The end of an old year and the start of a new one is perfect for musohacks to fill up space in their dog-eared magazines and laggy websites. December sees retrospectives that tend to be useless insofar as it’s stuff you and they already know. Come the new year, come a new way to fleece your audience; the BBC’s Sound of <year> collection is heavily plagiarised as writer’s pokerface us and say “Hey, we knew about this lot all along!”
What seperates Sputnik Music from the other sites is the technology available to us. For reasons best left unknown, all staff now have access to a computer that pings emails from the future. One future staff member (name not revealed so as to prevent paradox) decided to reveal the big talking points on a year ahead for us, but one already forgotten for them:
- Captain Beefheart returns from the grave! Not content with being dead, the man also known as Don Van Vliet found out the other side just wasn’t as cool as he thought it would be. His return was heralded as one of the most shocking of all time, and his move onto the lucrative after-dinner speech circuit propelled him right into the heart of public affairs. It wasn’t to last, however. After attempting to strangle Barack Obama at a $10,000 a head White House dinner, the Captain caught fire and quickly combusted in the Oval Office. His last words? “Ah feel like battery acid.” Eventually it transpired that Beefheart wasn’t actually dead. Nor had he ever been alive. What we knew as the Captain was actually a robot designed by Jon Van Vliet, AKA Captain Bee Fart. This keen apiarist turned reclusive inventor suffered from crippling bouts of stage-fright, leading to the creation of the avant garde android. Finally, it turned out THAT too was a ruse and the whole thing was a contrived Kraftwerk practical joke. It was then declared “genius” by all on Earth.
- English football manager Harry Redknapp, not long away from a spell with Queens Park Rangers that saw the club relocate to Calais before plummeting into bankruptcy and protracted court battles, decided to turn his back on the business that had made his name. Realising that the game was awash with nefarious characters, money-hungry fools and starry-eyed morons, Redknapp realised he could soon use this knowledge of the worst of society and apply it quickly to the music biz. Almost at once he found an in; a newly-reformed Oasis needed a strong and experienced intermediary to contain the perpetually-warring Gallagher brothers. From his car window, Redknapp talked up his new charges: “‘triffic boys, Oasis, always loved ’em. Yeah so Liam’s had a fatwa put on him after a succession of awful haircuts, but it’s a blip.” Fans of the original Oasis were up in arms after the Gallaghers were quickly replaced by Jermain Defoe and Peter Crouch.
Although they were perhaps the two biggest stories of the year, there were little tidbits elsewhere. Gary Numan, author of 80s hit “Cars”, turned his efforts towards environmental conservation after a drunken bout of guilt made him realise that the amount of greenhouse gases in the Earth’s atmosphere may have accelerated rapidly thanks to his loving ode to the automobile.
Finally, North Korean rap group Gin & Juche were in the headlines repeatedly for the wild European tour. The Pyongyang collective, famous for their state-edited (i.e. totally censored) lyrics were seen partying the nights away; eating, drinking and laughing without fear of being raped and murdered. Until they got to London, that is. Despite the language barrier and lyrical problems (all live performances are bleeped over in accordance with North Korean statute) this six-strong group have a bright, censored future ahead of them.
…and now you know what to expect. Don’t say you weren’t warned.