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MARK TAYLOR'S BIG CITY NIGHTS
KIRK BLOWS: HAMMERED
Kirk Blows is an ex-Metal Hammer editor and also started up the now defunct but pioneering Metal CD magazine. Blows was mainly in action back in those innocent days of 80s Metal when 'anything goes', when Metal fans would happily read a magazine that featured all of the Metal spectrum full of stories of bands as diverse as Metallica, Poison and Journey.
The world was full of thrashers, bikers, glamsters and wimpsters, but back then but the Metal community was all one big happy family... No one had heard of diversity.
The 80s were a more affluent time for the music business when journalists would be taken out for dinner and drinkies on some manager's tab and often flown to the other side of the world just to get the latest story. Etiquette was a word that most Metal journalists failed to know the meaning of and disgraceful drunken behaviour was the order of the day.
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Unlike Mick Wall, who infamously drank, snorted, injected, shagged along with the bands and got name checked in a Guns 'N Roses song, Kirk Blows is a man of lesser willpower who found himself drank under the table by most of our Metal heroes. In this book he re-tells many of his interview conquests. Some are compelling reading, whilst others are so short and sweet you're left wondering why they were included.
However, There's plenty of interesting material in this quickfire read of a book. There's an open letter from the now departed Wurzel who was dismayed by the thought of Lemmy moving to America and felt that Motorhead would lose it's Englishness, and wasn't too happy with the direction of the album 'March Or Die'.
This was a story that when originally printed almost physically moved Lemmy to tears and the wart faced warrior wanted to rip Blows apart for almost single handedly splitting Motorhead up. The interview with Lemmy is fascinating to read as Lemmy lets down his guard and opens up.
Brian May gives his first full length interview to Blows following the death of Freddie Mercury and it's an insightful read as he ponders the future of the band and his own mortality. There's the feud and fallout of Bruce Dickinson as he leaves Iron Maiden and the thoughts of Judas Priest after the aftermath of Halford quitting to go solo.
There's some hilarious quotes too: Carlos Santana - "Music is like a river... but sadly, sometimes it's polluted and people shit in it." Gene Simmons - "I can remember her smell, her taste, the feel of her skin, but ironically... I don't remember her name." Or the egotistical Yngwie Malmsteen on his travels behind the Iron Curtain. "The girls were great... I fucked some of them and they were so wet, y'know... And then it occurred to me... That all these women in Russia have spent their whole lives just waiting for Yngwie to hit town."
No book on the debauchery of Metal would be complete without the words of Ozzy, UFO, Alice Cooper, Metallica, Def Leppard et all and even Dumpy's Rusty Nuts and the Macc Lads get to spill the beer.
This is an easy read with no story veering off into boredom. A handy book to keep in the lavvy when you have the occasional ten minutes spare here and there to enjoyably dispose of the previous night's vindaloo.
You can see MetalTalk.net's Mark Taylor's many reviews and interviews right here. It's an impressive list...