There have been some other great reviews coming in for Graeme Thomson’s Themes For Great Cities book.
Firstly, Classic Pop magazine gave a glowing review. And recently, both Uncut and Electronic Sound magazines have reviewed it. The Electronic Sound review is succinct yet wonderfully positive. The Uncut review gives the book an 8/10 and its opinion of Graeme Thomson as a writer is wholly positive, but the rest of the review is rather backhanded and quite dismissive and scathing of the band. Almost as if the reviewer wondered why Thomson had bothered to waste his talent and energy in telling the Simple Minds story? Well, that’s how the review read to me anyway.
See what you think…
I still think my own review is the best of the lot of them so far. And I don’t usually plug myself with this much bravado! You can read my review HERE – and don’t forget that I am running a competition to win one of two copies of the book. Check the review post for details! The comp closes on Sunday, January 23rd.
Graeme himself was pretty awed by my review, as you can see below… I admit to being quite stunned by his reaction to it. And very humbled. A few tears were shed.
Last night Spotify revealed my yearly listening stats to me. There was no real surprise to find Simple Minds at the top of the tree yet again! And that Boys From Brazil was my top track for seventh year running. All the SM tracks in my Top 5 played tracks of 2021 all came from Sons And Fascination and given it was the 40th anniversary of the album, that would be of no surprise to anyone.
My latter love for Jonathan Richman shows itself in him being at number five of my Top 5 played artists.
My top podcast showed how much I have been enjoying Frank Gallagher’s Soundman Confidential this year. I love the bit about that yes, it’s okay for you to consider the host a member of your family now. Lol. Never in a million hears did I ever think I’d be having little online exchanges with Frank! I felt that Jim always made him sound intimidating as fuck, but he’s brilliant and is always wonderful. And even comments on my FB posts sometimes…which I find amazing that he’s sitting there in Flagstaff, AZ, reading my complete pap! Just last week he responded to one of my posts about enrolling in the OU for my Higher Ed. English diploma and my endless self-doubt. His response was “drive til they take the keys away”. I responded by asking him to “spread some gallus my way”. He replied back, “you don’t need anyone’s permission to be yourself”. He’s lovely. Just lovely.
Of course there is much more music I listen to outside of Spotify so it isn’t 100% everything I listen to. I have been listening to SM live bootlegs and gigs much more this year and that won’t be reflected on Spotify stats, just as one example.
Here’s the breakdown of it in full visual splendour.
Lastly, today sees the release of Classic Pop magazine’s retro look back to all things 1982 in a dedicated special issue. In amongst the artists and bands discussed is a piece on the art side of music which features Malcolm Garrett. And of course the main feature to do with Simple Minds is a look through New Gold Dream. There’s a part of it that covers the official videos released. They mention the Promised You A Miracle and Glittering Prize videos. Someone Somewhere In Summertime was the third single from the album and therefore should have had a video released but one was never made. Instead the magazine talked about this one (below). I love what is said about Jim’s moves. Lol. You’ll not be surprised to learn that I adore this video and quite a bit of art from me has come from it. I will leave my favourite example of that at the end of the post.
Simple Minds are the main feature in this month’s Classic Pop magazine, talking tours, new material, recording time, as well as talking about the release of the Street Fighting Years box set.
Non-subscribers to the magazine will be able to purchase the cover seen above, but subscribers get a different exclusive cover. I will post image of that later.
There is also a review of SFY further within the magazine.
So far the reviews for Street Fighting Years haven’t been overly kind. And this isn’t much different. Not as harsh as the Mojo hiding that’s for sure. I now find myself getting strangely defensive of the album.
I was looking through the new Classic Pop special on the New Romantics movement and wondering if Simple Minds would even get a mention anywhere. Of course they wouldn’t describe themselves as New Romantics…but they were certainly on the fringes of the scene, if not directly involved in it. And certainly their music fitted in with the sound of the period.
In particular, I had hoped to see them be mentioned in the feature of the magazine called “40 Essential Tracks of The Scene”, because if nothing else their sound was right in the frame (as far as I am concerned) for the period. I started to get a bit disgruntled as I turned the pages. I mean, if Duran Duran’s Planet Earth is there, how the fuck could I Travel NOT be?
Finally…and right next to Iggy Pop’s Nightclubbing (at a lowly 39! Fucking hell. I wonder about some of these music mags sometimes…) – was this (see below). I am actually finding Changeling a curious choice given what else is in the Simple Minds canon at the time of the New Romantics movement. I mean…HELLO! I Travel, anyone? Celebrate? Love Song?
But having said that, great that they chose a bit more of a curveball and highlighted Real To Real Cacophony right on its anniversary. I’ll give them that.
The full piece on Andy Wright from the latest Classic Pop issue below. If at the main site, click on the post header to then view the pages by clicking on them and accessing zoom options on the bottom right of the page.
If at the post page already…just click on the thumbnails!
The results of the Classic Pop Readers Poll is in and printed in the latest edition of the magazine. And, well, in the eyes of all Simple Minds fans they are top of the tree…not just in 2018, but eternally.
In the “Group of the Year” category, Simple Minds came in at 3rd place. Nothing to be sneezed at, of course, but us fans know better! Congrats, guys!