Thursday 13 September 2012

"What Happened To Razorlight?"

The other week on Twitter Simon posed the question,  What happened to Razorlight?  Not in a,  where are they now context but in a how did they become so shit so quickly after the release of the first album way.  It is a good question and I think that the answer is that Johnny Borrell started believing his own hype and sacrificed good songs for ones that he knew would resonate with the most people and as a consequence would make him the huge star that he already was in his own mind. This is probably bollocks but is my theory and I'm sticking to it.

I first came across Razorlight one night in 2002 when they were supporting the Raveonettes at King Tut's in October 2003 around the time of their first single, Rip It Up. I thought they were brilliant, the singer a bit full of himself but the band were full of energy with a great set of songs.

I started banging on about them to anybody who would listen and saw them on three subsequent occasions the final time eventually persuading a couple of mates to tag along to the Arches.

From the off it looked as if the band were just going through the motions and the sound was muddy, a common complaint with gigs at the Arches. And then the gig was over after just under 40 minutes. We walked to the car with me trying to convince the other two that they were a lot better than that when I had seen them before but I could see that they were sceptical. I'm not sure how good Razorlight were live after that as the next time they played Glasgow was after the release of the awful second album and I didn't have the inclination to find out if they were any better than the night at the Arches.

I think that I have played the second album about 5 times, the first time in anticipation and the further four trying to find any redeeming tracks other than the lead single In The Morning which itself was at best quite good, but to no avail. Since then I have had no interest in the band and couldn't tell you if they have had any subsequent releases or even if they are still going, though I suspect not.

Anyway, here is a favourite track from the first one and now that I look at it one of the few album tracks that wasn't released as a single or on a b-side, a bit of a rip-off really.

Razorlight - Which Way Is Out


Simon said...

Heh, becoming quite a habit to mention me in your posts. People will talk. That first album though is bloody great. It feels like a great punk album, and it's just the right side of Gen X, with more than a helping of the New York stuff. I really like the sort of rhythmic vocal line on this, it's really jaggedy, if that makes sense. Properly angular and really exciting. They changed so much afterwards that I'm almost ashamed to like this so much.

dickvandyke said...

I saw that lead singer fellow once backstage at some festival or other. (I wasn't camping, or getting down with the stars or anything, just there drinking beer on some freebie).
Anyway, I had no real concept of who he was, but he clearly did. He was a bit of what my old gran would call 'a clever trousers' and saw himself as a pleasurer of womenkind. He was poncing about without a shirt on and, as the evening was quickly drawing in, I helpfully suggested that he may wish to cover up or risk a chill on his kidneys. He took up a devil-may-care stance and, 'though I wish him no ill, I would have had little sympathy had he subsequently been hampered by an upper respitory infection.
In sum, such poor attention to his own welfare may be a reflection of his sloppy attitude to writing and recording sustainable popular music.

Pint anyone?

davyh said...

Cheers Dickie, don't mind if I do. Bag of dry roasted too if you're going.

I never saw what the fuss was all about with this lot. Possibly skinny-trousered types just no longer do it for me. 'Golden Touch' or whatever it was called was a jolly pop song. Perhaps they should have stuck to jolly pop songs.

Ffft. WhaddoIknow.

Swiss Adam said...

A pint would be great. never liked 'em. Razorlight I mean.

Anonymous said...

they played a gig at epsom racecourse a few months ago. but then so did peter andre.

Unknown said...

I, sad old thing that I am, liked everything they did. Great to jog t and I loved the class based lyrics. So yah boo sucks not everyone thought that just the first album was good.