The deaths of Mark Hollis and Keith Flint so close together this month robbed us of two immensely talented, though wildly different, musicians. If Hollis’ story was ultimately about retreating from the public eye, leaving a slender but perfectly curated body of work behind, Flint was still very much active in as immediate and startling a way possible.
As Graeme Thomson’s masterful tribute to Hollis makes clear, it is unlikely he planned a triumphant return to the stage; he simply didn’t want to make music for public consumption any longer. All the same, it was possible to hope that he might reconsider his position. Now, alas, that day will never come. With Flint’s loss, meanwhile, we are robbed of a potent and charismatic performer; a man who, in his own way, left just as indelible a mark on his audience as Hollis.
But there is good news, too. Elsewhere in this issue, you’ll find Stephen Deusner’s remarkable interview with Al Green: one of the great survivors from the golden age of soul performers. Indeed, we first encounter Green in full-tilt, preaching to his congregation down in Memphis where his vitality in the pulpit belies his 72 years. Similarly, Mott The Hoople celebrate triumph over adversity while our cover story marks 50 years since Neil Young & Crazy Horse’s debut, Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere – a union that has endured, often shakily, up to the present day. Here, Young, Billy Talbot, Poncho Sampedro, Nils Lofgren and others recall high times and tall tales with the Horse.
As part of our commitment to bringing you the best new music, you can also read features on Big Thief and The Oh Sees. In our albums pages, we review brilliant new records by Weyes Blood, Kevin Morby, Aldous Harding and Shana Cleveland while in Karma we introduce Drugdealer – whose debut Raw Honey is one of my favourite albums of the year so far. There are more familiar faces, too – Damo Suzuki answers your questions, Shaun Ryder discusses his new career as an author, some of David Bowie’s earliest work comes under the spotlight and the chillingly prophetic qualities of a classic Heaven 17 song are revealed.
As ever, we humbly hope you enjoy the issue. There’s something for everyone, we believe.
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The May 2019 issue of Uncut is on sale from March 21, and available to order online now – with Neil Young on the cover. Inside, you’ll find Mark Hollis, Jimi Hendrix, Al Green, Oh Sees, Damo Suzuki, Mott The Hoople, Big Thief, Love, Kristin Hersh, Shaun Ryder and much more. Our 15-track CD also showcases the best of the month’s new music, including Weyes Blood, Kevin Morby, Richard Dawson, Fat White Family, Shana Cleveland, Drugdealer and Mekons.