Sunday, 24 April 2011

Kill Your Friends


This finely crafted diatribe of hilarious bile is the first from author John Niven who has gone on to write several more; this fact in itself suggests it was well received!

It is dubbed as one of the filthiest books you will ever read. This isn’t too far from the truth, although I have read worse!

Set over one year in the life of an A&R man in 1997 who is losing his edge as he gets older (he is 27ffs!) it is a clever, funny, awful, repulsive book about the ‘scum’ within the music industry. Our hero admits that no one actually knows how to spot a hit; it is all fluke and b/s from an industry we are led to believe is filled with racist, sexist, perverts who are all caning chang and dropping Es until they simply burn out. Sure, plenty of it is for effect, but as with much effective comedy, there is some truth hidden in the footnotes.

If you like rude, outrageous and as un-pc as you can get, you are going to enjoy this roller coaster of grot. You will even find yourself cheering from the sidelines as our main man dives from one wrong deed and thought to another.

A smart touch is the fact that Niven is frequently citing acts from the period, which is close enough for most of us to remember the musical backdrop. It isn’t just the big acts that are referenced. Who remembers Ether for example, an act that peaked (in the UK at least) as a support act for Ben Folds Five? Even they get a mention amongst the hundreds of other acts in the book…well researched (or remembered) Mr Niven.

I found Kill Your Friends an entertaining and easy read. It is a one hit read – I devoured it in a couple of hours, not because it is short or I am a speed reader, but because it is engrossing, funny and very enjoyable, and requires no real investment from you…provided of course you aren’t easily offended as it is exceptionally offensive indeed. Now go f**k yourself and read another one of my posts!

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