Saturday, April 25, 2009


"Dizzyingly erudite and compulsively readable, Totally Wired is a book to savour"--Hot Press

"A compelling oral history… This is also a fine cultural study: revisiting a now quaintly primitive age, when aspiring musicians staved off the boredom of interminable Sunday afternoons by re-reading the music papers and listening to tapes of John Peel's radio shows. On every level, Totally Wired is never less than fascinating"-- Q

"Essentially, what we have here are the interviews with the musicians, label bosses and producers which formed the backbone of Reynolds's research for Rip It Up… Where that first volume arched vastly over the full panoply of post-punk, Totally Wired breaks down into the individual constituents, the people on the ground level, taking punk's failed rhetoric and twisting it into new shapes. Basically, here are the human interest angles…. Fascinating reading"--Plan B

"A healthy dose of musical escapism thanks not only to the author's chats with David Byrne, Edwyn Collins et al, but his reflections on the musical events of the time. There's no finer way to learn about what happened before you were born…"--NME

"With… Rip It Up And Start Again…. Simon Reynolds became the flag-waver for the importance of post-punk to pop music from 1978 to 1984 - a scene…. where The Cure, Echo And The Bunnymen, Public Image Limited and Scritti Politti could exist in the same space simply by sharing the same double-headed ethos of innovation and oddness…. [Totally Wired] brings together a collection of people who recall that spirit of possibility so vividly you end up wanting to believe them all …. There's so much to take in and enjoy" ---Metro

"Rip It Up And Start Again… has very few serious rivals as the greatest music book of this decade…. an astonishing feat of research and a breathtakingly illuminating piece of writing. Three years on, Rip It Up has a companion piece on the shelves…. Using a simple Q-and-A format, Reynolds sets about getting to the bottom of what made these people tick creatively, why they made the strange and often magnificent music that they did, and what the social and cultural forces behind that music were. Some of these people, such as former KLF provocateur Bill Drummond or the late Tony Wilson, could talk the legs off a giraffe…. There's no shortage of laugh-out-loud moments either… Reynolds has included 90 odd pages of his own archive material as an appendix which, if anything, is even stronger than the main body of interview material….. Strongly recommended."-- Sunday Business Post

"Plenty of entertainment and interest for the post-punk reader"--Mojo

"Some former colleagues of Reynolds’ at… Melody Maker… still refer to him as “the master"…. This is perhaps because his approach to his subject is usually infectiously enthusiastic and well researched, with a finely balanced mix of theory and factual analysis…. [In Totally Wired] Reynolds has whittled an impressive 100-plus interviews down to 32, concentrating on those with interesting points to make/ stories to tell. This means we don’t get to hear from a slightly prickly Howard Devoto but we do get to hear Gerald Casale of Devo talking about the fatal clashes between anti-Vietnam protestors and the National Guard at Kent State University, and Linder Sterling of Ludus’ refreshingly different view of Mancunian musical history. Masterful indeed."--Record Collector

"As an interviewer, Reynolds's boyish enthusiasm is a joy"--The Wire

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