 February 2009 12:25 (nine years ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

Echo & Bunnymen Peel Sessions, people. This is where the living is. Breathe the fresh air.

All Night Party Of Goth (Bimble), Sunday, 22 February 2009 21:22 (nine years ago) Permalink

four months pass...

Do you know why I'm cooler than you? Because I have them doing New Order/Joy Division's "Ceremony", that's why. Out cooled you all, too late.

Buckets of Rong (Bimble), Sunday, 28 June 2009 21:20 (nine years ago) Permalink

I've got McCulloch joining NO for 'Ceremony' at the Festival of the Tenth Summer, 1986. That's got to count for something!

Millsner, Monday, 29 June 2009 10:46 (nine years ago) Permalink

Last time I saw Ian Mac, was at an 808 state gig where he was featured vocalist.

Mark G, Monday, 29 June 2009 13:05 (nine years ago) Permalink

haha that track ("Moses") is probably my favorite thing he's done

get money fuck witches (HI DERE), Monday, 29 June 2009 13:47 (nine years ago) Permalink

last time i saw IM he was singing Pale Blue Eyes with edwyn collins (and A N Other?) as one of a few support acts for the cocteau twins (which also include jim and william reid doing acoustic songs) (brixton academy, er, nov 1990)

koogs, Monday, 29 June 2009 18:32 (nine years ago) Permalink

Last time I saw him was Electrafixion. D'oh!

Keith, Monday, 29 June 2009 18:33 (nine years ago) Permalink

he was singing Pale Blue Eyes with edwyn collins (and A N Other?)

Roddy Frame, I believe.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 29 June 2009 18:37 (nine years ago) Permalink

you are right. who else played, do you know? google got me lots of links to that same cocteau's gigography but no details.

koogs, Monday, 29 June 2009 20:29 (nine years ago) Permalink

I like how you're asking Ned, Deano.... I mean, you were there. I suppose if you remembered maybe you weren't.

Keith, Monday, 29 June 2009 23:16 (nine years ago) Permalink

two months pass...

Anyone have the "Baseball Bill" 7" that was Electrafixion's last release? It was later included on Echo's "Avalanche" but to my ears the two versions are labeled backwards:
"Baseball Bill (Electrafixion version)" - 4:44
"Baseball Bill (Sgt Fuzz remix)" - 4:35

The first track sounds fuzzy, the second less so. Can anyone check?

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Tuesday, 8 September 2009 15:12 (nine years ago) Permalink

one month passes...

Moment from Simon Reynold's "Rip It Up..." book that made me laugh:

Ian McCulloch started to make bitchy comments about U2, describing their anthemic songs as "music for plumbers and bricklayers" while boasting that the Bunnymen were "an oceans and mountains band."

Cunga, Friday, 16 October 2009 04:46 (nine years ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

lol @ these guys blaming the IRS for them fucking up their tour

I'm gonna put on an iron burt, and chase stanton out of urt (Curt1s Stephens), Monday, 9 November 2009 15:53 (nine years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Just been speaking to my brother in law who went to see them last night in Glasgow. Sounds interesting, as Mac was totally hammered, was abusing the road crew, ranting at the audience and walked off before the end. Though my brother in law had left before then.

The multi-talented F.R. David (Billy Dods), Thursday, 29 September 2011 19:35 (seven years ago) Permalink

Skip to 2'30 for Mac meltdown.

The multi-talented F.R. David (Billy Dods), Thursday, 29 September 2011 19:36 (seven years ago) Permalink

absolutely no idea what he's saying. made out 'shut up' and 'fucking bastard'.

brotherlovesdub, Thursday, 29 September 2011 19:57 (seven years ago) Permalink

meisenfek, Thursday, 29 September 2011 22:37 (seven years ago) Permalink

seven months pass...

So yesterday friend Stripey and I got to chat for a while with Will Sergeant about his art at his gallery showing in LA. Very cool guy. Artwork's excellent as well, BTW; showing only started on Friday and half the pieces were sold!

Also he has a new solo album out, Things Inside, which is acoustic and not limited to guitar either -- enjoyable and will have to give it a couple more listens here for sure. Les Pattinson also plays bass on four tracks!

Ned Raggett, Sunday, 20 May 2012 13:20 (six years ago) Permalink

i once briefly lived in a car (a friends) and killed their battery listening to 'the cutter' over and over and over for about three or four days.
obsessed with that song.
can do no wrong. (just got lent that julian cope 'double' book about that whole thing... which one should i read first?)

dextor ellis bextor, Sunday, 20 May 2012 13:44 (six years ago) Permalink

I really like Echo & the Bunnymen, but I've never gotten Sergeant's guitar hero status. It's amazing, in fact, how little the guitar plays a role in much of their best stuff, aside from a few little simple but not terribly inspired licks (compare to Pete, who is one of my favorite, and a wildly creative, drummer). Though I admit, knowing what not to play, or when not to play, is often gift enough.

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 20 May 2012 13:46 (six years ago) Permalink

one month passes...

Meantime, other Will-related stuff. First, a new project, Polter-Geist, with Les Pattinson.

Separately and a couple of years old, the Metronome.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 9 July 2012 18:52 (six years ago) Permalink

Are they any cop? It's been years since anything from a Bunnyman interested me, sadly.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Tuesday, 10 July 2012 04:27 (six years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

The new Bunnymen album is...another pleasantly forgettable listen.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 15 May 2014 14:29 (four years ago) Permalink

I see they're touring again too. Have not seen 'em live in ages.

curmudgeon, Thursday, 15 May 2014 17:46 (four years ago) Permalink

That's some excellent music writing in that review, really sums up how I've felt since "Evergreen". Also liked the bit about it being as long since Evergreen as Evergreen was from Crocodiles.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Thursday, 15 May 2014 19:02 (four years ago) Permalink

That was one of those moments I had to double check to be sure -- and when I realized I was right, it made everything clearer.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 15 May 2014 19:08 (four years ago) Permalink

...and the Bunnymen's UK tour has been cancelled. This according to Black Submarine's twitter feed (it's Nick McCabe and Simon Jones' new band - they were opening all dates for the tour)

Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 15 May 2014 19:11 (four years ago) Permalink

Eh....tbh their whole comeback hasnt really been up to it.

Wished them all the goodwill esp after De Freitas but they just seem to be THERE now....its hard to imagine Mac the mouth in his pomp being satisfied with this

Master of Treacle, Thursday, 15 May 2014 19:21 (four years ago) Permalink

evergreen = last album i picked up by this band.

saw them in 2005 at glastonbury .. and they were just going through the emotions to say the least.

now thats its 2014, has mac the mouth found somewhere to live ?

last time the promo machine kicked in, he was supposedly living in the studio as he had moved out of the marital home due to a full on midlife crisis kicking in (same era as the live gig meltdown as above) ..

mark e, Thursday, 15 May 2014 19:26 (four years ago) Permalink

The press release kinda half alluded to stuff like that.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 15 May 2014 19:30 (four years ago) Permalink

Yeah, here we go:

Read into it all what you will, especially these bits:

A year ago, Ian McCulloch found himself in a dark place. After leading Echo & The Bunnymen through 35 years of epic highs and turbulent lows, the singer realised it was time to take a break and look inwards. Although the group’s last album, 2009’s ‘The Fountain’, had been enthusiastically received, McCulloch’s songwriting partnership with Bunnymen guitarist Will Sergeant had virtually ground to a halt. What’s more, years of rock excess and running away from personal problems had left him feeling adrift and unsettled. “I wasn’t happy with a lot of stuff,” admits the singer. “Emotionally I was at a very low ebb.”

Yet from this slough of despond, ‘Meteorites’ unexpectedly began to take shape. Holed up in his Liverpool flat, mired in self-reflection, McCulloch started writing music on a bass guitar that was lying around, a process that instantly proved cathartic and fruitful. “Straight away I felt better for it,” he explains. “I had been thinking of taking five years off on an island, or whatever, but suddenly all these songs came from nowhere. It was really exciting and fresh. This record’s about my personal journey, my rebirth, even if it is a Bunnymen record.”

...Deeply personal and subtly revelatory, it sees McCulloch finally facing up to his demons with an honesty that his previous records, however emotionally raw, have invariably shied away from. The singer was encouraged to confront his feelings by legendary producer Youth, who had worked on McCulloch’s 2012 live solo recording, ‘Holy Ghosts’, and who was drafted in to work on the nascent ‘Meteorites’ at his Attic studio in London.

“Youth said, ‘Your lyrics are brilliant, but you’ve got something to get out’ - about where I was at that time,” explains McCulloch. “So I followed his advice. I wrote from the soul, more so than the heart and the brain. It scares the hell out of me, and surprises me, how much I’ve been able to reveal without putting a veil over it. There were signs all through my life of what was down there inside me - [‘Crocodiles’ album track] ‘Rescue’ touched on it as an 18 or 19 year old. But maybe it was seeing the future more than what was happening at the time.”

Among McCulloch’s startling self-realisations was that his upbringing in Liverpool may have profoundly scarred him in ways he hadn’t comprehended – a subject he addresses on album closer ‘New Horizons’. “I realised the first word of the song was going to be ‘if’– ‘If I got distant, from all the gifts that heaven sent…’ It was me finally seeing what people close to me could see for so many years, like my wife, friends. I remember, Lorraine saying, ‘You think it hasn’t affected you, the way your dad was?’ – he was a compulsive gambler, everyone loved him, but they also thought he was fraught with deep problems. But I was like, ‘No, he wasn’t fucked up, he was my dad.’ Lorraine said, ‘You don’t see how much you are your dad.’ So instead of me going, ‘Fuck yeah, I’m a twat’, I wanted to write about it, and see where it gets me and takes me.”

...Will Sergeant – the only other surviving Bunnyman from the original line-up that came together on the Liverpool post-punk scene in 1978 – was absent from the initial recording sessions of ‘Meteorites’, but a playback of several tracks at Youth’s house in London persuaded him to contribute guitar. Sergeant’s parts were recorded at his home near Liverpool as the deadline to finish the album rapidly approached. The results, reminiscent of his best and most inventive work with the group, underscored the feeling that ‘Meteorites’ wasn’t a McCulloch solo album, but a bona fide and worthy addition to the Bunnymen’s canon.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 15 May 2014 19:32 (four years ago) Permalink

ahh .. indeed this does read like a post midlife crisis awakening ..

mark e, Thursday, 15 May 2014 19:40 (four years ago) Permalink

two years pass...

saw them in SF last night for the first time ever and they were incredible. I gather Ian is poorly behaved at times, but we got none of that and his voice was great. Local SF man Kelley Stoltz (who is a massive, massive Echo fan and about 10/12 years ago did a Crocadiles show which is legendary to, well, some people) was invited to be in the band for this tour handling all the rhythm guitar duties so it was extra special for the SF audience, a good portion of whom are friends of his. All in all an incredible night.

akm, Thursday, 29 September 2016 04:08 (two years ago) Permalink

also they played nothing newer than "nothing lasts forever". I could have done with some songs from Siberia which I think is a great album, but not really missing anything else

akm, Thursday, 29 September 2016 04:10 (two years ago) Permalink

Sounds like they're keeping the correct focus, then.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 29 September 2016 04:26 (two years ago) Permalink

six months pass...

i decided this is the year i finally get into Echo & the Bunnymen. they are a band i have always liked and now i am listening to their albums in full for the first time. "Porcupine" is so great. i wish i had that voice, his vibrato is so glorious. this is some great stuff!

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 26 April 2017 15:56 (one year ago) Permalink

The break and build up to Shankar's violin in Heads Will Roll is the best damn thing.

MaresNest, Wednesday, 26 April 2017 16:25 (one year ago) Permalink

this video rules

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 26 April 2017 16:26 (one year ago) Permalink

porcupine's my favorite, one of the all-time guitar LPs for me and an apex of that post-punk snake charmer vibe that so many bands of the decade visited but seldom like THIS.

when i was 15 and would buy things i saw written on other people's leather jackets, and was also a sucker for weird band names, I bought a cassette of Porcupine with my paper route money at Har Mar Mall and put it in my walkman -- i have the most vivid memory of walking through the arcade there as The Cutter came into my head, what a holy shit moment.

gimmesomehawnz (Jon not Jon), Wednesday, 26 April 2017 16:29 (one year ago) Permalink

Classic classic classic classic - Echo & the Bunnymen are my all-time favourite band and I love everything they did. I'm always thinking that while I claim Ocean Rain is the greatest album of all time, the real answer might secretly be Porcupine.
The first four albums are the undenyable perfect classics, but IMO all other albums have plenty of amazing stuff on them too.

I have met Ian McCulloch several times and he's always been super nice to me. My greatest experience was when he toured his solo album Slideling and I caught him after the show. I told him how much I loved 'Kansas' from that album and he realized it was one of the few he hadn't played - so he sang the first verse and the chorus to me, on the spot.

Valentijn, Wednesday, 26 April 2017 17:43 (one year ago) Permalink

two months pass...

Seeing them tomorrow night with the Violent Femmes which is a very weird bill to me but I like both so hey. I can't wait.

Benson and the Jets (ENBB), Friday, 14 July 2017 17:22 (one year ago) Permalink

Ooh jealous!

I super regret not going to the Ocean Rain at Radio City Music Hall show a decade or so ago

or at night (Jon not Jon), Friday, 14 July 2017 17:24 (one year ago) Permalink

xp - my friend Ava is opening that show! Wish I was on the East Coast to see the whole thing.

sarahell, Friday, 14 July 2017 18:56 (one year ago) Permalink

Oh, that's cool! Will certainly let you know how it is. My best friend from college (who now lives in LA) is going to be in town and coming with me and earlier today I realized that while I've seen her lots since we were at NYU, this will be the fist show we've seen together in 18 years which is crazy and now I feel very old.

Benson and the Jets (ENBB), Friday, 14 July 2017 19:29 (one year ago) Permalink

five months pass...

loved the use of jimmy brown in i don't feel at home in the world, what a track

kolakube (Ross), Wednesday, 10 January 2018 04:50 (ten months ago) Permalink

Two different trails on uk TV have used bunnymen tracks in the past month. It's like it's a thing now.

(Second season of French drama on bbc4 used a nouvelle vague version of all my colours, and that thing about the history of a Liverpudlian house is using killing moon)

koogs, Wednesday, 10 January 2018 06:29 (ten months ago) Permalink

I agree with Not Jon upthread, Porcupine for the sound, esp. Heads Will Roll, but Ocean Rain for the songs

Dr X O'Skeleton, Friday, 12 January 2018 12:11 (ten months ago) Permalink

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