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Verse, Chorus, Monster!: Graham Coxon

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When ‘She’s so high’ was released, it was as though they were issuing the permission to join their cool gang to stare at the floor, and gently reflect on life whilst noticing the beauty of the world… and then as I grew, they evolved and boy did they look up from the shoe gaze, and fully embrace/part dictate 90s culture… but the quiet guitar player was still the shoe gaze, introspective talent on the side, that didn’t seem to be as naturally lairy through the changes - how unfair was the Frankie Boyle description that left this influencer at the end of the comedy descriptive list as an unknown quantity? I also came to understand how difficult it would have been for a sensitive creative child to grow up in a macho army environment and how that would have contributed to the crippling anxiety he struggles with still. An interesting read, although at times veering strongly into areas of Graham’s fixations, which are not as entertaining for the reader. If he would be honest with himself and the reader, the book would come out something like 'Diary of an Oxygen Thief'.

Damon (Albarn) är nog den mest 'utvecklade' personen i Coxon beskrivning, troligtvis pga att de har känt varandra så pass länge. Take Coxon’s solo works as an example, his brief explanations and the influences of the time, from folk music to Sylvia Plath and his back-and-forth with alcoholism, are pasted throughout.

I really loved how the book began with Coxon explaining musicality as not inherently about what is perceived as genius, but much more to do with obsession. Some tend to find those who struggle with fame as ungrateful and entitled, but Coxon manages to compassionately display the difficulties of fame in the 90s and how a passion turns into a business. The Waeve, composed of band members Coxon and Rose Elinor Dougall, made their live debut in May 2022, along with the release of a new track titled 'Something Pretty'. Början består mest av minnen, och jag tyckte det var den bästa delen av boken- jag fick verkligen förstå han. He puts himself under the same high bar here and brings about an honest and inoffensive, humbling presentation of his own works.

An incredibly intuitive and talented musician, Coxon spends most of the book writing as if he's anything but, afflicted with crushing doubts about his own abilities both as a musician and a Human Being. Dock skulle det vara lite bättre om han beskrev hur hans problem påverkade hans relationer/hans omgivning). The book indicates that love in the 90s is paranoid, but friendship in the 90s was closed off from emotional expressiveness, to Coxon’s detriment. Probably the only really unexpected information in the whole text is that during the recording of The Spinning Top he started drinking again and supposedly finally quit in 2017. A scattershot recollection of moments which touched Coxon or made him fear and fight for who he was at a time when his life was in the public eye and under scrutiny.

From my teenage years until well into adulthood I didn't allow myself to exist quite as much as other people around me did. Whatever the case, I finished the book knowing less about Coxon than I thought I would, especially given the use of the word monster in the title; I was expecting spiky critiques of the risible Country House hit single and the paucity of bonafide thrashers in Blur's back catalogue, but overall Coxon seems quite apologetic about it all, even if he is whining. What came out as 'Verse, Chorus, Monster' this October is difficult to evaluate dispassionately and solely out of interest in his work.

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