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I Formed A Band

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10 years ago, with my friends, I formed a band called Art Brut. We have a new album out later this year. It has been quite a while since our last record. So, to get yourself reacquainted with us, I suggest you buy this book, my memoir. I've spent the last three years writing 'I Formed a Band'. The story begins with me playing the vacuum cleaner on stage in Poole, and ends u 10 years ago, with my friends, I formed a band called Art Brut. We have a new album out later this year. It has been quite a while since our last record. So, to get yourself reacquainted with us, I suggest you buy this book, my memoir. I've spent the last three years writing 'I Formed a Band'. The story begins with me playing the vacuum cleaner on stage in Poole, and ends up with Art Brut recording Art Brut VS Satan with Black Francis in Salem, Oregon In between you will discover the answers to these questions. Just how hard did I kick Paul McCartney when I met him? What colour did Russell Senior from Pulp try and make me sing in? Which of Art Brut's songs is Liam Gallagher's favourite, and did Oasis really sing a Half Man Half Biscuit song at me? Or was it a psychotic episode? What is it like to get into a fight with The Magic Numbers, Kele from Bloc Party and various members of The Bravery? (luckily not all at the same time). What question did Conan O'Brien ask Jasper Future that he didn't know the answer to? Why does Al Jourgensen from Ministry think I am a famous singer called Franz Ferdinand with a hit single about my penis? What valuable lesson did I learn from Anton Newcombe at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre Colorado? Plus much, much, more...


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10 years ago, with my friends, I formed a band called Art Brut. We have a new album out later this year. It has been quite a while since our last record. So, to get yourself reacquainted with us, I suggest you buy this book, my memoir. I've spent the last three years writing 'I Formed a Band'. The story begins with me playing the vacuum cleaner on stage in Poole, and ends u 10 years ago, with my friends, I formed a band called Art Brut. We have a new album out later this year. It has been quite a while since our last record. So, to get yourself reacquainted with us, I suggest you buy this book, my memoir. I've spent the last three years writing 'I Formed a Band'. The story begins with me playing the vacuum cleaner on stage in Poole, and ends up with Art Brut recording Art Brut VS Satan with Black Francis in Salem, Oregon In between you will discover the answers to these questions. Just how hard did I kick Paul McCartney when I met him? What colour did Russell Senior from Pulp try and make me sing in? Which of Art Brut's songs is Liam Gallagher's favourite, and did Oasis really sing a Half Man Half Biscuit song at me? Or was it a psychotic episode? What is it like to get into a fight with The Magic Numbers, Kele from Bloc Party and various members of The Bravery? (luckily not all at the same time). What question did Conan O'Brien ask Jasper Future that he didn't know the answer to? Why does Al Jourgensen from Ministry think I am a famous singer called Franz Ferdinand with a hit single about my penis? What valuable lesson did I learn from Anton Newcombe at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre Colorado? Plus much, much, more...

30 review for I Formed A Band

  1. 4 out of 5

    Nigeyb

    Look at me, I read a book A self-published, crowd-funded memoir by Eddie Argos, the Art Brut mainman - it cost me £20 I think, but it was signed by Eddie and it came with its own bookmark and a nice badge. It also weighs a lot for a paperback. Whatever else you might say, Eddie did not stint on the GSM. "I Formed A Band" is an undemanding, fun read which tells how Eddie did indeed form a band - Art Brut (among others) - which is just as well, as that is all he ever wanted to do and having burned a Look at me, I read a book A self-published, crowd-funded memoir by Eddie Argos, the Art Brut mainman - it cost me £20 I think, but it was signed by Eddie and it came with its own bookmark and a nice badge. It also weighs a lot for a paperback. Whatever else you might say, Eddie did not stint on the GSM. "I Formed A Band" is an undemanding, fun read which tells how Eddie did indeed form a band - Art Brut (among others) - which is just as well, as that is all he ever wanted to do and having burned all his other bridges. He was also the nicest traffic warden in London, for a while. Despite not being a natural singer he has, since 2003, through seemingly boundless enthusiasm, managed to carve out a career of sorts as one of those English eccentrics operating on the fringes of popular music - like Luke Haines, Martin Newell, Billy Childish, Robyn Hitchcock - and beloved by a small but fervent group of fans. As comedian Stewart Lee has worked out, if you can get the 10,000 or so people that like you, to part with £5-10 a year you can get by. If you like Eddie Argos, or Art Brut, chances are you will like this, if you don't, you still might like it. Read it - if you can find a copy - and you will discover the answers to these questions: Just how hard did Eddie kick Paul McCartney when he met him? What colour did Russell Senior from Pulp try and make Eddie sing in? Which of Art Brut's songs is Liam Gallagher's favourite, and did Oasis really sing a Half Man Half Biscuit song at Eddie? Or was it a psychotic episode? What is it like to get into a fight with The Magic Numbers, Kele from Bloc Party and various members of The Bravery? What question did Conan O'Brien ask Jasper Future that he didn't know the answer to? Why does Al Jourgensen from Ministry think Eddie is a famous singer called Franz Ferdinand with a hit single about his penis? What valuable lesson did Eddie learn from Anton Newcombe at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre Colorado? 4/5

  2. 5 out of 5

    Mike Cramer

    Funny throughout and touching at points. Eddie is charming but introspective, insecure without being self-hating. Much inside rock and roll, but not name dropping or aggrandizing. Lovely all around.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Emma Reed

    If you are even remotely interested in Eddie the man or Art Brut the band then the style and content will be to your liking.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Alex Sarll

    My subconscious does a lot of my best work. Including, yesterday, my decision finally to get around to this, a book I'd been putting off for a while for fear of overlap with Eddie's one-man show of the same name, which I saw recently and at which I acquired my copy. (I needn't have worried - the show does follow the same trajectory, but only covers the first quarter or so of the book) Because, although my conscious mind was utterly oblivious to the timing until it happened, yesterday evening Eddie My subconscious does a lot of my best work. Including, yesterday, my decision finally to get around to this, a book I'd been putting off for a while for fear of overlap with Eddie's one-man show of the same name, which I saw recently and at which I acquired my copy. (I needn't have worried - the show does follow the same trajectory, but only covers the first quarter or so of the book) Because, although my conscious mind was utterly oblivious to the timing until it happened, yesterday evening Eddie's new Image graphic novel Double D got officially announced. The graphic novel that I'm editing. So thanks, subconscious (thubconscious) for cunningly giving me the perfect excuse for a spot of Goodreads self-promotion. I first met Eddie in the very early days of Art Brut, his main band and the one whose story he tells here. He accosted me at a gig and told me that, although he'd seen online that I didn't like Art Brut, anyone who liked David Devant was OK by him. Which was of course so thoroughly gracious that it soon won me round to Art Brut. There are several similar incidents in this book; in aggregate, the lesson which can be drawn from them is that so long as you don't get fighty, meeting someone whose band you don't initially rate (or vice versa) generally presents a surmountable obstacle. They contribute to the overall impression, despite how unbearable Eddie insists he could be, of a thoroughly nice chap - which is surely a large part of why he's got away with such a ridiculous, brilliant career as a cult frontman despite (by his own admission) not really being able to sing. All of which is a very roundabout way of saying that I can't feign even a hint of objectivity in reviewing this book*. But my entirely untrustworthy opinion is that it's a funny, inspirational story about how, despite all odds, you can achieve a fair few of your dreams - but you probably won't get as rich as you'd hoped in the process. *Though obviously I can be a bit more stern regarding the sub-editing - it was done by someone else I know, and for whose other work I have huge respect, but who doesn't have quite the OCD eye required for tidying up Argos English. If I do say so myself.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Dan Coxon

    Fantastic memoir from Eddie 'Art Brut' Argos. Very funny, occasionally wise, always entertaining. Like eating a packet of Jammy Dodgers while listening to Appetite For Destruction. Deserves to become a classic! Fantastic memoir from Eddie 'Art Brut' Argos. Very funny, occasionally wise, always entertaining. Like eating a packet of Jammy Dodgers while listening to Appetite For Destruction. Deserves to become a classic!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Dana

    Typos aside, I had a really fun time reading this. Eddie is wrong though - I would have loved reading more about how lovely Maximo Park are. I am also genuinely a bit worried about his drinking habit now.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jack Silbert

    I don’t remember how the band Art Brut entered my life a decade ago — did I read a review? did my friend Christine recommend them? — but that debut album, Bang Bang Rock & Roll, really did it for me. Soon my buddies Allan and Jim were fans too. Leader Eddie Argos wasn’t the most gifted singer ever (he basically spoke his way through songs), but he was smart and funny and represented us, the awkward boys. We all had an “Emily Kane” in our lives. Plus, the band rocked. For reasons that also escape I don’t remember how the band Art Brut entered my life a decade ago — did I read a review? did my friend Christine recommend them? — but that debut album, Bang Bang Rock & Roll, really did it for me. Soon my buddies Allan and Jim were fans too. Leader Eddie Argos wasn’t the most gifted singer ever (he basically spoke his way through songs), but he was smart and funny and represented us, the awkward boys. We all had an “Emily Kane” in our lives. Plus, the band rocked. For reasons that also escape me, I’ve only gotten to see the band once, at the late great Maxwell’s right here in Hoboken. They were promoting their fourth (and still most recent) album in the summer of 2011. It was a tremendous show. In March of last year, I learned that Eddie Argos had written a memoir. Not only that, but it would feature illustrations by the illustrious Katie Pope of the fantastic band the Just Joans. And she’s friends with my friend Susannah. It was kismet; I quickly supported Argos’s Indiegogo campaign to pre-order the book. Some time later, when a mysterious, thick envelope arrived from Germany, I had no idea what might be inside. Unsolicited Hasselhoff memorabilia? But apparently the book had been published in Berlin via the “Lo Fi Punk Rock Motherfucking Press” imprint. Hey, why not! And as an Indiegogo perk, it included a lovely color postcard featuring Ms. Pope’s art. Ooh, it was a nice fat book. Yet I was briefly put off when I noticed that the text was significantly larger than expected; did this really need to be a nearly 400-page volume? Soon I calmed down, remembering that: A) I’m not the spring chicken I once was, and big letters are a help, and B) I’m a slow reader so this would help my pace, while still appearing to those across from me on public transportation that I’m reading something with heft. Other nice touches: Eddie’s autograph, a stamped first-edition number (159, baby), and an introduction by the Pixies’ Frank Black, who produced Art Brut’s third album. That’s unassailable indie-rock credibility right there, ladies and gentlemen. Yes, Jack, but the contents of the book, how was the book??? OK, OK, ease up on your multiple question marks, I was just about to get to that. I Formed a Band is a pleasure to read. If you’re already an Art Brut fan, Eddie’s author voice will be very familiar to you: totally conversational, heart on his sleeve, very funny, and a bit snarky. We’ve been getting some autobiography all along in the songs. (Formed a band, they formed a band! His little brother just discovered rock and roll. Etc. Etc. I won’t get into the Rusted Guns of Milan but he certainly does.) The book serves to flesh it all out. Eddie Argos emerges as the everyperson who had genuinely lived the dream: Despite lack of formal (or, really, informal) training, he wanted to be in a band, so he persistently made it happen. And he played shows. And made records. And toured the world! He shares with us the successes and failures, hopes and frustrations, brushes with greatness and with jerkness. It seems like anyone who was in a band, or is still in a band, or wanted to be in a band but never actually was in band — all of you should read this book. If I have one gripe with I Formed a Band, I kept wishing I’d been allowed to proofread it. Many times, there’s no period at the end of a sentence, or various other English-major-enfuriating little errors. But really, it’s all in keeping with the “slap dash for no cash” lo-fi aesthetic of the whole undertaking. Even Katie Pope’s wonderful black-and-white interior illustrations have a really raw quality to them; you can truly feel the energy as Eddie drunkenly stumbles his way around the globe. While we eagerly await another Art Brut album, I Formed a Band is much more than a stop-gap measure. Modern memoir makes me want to rock out!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Villate

    I do love me some Eddie Argos. It is a great regret of my life that I never lived anywhere I could see Art Brut when they were touring the States. My regret is not so great as my sister's, though - she saw them several times in Portland, Oregon, but her nerve always failed her and she could never do more than stare creepily at Eddie as he flogged t-shirts and CDs at the merch table. One day I will see Eddie Argos perform in some capacity, and in my sister's honor I will go up to him and shake hi I do love me some Eddie Argos. It is a great regret of my life that I never lived anywhere I could see Art Brut when they were touring the States. My regret is not so great as my sister's, though - she saw them several times in Portland, Oregon, but her nerve always failed her and she could never do more than stare creepily at Eddie as he flogged t-shirts and CDs at the merch table. One day I will see Eddie Argos perform in some capacity, and in my sister's honor I will go up to him and shake his hand. Then I will truly rock out.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jon Chaisson

    Hooray! The goofball leader of the band Art Brut tells his story on how he in fact formed the band, and all the ridiculousness that's part and parcel of the music business. Hilarious band trolling, stressful record label implosion, fan (and producer) squee, Man Chats, scheduled booze consumption, and everything in between. Never a dull moment for a guy who's still a bit surprised his childhood dream came true. Hooray! The goofball leader of the band Art Brut tells his story on how he in fact formed the band, and all the ridiculousness that's part and parcel of the music business. Hilarious band trolling, stressful record label implosion, fan (and producer) squee, Man Chats, scheduled booze consumption, and everything in between. Never a dull moment for a guy who's still a bit surprised his childhood dream came true.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Joosep

    Art Bruti laulja memuaarid bändi tegemisest ja algusaastatest. Lõbusalt kirjutatud seigad enne Eddie tegemistest bändis. Alates hetkedest kuidas ta kartis, et bändi liikmed viskavad ta bändist välja, kui lõpuks kuulevad, mis häälega ta laulab, ning kuidas ta suutis ajakirjades teisi bände maha teha.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Michael Legge

    Shame he dies in the end.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Alan Fricker

    LFPRMF should perhaps proof read.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Adam Edwards

    Definitely worth reading if you're a fan of Art Brut (I bloody love Art Brut). Definitely worth reading if you're a fan of Art Brut (I bloody love Art Brut).

  14. 4 out of 5

    Carla Burnett

  15. 5 out of 5

    Mark

  16. 4 out of 5

    Andy

  17. 4 out of 5

    Stacey

  18. 4 out of 5

    Elisabeth

  19. 5 out of 5

    N. N. Santiago

  20. 4 out of 5

    Chris Limb

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jonathon

  22. 4 out of 5

    Katharina Haferflocke

  23. 4 out of 5

    Zachary Whittaker

  24. 5 out of 5

    Chris Rice

  25. 4 out of 5

    Paul Moloney

  26. 5 out of 5

    Chris

  27. 4 out of 5

    David Bull

  28. 5 out of 5

    Julie Ibach

  29. 5 out of 5

    Liam

  30. 5 out of 5

    Pauline

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