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An album that owes its inspiration to plant food, simultaneously the best (briefly) legal high ever and a chemical gateway into hell, a substance that rips away your inhibitions like flimsy lace knickers and leaves you a raving mess of libido, monomania and naked id.

The dead-eyed intensity of ‘Lying’ and ‘A Wooden Box’, are the perfect soundtrack; lust that sounds like rage, or rage that sounds...

 
 
 

In another, parallel, universe, ‘…Yes Please!’ was different. There, Tony Wilson sent the Mondays to a drug-free Singapore. There, they stayed relatively clean, got on, and made a workmanlike fourth that kept them churning out minor hits throughout Britpop.

In this alternate world, Factory Records still exists. Maybe even Tony is still healthy. It could so easily have been otherwise. After all, we...

 
 
 

The nebulous, half-formed structures of ‘Loveless’, where things swirl around warm and woozy, swimming in and out of focus and suddenly assembling into fascinating patterns before dissipating again, is mushrooms on toast.

Meanwhile, its dissipated sexiness, full of love but much too-fried-out-to-actually-shag, is ecstasy all over.

 
 
 

Perhaps the more accurate alternate title, ‘Madman Passed Out Across The Coke-Dusted Coffee Table’ got shelved by the suits.

Reg’s 1971 classic launched him into a Force 12 blizzard of ’70s cocaine – the kind of don’t-make-’em-like-that-anymore excess that would ultimately see him phoning a hotel reception to get the wind turned off and thinking it was, like, a really good idea to get...

 
 
 

Here’s something to ponder.

If you holed yourself up in a crumbling Victorian mansion and ingested enough Class As to precipitate ego death, perhaps you too could produce an album that sounds as decadent, and as brilliant, as Brett Anderson’s bloated masterpiece.

But you’d probably just die.

 
 
 

Hanging around with David Bowie in 1973 was not for the faint of nostril.

The resulting Dave-helmed record accordingly sounds like it was mixed by people who were hanging round in a white-lined studio at 4am, going, “Fuck it. Why can’t we just turn EVERYTHING up?”

 
 
 

Just say no. That has always been Jason Pierce’s tactic when asked to talk drugs. Invited to take them, Spiritualized’s leader chooses a different line, this album suggests. What’s that he’s singing on ‘Come Together’? “Little J’s a fucking mess but when he’s offered just says YES”.


It’s no surprise. Pierce is a veteran of Spacemen 3: masters of the unsubtle drug reference who...

 
 
 

“Eating up the scum/Is the hardest thing for me to do…” Yes, the wracked ‘Psychocandy’ is a landmark album, a regular in Best Of lists and one of the greatest debuts of all time.

But hey, Reid brothers Jim and William, are these brilliantly lacerating odes about girls – “honey-dripping beehives” and all – or drugs? And does it really matter?

 
 
 

B-Real might have sounded like he’d been puffing on a zeppelin-sized helium balloon, but it was the industrial levels of Grade A sticky-icky the band were inhaling that turned the Hill’s second outing into an jittery soup of shotgun murders and murky bong water.

Eighteen years on, we still have no idea why Sen Dog sounds like he’s curling out a mammoth shit on half his verses, though.

 
 
 

Proof (if proof were indeed needed) that cokeheads really love the existentialist philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. The first part of Mazza’s mom-baiting trilogy expressed as its theme the hope that we could all learn to become more self-involved.

And stick dildos up our arses. And other shit.

 
 
 
 
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