Julian Cope presents Head Heritage

April Drudion

April 2001ce

Guys‘n’Gals of the Cyber Password,

I do hope you're all feeling dandy this beautiful Spring Sunday afternoon. I'm sitting listening to the magnificent L.A.M.F. album after a long walk down the main roads of Wiltshire. As the new tour looms larger each day, I’ve been struggling to find a good fitness routine and routing. Agricultural Britain is such a no go that I’ve taken to having Dorian drop me off in Marlborough – from there I take in all the Kennet villages – Manton, Clatford, Lockeridge and East Kennett – before heading north through Avebury, Avebury Trusloe and up the A4. Though we've finished the album and blown our own minds, the recent Brain Donor recording session began extremely weirdly. As I left the downs for Swindon and the north, my route took me up the A361 through Winterbourne Monkton and Berwick Bassett. Way ahead on dusk’s horizon I could see the burning funeral pyre of animal carcasses below the Broad Hinton white horse. The pall of smoke from the deadly barbeque clouded the sky for miles around and I could still judge its position from the motorway. Local conversation has it that the farmer grew so sickened of waiting days for his animals to be burned that he gave up the wait and did it all himself. Now he’s quarantined for six weeks and his daughter is living separate from the family so that she can get to school each day. He told a friend of mine that shooting the pregnant ewes caused them to abort, so they had to shoot the new born lambs as they appeared from their dead mothers. Does the torture never stop?

In fundamentalist America, The Imposter President George W. Bush has undone what was already a hugely compromised deal to contain greenhouse gasses by saying that he will never jeopardise the economy of America for the greater good of the world. I’d love to write something caustic but I’m entirely speechless. We could respond by banning American tourists from coming to Foot‘n’Mouth Britain, but – hey – they ain’t coming anyway.

In the North Sea, Doggen has just discovered a foul machine which the oil companies use to prepare Mother Earth for her daily rape – this proto-drill bit shoots some kind of liquid chemical into the ground in order to ease the extraction of the oil. We’re gonna get a tape of this Motherfucker at work and alert everyone. In Afghanistan, the Taliban have just reduced the cliff-sized 2000 year old Buddhas to rubble to show their distaste for ‘heathen idols’. Like Christianity, Islam at the height of its power will not tolerate even the vestiges of a former religion. Icons be gone, and they were gone. In 2001CE, what’s the fastest growing religion in Britain? You gottit, babies! Dig Stonehenge and Avebury while they’re still here!

To get a good deal lighter, last month N.M.E., who have taken it upon themselves to nick my Godlike Genius phrase, used it to bestow awardness and thang upon those worthy drivellers U2. Being such a Forward-thinking Motherfucker can have such negative aspects sometimes, but ultimately U-know that the truth WILL PREVAIL!

Hey, my other big rocking fave these past months has been the Nishinihon album – not least because it proves my longstanding assertion that Kiss has a place in the future of underground rock‘n’roll. Nishinihon combines the bass playing and gravel vocals of a Gene Simmons soundalike with the berserker-on-amyl freakbeats of Sir Lord Baltimore. And all of this with ludicrously mistranslated song titles written in the vernacular of Lancashire and the Lakes. The only thing they miss is the make-up – a fundamental flaw that I disapprove of hugely, but not so much that I refuse to headbang the night-and-day-away to every song on the album. Making the Far Out record our Album of the Month has also caused me to return to their other releases, and there's a lotta Turkish psychedelia which has had me doing the knees-up, too. Les Rallizes Denudes are still grabbing my by the poo-poo, but with a 5CD boxed set to wade through, what d’ye expect?

Changes are afoot here at Head Heritage, where congratulations are in order for me darling JoAnne Wilder, who has passed the first twelve weeks of her pregnancy. As all the mothers among you will understand, she didn’t want to announce this news any sooner, but, now that she has, her front-line duties will be somewhat reduced in the coming months. Those of you in regular contact with Head Heritage will already have dealt with JoAnne's assistant Wendy H, and it is Wendy with whom you will be mainly dealing from now on. Administration of the Head Heritage office will still be controlled by Ma Wilder, so she’s not exactly disappearing forever, but I’d like to take this opportunity to thank her for making H.H. so special these past few years.

Finally, look out for the first Brain Donor single, which is released this month. It's in the shops via the Impresario label and it looks almost as good as it sounds. Fluorescent orange, yummy. The new Donor website even has a chatroom – hey, how can you challenge Britney Houston without a chatroom? And that screensaver has been sending me to the Moon! When Brain Donor’s new presswoman asked us for promo photos, I told her we don't do photos – we just got illustrations! Also, the album release date has been brought forward to mid-July, which means that the second Donor single, entitled “Get off your Pretty Face” will also be coming sooner. I’ll leave now and hopefully see y’all on the new tour. I gotta coupla new doublenecks and Donneye’s taking his drums, so we should get into some rabid hoe-downs.

Let those who come to mock remain to rock!

JULIAN (M’Lud Yatesbury)