Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Not Abba: The Real Story of the 1970's

The basic premise of this fine read from Dave Haslam is that the 70's were not as simple as 'Abba ruled and then Punk happened' and the music of those 10 year's needs to be viewed as a reflection of the deep changes happening politically, socially, & economically in Britain with each year reflecting a distinct phase of this progress.

Sound's heavy but actually ends up being a good story that provides an insight to that period, using a combination of credible mainstream sources and individuals who lived through the period, and presents it as being a lot more dynamic, real, and interesting than I had known before. It also throws up some interesting theories on the music scene's development, such as Northern Soul having been responsible for the independent music store scene that let Punk blossom, the twee Pop Music of the early 70's being an attempt to get back to the pre-war simplicity of the 1930's, and that Two-Tone was a reflection of British working class life rather than an attempt at creating 'unity'.

All great stuff, until the final section of the final chapter when Margaret Thatcher gets elected and your left with nothing but Tory bashing all the way into 1984, which is apparently when both music and the 70's ended.
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