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Thursday, 2 October 2008

Never Going To Give Him Up

One either finds capitalism and the production of pop music always bad, or sometimes shot through with moments of redemption - second time as a farce, to put it in Marxist terms. Farce meets the postmodern-sublime, then, in the news today that virtual 80s pop icon, Rick Astley, has been nominated for the award of Best Act Ever at the pending MTV Europe Awards. Eyewear was always partial to the pint-sized charmer with the impeccable grooming and hair, and the killer pipes. There would be something delicious in his winning. As other acts pummeled away at trying to become increasingly huge, Astley retired, to a modest new life, far from the manipulation of the media. His new fame relies entirely on a crowd of strangers, who invented an Internet phenomenon called rickrolling, boosting him into an unlikely hero for a new generation otherwise oblivious to his very existence. It is as if he was summoned from thin air. This genuinely artificial re-meteoric rise is truly unique, not least in its gentle sense of whimsy. What is more deserving of an award in a brutal industry than an invisible hand, and terrific vocals?
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