Archive for the ‘Nostalgia’ Category



Anyone who knows me in person knows that I’m a big fan of The Smiths; the title of this very blog is taken from the name of a compilation of theirs. Earlier this year, my lovely other half arranged a surprise trip to Manchester for my birthday, knowing that I’ve wanted to go for years and traipse the hallowed paths that Morrissey, Johnny Marr, Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce once did.

There are guided tours for this sort of thing, but they didn’t seem to be running in February, or else you needed to have a group in order to book – so we took it upon ourselves to make our own way around the city to see some Smiths-related sites. Manchester isn’t that big and the public transport is great, so it was relatively easy to get around to a few places over the course of a morning. Maybe this post will come in handy for other people planning a similar trip, because there’s not that much sensible info out there.

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The Entertainment Editor of The Irish Post recently asked me to write about my longstanding and occasionally irrational love of Morrissey, to coincide with the release of ‘Morrissey 25: Live from Hollywood High’. Sometimes, you just have to put your journalistic impartiality to one side and allow your inner rabid fangirl to run rampant. 

Originally published in The Irish Post, August 28th 2013.


A KITCHEN sink may sound like a strange place to fall head over heels in love with a band, but in a way it is the perfect setting for a love affair with The Smiths, who drew so much of their imagery and lyrical inspiration from the ‘kitchen sink’ dramas of the 1950s and 1960s.

I still remember the moment clearly; it was 2001 and I was in my parents’ house, washing the dishes and listening to the Very Best Of CD that I’d bought earlier that day. The music shop that I was working in part-time had been playing this new collection on a daily basis, and I like to think that even as I went about the monotonous task of stickering CDs and answering inane customer queries, the music was subconsciously seeping into my brain.

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There are some albums that you just inexplicably have a soft spot for. ‘Be Here Now‘ is one of mine. Continue reading


In a way, it’s the perennial ‘muso’ question: what was your first album? Say it’s Boyzone, and you’re scoffed at. Inheriting your older brother’s Neil Young album, on the other hand, gains you instant cool points.

Well, mine was neither (although I have absolutely no shame in revealing that my first gig was Take That at the Point Depot in 1994), but for years, I actually could not remember what my first-ever album was. I remember vividly remember going into town to buy my first singles on tape and CD, though. Continue reading


Might get a bit of slagging for this one, but in that case, well…. feck off. Continue reading


I couldn’t fall asleep until a ridiculous hour last night, and for some reason ended up wandering around the deserted social network graveyard that is my MySpace account. I never use it anymore, but it was fun reading back through the messages (once I’d spent a good ten minutes cracking the password). Continue reading


There’s a really good piece over on The Quietus today about JJ72‘s first album, as well as an interview with frontman Mark Greaney that’s worth reading.

I can’t believe that this album is ten years old. It’s one of the first times in my life that I’ve felt like I’m getting old. Continue reading