The Teardrop Explodes – Zoology

"Unreleased and rareness" from the capacious archives of Cope

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Now his vast tome on monolithic Europe is finally complete, Julian Cope has, rather sweetly, redirected his Odinist energies to his personal ancient history. Zoology is, belatedly, a kind of musical companion to his 1994 autobiography Head-On, tracing the Teardrops’ unsteady evolution from organ-drenched psych-punks to cavalier pop outsiders. Sixteen band members are psychically battered in the process, but the results are frequently magical: a belligerent live version of “Sleeping Gas”; a sepulchrally gloomy demo of “You Disappear From View” that is, according to Cope, “recorded as it should have sounded before the group got their mitts on it”. Best of all, he magnanimously exhumes a clammy, intense take on “Books” by A Shallow Madness, the Teardrops forerunners fronted by Ian McCulloch. McCulloch sounds agitated and imperious. Within weeks, Cope had sacked him.


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The Velvet Underground, The Black Crowes, Bunny Wailer, Richard Thompson, Nick Cave, Rhiannon Giddens, Laurie Anderson, Blake Mills, Postcard Records, Mogwai and The Selecter