Book Review: Summertime Peruse

He died onstage, not on the page

Summertime Peruse

Headpress, 420 pp., $19.95 (paper)

Mick Farren, English counterculture legend, rocker, lyricist for (among others) Motörhead, sci-fi author, cultural critic, and raconteur, died last July onstage in London, performing with his reconstituted psych/protopunk band the Deviants, six weeks shy of turning 70. Published last May, Elvis Died for Somebody's Sins is thus Farren's last will and testament, anthologizing work going back to his first days in the underground UK press on the staff of IT in 1967. It roars through his mid-Seventies stint at NME, including his classic sneer at bloated rock culture, "The Titanic Sails at Dawn," which heralded the oncoming punks, and culls years of columns for publications from Trouser Press and The Los Angeles Times to his own Doc 40 blog. A sampling of lyrics includes "Lost Johnny," penned with Lemmy when Hawkwind needed to fill an album; Metallica's cover kept Farren in whiskey, Coca-Cola, and cigarettes for years. A book review could never communicate Mick Farren's importance, his mordant, justifiably paranoid vision, his blinding wit. This anthology does.

READ MORE
More Music Reviews
Rock & Roll Books
Seduced By Sound: Austin
Seduced By Sound: Austin – 100 Musicians on Why They Make Music

Kevin Curtin, Dec. 9, 2016

Gift Guide: Rock & Roll Books
Pretty Paper: A Christmas Tale
Pretty Paper: A Christmas Tale

Tim Stegall, Dec. 9, 2016

More by Tim Stegall
Critics Poll
Critics Poll

Dec. 30, 2016

Top 10 National Albums of 2016
Top 10 National Albums of 2016
Our favorite picks from across the country

Dec. 30, 2016

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Mick Farren, Lemmy

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)