Primal Scream’s Bobby Gillespie: “Rock is like Latin, it’s a dying language”

“Guys in rock bands dress like they've come to fix your electrics.”

Bobby Gillespie has said that he thinks rock music is “a dying language” in a new interview.

Speaking to The Daily Telegraph, the Primal Scream frontman said he thought there was more “inventiveness” now in genres like rap and grime than there is in rock music.

Gillespie said: “Rock is like Latin, it’s a dying language, it’s old, it’s finished, and it really has nothing more to say,” adding: “Guys in rock bands dress like they’ve come to fix your electrics.”


Speaking about rap, he said: “It’s like they’re talking an occult language, and that’s how it should be. It’s got irony, intelligence, inventiveness, sex and danger.

“You’ve got rappers on acid going mental on stage, skinny, covered in tattoos, crazy coloured hair, high fashion, some of them wear dresses…There’s not one sex symbol in white rock anymore, cause there’s no sex in it.

“It’s very solipsistic, so inward looking, it’s all me, me, me. Rock is dead.”

Bobby Gillespie

Gillespie went on to say that he still “loves” rock, despite his feelings. “It’s a paradox, I know. I love rock ‘n’ roll, it’s a great democratic art form, and I’m glad there’s still kids playing it. I’m a rocker ’til I die.”

Meanwhile, the band are gearing up for a busy season of shows on the festival circuit. The band play London’s All Points East Festival today and are due to play the Neighbourhood Weekender in Warrington and Latitude Festival. They’ll also headline Edinburgh Summer Sessions in August.


Today, the band have also released a new compilation, ‘Maximum Rock ‘N’ Roll: The Singles’. As the title suggests, it’ll be a full collection of all the band’s singles to date.

Last year, Bobby Gillespie was called a “miserable Jock” by BBC Politics host Andrew Neil after the pair shared an awkward TV appearance on the show. Primal Scream had shared a haunting mock-up of Neil following the infamous episode, where Gillespie refused to join the host and his fellow guests in dancing.