Simon Reynolds

Simon Reynolds is the author of Retro­mania: Pop Culture’s Addiction to Its Own Past. He lives in Los Angeles.

Serious Mayhem: The McLaren Strand

Simon Reynolds, 10 March 2022

Ifirstknew Malcolm McLaren as a singer. His was the oily voice on ‘You Need Hands’, which appeared on The Great Rock ’n’ Roll Swindle, a sort of soundtrack album released early in 1979. The film itself, which came out fourteen months later, was a fable charting McLaren’s orchestration of the rise and fall of the band he managed, the Sex Pistols. I knew that...

Wham Bang, Teatime: Bowie

Ian Penman, 5 January 2017

The scene-setting picture of Bowie at home featured black candles and doodled ballpoint stars meant to ward off evil influences. Bowie revealed an enthusiasm for Aleister Crowley’s system of ceremonial...

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Another Tribe: PiL, Wire et al

Andy Beckett, 1 September 2005

In January 1978, the Sex Pistols, then and now the most famous punk band in the world, split up. Johnny Rotten, the band’s singer, most unstable musical element, and most adored and reviled...

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The artistic and creative importance of hip hop, house and techno has been clear for over a decade, but its more recent commercial strength has made dance music unignorable. Money talks. Hip hop...

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