Julian Cope: The Modern Antiquarian

Anonymity is everything…

This is one of my favourite documentaries, made by one of the more interesting specimens to emerge fully-formed from the protozoic swamp of rock & roll: Julian Cope. Those who remember him from his brief brushes with fame in the 1980’s, first with The Teardrop Explodes, then as a solo artist, might struggle to assimilate his 1990’s transformation into a passionate enthusiast for the Neo/Paleolithic cultures of Northern/Western Europe. However, a careful reading of his memoirs Head On/Repossessed suggest that it was somehow inevitable. The subject – the mysterious stone circles, mounds and megalithics that can be found all over the British Isles – is often presented in the driest and most passionless form by a slew of forgettable BBC presenters, but here it’s reinvigorated when filtered through Cope’s prism, which often finds unique ways of equating ‘rock’ with ‘rocks’. Inspirational and amusing.

Julian Cope: The Modern Antiquarian


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