Reader Sinjin Smith writes: “While reading over your year in review lists, I was struck by your inclusion of Air’s latest ‘Pocket Symphony’ among you top 10. I’m not as fond of it as you are, but that’s not the point. I was more intrigued by your thoughts on ‘Pocket Symphony’ collaborator Jarvis Cocker. I’ve been reading your columns for years, and I’ve found nary a mention of Jarvis or Pulp amongst your writing… I’m curious to hear your opinion on them, whether you’ve even given the band proper consideration, or if you’ve simply written them off as also-ran/wannabes.”
To this I say: Pulp rocked, Cocker rocks, and I’ve said so plenty of times!
I gave the last Jarvis Cocker solo album its props with a three-star review shortly after its release, and it actually grew on me more as the year progressed. In fact, I will now admit that it definitely deserved a spot on my Top 50 list — say, somewhere between 20 and 30 — and because I am a bonehead, I simply forgot to include it. Doh!
I also attacked Pulp’s exclusion from The London Observer’s list of “The 100 Best British Albums of All Time” when they asked me to give “the yank’s perspective” in 2004, and ranked “This is Hardcore” on the list of my favorite albums of 1998. I know I love and gave positive reviews to several other Pulp discs, too, as well as its first live performance in Chicago at the Riviera, but I’ll be damned if I can find those articles/links at the moment.
Anyway, I hope you’ll grant that I’ve done Pulp right. The group was certainly light years better than, say, Oasis. Though Blur remains my choice for the best of the Britpoppers.