Seconds Out! With the festival season coming on quicker than Frank Carter at a two-for-one sale at Mr Tattoo, British pop looks set for its biggest gender stand-off since the great NME/Huggy Bear bust up of 1993 (ask your dad).
In the Mockney corner, a vowel-scrambling tag-team of Winehouse, Allen and Nash, each with enough bloke-related grievances to hold their own at a Beth Ditto sleepover.
From the provinces, Kyle ‘Same Jeans’ View, Mince Fratelli and Tom from The Enemy – all adamant that the path to relationship nirvana comes via beer and soiled clothing.
So thank the stars that the might of the Midlands have combined to avert potential Asbo–related pop bloodshed. “I used to think every night alone was a soirée wasted/ Until me and you got heartily wasted/And lay in the daisies” croons Mike Skinner, who’s clearly inspired to greatness by Pete Doherty’s genius take on The Streets’ ‘Prangin’ Out’. “I feel so much better today/Chase the bad things away” bellows Martin Saunders in response, final proof that lager consumption is good for music. Meanwhile, the central guitar riff from ‘Either Way’ throbs away, Phil Etheridge yells, “I loov ya!” and the perfect soundtrack to a frazzled summer fizzes through NME Towers. A Brum Rush. Fantasy Stone Island. An estate of mind.