“The whole sixth form likes The Smiths and he’s listening to Yes!” scoffed Garve one day in the sixth form common room as I foisted 90125 on everyone again. No actually Garve, the whole sixth form does not validate your tastes because they’re not all tossers (not quite), I thought inwardly. Strange that someone who prided himself on being so radical in his politics couldn’t tolerate non-conformity in music preferences. Sadly, I lacked Garve’s raging certitude of the rightness of my own opinion and couldn’t muster the appropriate response, which would have been to pull out a large revolver and empty it into his smug, twitching corpse. Doubtless there would have been denim-clad rockabillies throwing gladioli at his funeral; he’d have liked that.
If only back then, as an alternative to random violence, I’d been able to tell him that one day “How Soon Is Now” would be covered by a couple of Russian pretendy teen lesbians - and they’d do it better.
I hated the Smiths and I loathed Morrissey, and whenever his name is again feted and sainted in the press I loathe him afresh. All that “Oh, this cruel, uncaring world is such torture for exquisitely sensitive and lonely yet handsome souls such as I, oh woe, oh misery, the Establishment’s got it in for me!” crap…here’s the lithium, now fuck off back to the dingy bedsit that your parents bought for you and take an overdose (he said from behind a Margaret Thatcher face mask). Our other resident Smiths fan used to sit in front of the common room stereo in his M&S cardie, playing The Queen Is Dead and staring hard at the floor while he feigned contemplation of the tragedy of his pitiful existence - an existence that I regretted without any need for pretence.
“So you go and you stand on your own, And you leave on your own, And you go home, and you cry, and you want to die”
That situation rang true for most of my teenage years and yet I still had no sympathy for poor, maltreated Steven when he whinged about it in the aforementioned song.
On the other hand, take a couple of young Russian pop starlets, a shit-hot production team (featuring Trevor Horn), a dodgy lipstick lesbian makeover and you get not only a tailor-made tabloid stunt but also, for once, a great album and some hot lesbo action (Britney take heed)! I can hear the objections already, but I just can’t see it working with real lesbians. Real lesbians would be like: (Pattie and Selma voices) “Uh, I gotta headache tonight.” - “Huh, me too!” Whereas pretendy ones at least have to look like they’re enjoying themselves, right? As No Rock’n’ Roll Fun noted, even sex-crazed lesbians don’t do it three times a week, let alone a day. Tatu do though, honestly. Think how much better other female pop acts would have been with a sapphic shtick: Atomic Kitten, Bananarama…MEL & KIM! And some decent tunes.
Obviously, Tatu’s version of “How Soon Is Now” isn’t quite like the original. For a start, it has decent vocals. Listen to them defiantly belting out “You shut your mouth, how can you say I go about things the wrong way!” and compare it to Morrissey’s limp sighing. He wrote those words but only had the one note to sing them with, whereas Julia and Lena can barely pronounce them but still put maximum feeling into it - albeit a totally different feeling (bored disinterest, I think, but that’s better than whining self-pity). And check the heavy riffing added by the session guitarist! Not only that, but you get the singles in English and Russian, plus their Eurovision entry, which knocks the spots off “Congratulations” and “Making your mind up”, plus a bonus DVD featuring Julia and Lena on a bed in their undies! And all for four quid from the remainders bin.
“I’m so glad you wanted this album,” I told my Glamorous Research Assistant. “I thought you wouldn’t be interested.”
“I didn’t mind, you’re the one who stood in the shop looking like a sad pervert for buying it,” she replied.
Actually, I was more concerned that people would think that the other album I was buying for her was mine: “The Nelly Furtado CD is a gift for someone else, honest! Mine’s the Tatu album! I’m going to take it home and wank over the free poster like any normal man! I like Morrissey too!”
From now on, I want all my music to be sung by pretendy teen lesbians (and produced by Trevor Horn - Yes, take note when deciding the next line-up). Otherwise, I don’t wanna hear it.
Incidentally, just think what this entry is gonna do for my Google wan…I mean, ranking.
Standout tracks: All The Things She Said; How Soon Is Now; Ne Ver, Ne Boisia