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Bit Of A Blur – Alex James

I’m back. Another 24000 miles under the Captain’s belt, visiting the old country. Grabbed a couple of books for the cabin: this one which suits my grizzled old man countenance, plus Alex James’ biography.

Blur music: I put on several of their albums since I returned and.. truly great sounds. Gave the music scene a kick up the pants. I could have done without the Oasis battle, mind, but listening once again to Graham Coxon’s snaky guitar lines is reason enough to celebrate: Damon Albarn’s lyrics, the enthusiasm, even the Britishness.. all good. But the BritPop excess… dear oh dear.

I nearly finished the book. Nearly. I’d have thrown it across the room, but you don’t do that to books, do you? But if I’d had to read one more tale of matey high jinks with Damian and Tracey and Keith, I would have shredded it, no problem. The more famous he gets, the more uninteresting the tale. I genuinely liked the early history of the band and the insights into his childhood, but the story all goes to custard in a blizzard of cocaine, booze and boorish behavior. I know he admits he was living the rock and roll lifestyle the way he imagined it should be lived.. and that should be entertaining and the basis for a great memoir (Paul Trynka on Iggy, anyone?), but here, it’s just a repetitive barrage of pointless anecdotes.

He may be a reformed character now, who knows? The closing chapters probably would have told me he’s settled down, living in a house, a very big house, in the country, new baby and wife bringing perspective and clarity to his thoughts. But is Alex James now the kind of bloke that Alex James would want to live next door to?


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