Friday, 28 January 2011

The Rise & Fall & Rise & Fall of Sophie Ellis-Bextor.

The other day when I was in the shower, I found myself thinking about Sophie Ellis-Bextor.
No, not like that, you filthy, nasty people.
No, I suddenly got a song by theaudience stuck in my head. Remember theaudience? They were her band years ago. The song was "I Know Enough (I Dont Get Enough)." This kind of typified the band in general. They were slightly joylessly pretentious, like so many of the late Britpop bands were, because they liked the intelligence of Britpop, but not the pop. They were paid attention to though, because pretty much everyone fancied Sophie Ellis-Bextor.
I'm not saying that just as some sort of personal judgement on their music, I clearly remember Sophie Ellis-Bextor on Channel 4's 'The Jo Whiley Show' (remember that? That slightly joylessly pretentious show from the late Britpop era? There seems to be a theme here...), having a go at Neil Hannon (he of The Divine Comedy, a joyFULLY pretentious non-Britpop band of the same era (and still going strong in fact)) asking him something along the lines of how could he look himself in the mirror each morning after being a guest singer on the then latest Robbie Williams album. She basically called him a massive sellout, then a couple of years later did that song with Spiller.
That's a bizarre collaboration right there. A successful European dj collaborates on a track with an unknown singer from a forgotten indie band. It would be like if Tiesto did a track with the guy from Terris (remember them? They were 'the best new band in the world' who were going to set the world on fire but thru a process of massive overhype just fizzled out and became ignored. I actually have their album somewhere. Can't remember what it sounds like now). It would just be weird. But somehow this collaboration worked and Sophie did better than ever, by dropping the pretention and embracing the pop, something a couple of years previously she'd have called someone a sell-out for doing.
Then came her solo album, which was gonna be huge, right? Right?
Well, not really. It was fairly popular, but where I work, we still had copies from our initial orders left over YEARS later, that we only managed to shift once they'd been marked down to £1. Even then I think we've still got some copies lurking around somewhere.

So, erm, I've kind of forgotten the point of writing this. I just kind of thought it was interesting her career has had two rise and falls, that's all. theaudience were seen as a promising band, they petered out. Her solo career looked promising, it petered out, although I believe she is still going, determined to get that third rise. Poor girl. I hope she's a pessimist.

(That's a very clever (God, I'm good) reference to another song by theaudience, 'A Pessimist Is Never Disappointed' which, by the way, as a statement, is bollocks. Pessimism thrives on disappointment. It couldn't survive without it. You fool.)

1 comment:

Pipsywoo said...

I bet she's loving life, being married to that guy from The Feeling!