Short-answer questions

GhostofCain

Ancient Mariner
He did not! He used a word which wasn't even considered particularly offensive in 1982, but which has come to be frowned upon since.
It was not just using an offensive word if you ask me! His views on different races not being able to live together were as despicable then as they are now. :rolleyes:
 

Brigantium

Paladin of Voltron
Staff member
Re not hiring non British people.....according to speculation, Steve ruled out a Scot too (Doogie White) at least partly for his being Scottish, (although maybe also because White's vocal style is too much like Bruce's and he wanted a change). I interpret that personally as Steve seeing being English as part of the band's identity, rather than simply being down to dislike of foreigners.

As for Age of Innocence, that perfectly sums up the tabloid culture of the time, full of paranoia about paedophiles, how everything's gone to pot, ranting about how everything was so sweet and innocent in the olden days. And, ironically, complaining simultaneously about the extent of media hype and negativity.

Steve's comments about London's black population in the 80s, however, does raise a lot of questions. That wasn't just a bit of language that's gone out of fashion, even if it was a fairly openly expressed view at the time. It smacks of total and utter disdain.
 

Black Abyss Babe

Quantum weather butterfly
It was not just using an offensive word if you ask me! His views on different races not being able to live together were as despicable then as they are now. :rolleyes:
Saying you don't think something can happen is not the same as saying you don't want it to happen. You need to look at the context. When people come over in dribs and drabs they tend to integrate quite well, because there's no way they can present themselves except as individuals. What we're talking about here is whole swathes of immigrants coming over and setting up in one place and just establishing their own communities, and generally being insular - not really wanting or trying to integrate (probably because they didn't really want to be here at all). Also there was a lot of institutionalised racism, notably in the police, the Brixton riots had just happened - the average joe in the street could be forgiven for thinking it was all a bit hopeless. It reminds me of something Einstein once wrote: "Nationalities do not want to be fused- they want to go each its own way. A state of peace can be brought about only if they mutually tolerate and respect one another." Steve has observed this not happening and it seems to make him sad rather than anything else. Even Bruce, who is much more eloquent, seems to find the whole situation rather hopeless.

Also remember that the interviewer was pretty antagonistic. Look at the questions he was asking: "Have either of you any racist tendancies?" "Would you say that you're a racist?" "Do you not have respect for other cultures?" (I think that this specific interview must have been culled for the script of "This Is Spinal Tap" a couple of years later.) It seems like a fairly calculated attempt to trip them up. What Steve seems to be trying to say in response, however clumsily, is that there's good and bad in all groups of people and that if you don't get on with someone who happens to be a different colour, it's entirely possible that their being a different colour is coincidental. But he's clearly on his back foot and not expressing himself at all well.
Steve's comments about London's black population in the 80s, however, does raise a lot of questions. That wasn't just a bit of language that's gone out of fashion, even if it was a fairly openly expressed view at the time. It smacks of total and utter disdain.
I don't think it does. There's nothing really racist in what Steve actually says (although anyone actually looking to find that would have no trouble construing it that way), the argument seems to have arisen mainly over his use of the word "darkies", which hadn't even really started to be considered offensive in 1982. It's not about the language going out of fashion, it's simply that the actual word has subsequently got "stronger" with usage and connotations. (It can happen the other way too, for example when Shakespeare describes his characters as "saucy" he actually means "insolent", which can sometimes come as a surprise to people familiar with the current usage.) Also, just a thought but it's entirely possible that someone in Steve's position (as it was in 1982) could be familiar with local usage of some words without being aware that people from "further afield" might interpret those words somewhat differently (and I speak from personal experience here ...)

Anyway, words are not absolute: context is everything :)
 

GhostofCain

Ancient Mariner
Steve's comments about London's black population in the 80s, however, does raise a lot of questions. That wasn't just a bit of language that's gone out of fashion, even if it was a fairly openly expressed view at the time. It smacks of total and utter disdain.
Exactly. Regardless of context, the use of some words being more acceptable at the time, and the interviewer being definitely confrontational, Steve managed to present himself as an uneducated racist chap, whilst Bruce came across as an articulate educated person instead.

Anyway, back to topic, as the short answer question has not got a short one this time! :lol:
 

Perun

Dominus et deus
Staff member
And another thing: how come every other nation is allowed to celebrate all that's great and wonderful about being whatever nation they are, but as soon as the Brits even mention it, it automatically becomes racism? Come on, one rule for everyone!
I know a lot of people who would say that about Germany.
 

chaosapiant

Ancient Marinade
Fixed it for you. :lol:

Joking aside, there is nothing wrong with being proud about a nation as long as that does not involve any supremacist nativist views.
This. You can love your country and heritage and still appreciate and enjoy other cultures and countries, without putting them down or believing you’re inherently better than others based on skin color or the happenstance of your birth place.
 

The_7th_one

Ancient Mariner
I'm reading the Somewhere in Time book by Stjepan Juras and he wrote this:
According to Steve 'Loopy' Newhouse many of the album songs were finished way before in their author’s minds but Dave Murray revealed they had entered the studio with six songs finished, mostly thanks to Steve and Adrian. On the other hand it was Bruce who counted nine songs approaching the production after the selection process, one of the songs being Steve's instrumental piece. Also, as we said before, none of the songs were more than four to five minutes long. If we try comparing the statements of all the band members from various interviews from that time, we realize a couple of interesting things. Bruce was doing his songs with the help of Adrian Smith, but Adrian was a huge surprise for everyone by bringing his own, mostly finished work to the table - lyrics included.
This came as a surprise to Bruce who expected collaboration, not Smith finishing the songs all by himself. Related to this, Bruce possibly gave a very honest remark to the French Hard Rock magazine in May 1986: „There's been innovation! When we got together in Jersey, we were all slumped! Absolutely everyone had written songs, and I don't mean only the music, but the lyrics too. Let's see... I had at least nine songs, so had Adrian, but Steve was the worst: he had written so many songs that he could have filled up the album by himself!“


What Bruce's song was not included and the instrumental one by Steve?
 

srfc

Ancient Mariner
I'm reading the Somewhere in Time book by Stjepan Juras and he wrote this:
According to Steve 'Loopy' Newhouse many of the album songs were finished way before in their author’s minds but Dave Murray revealed they had entered the studio with six songs finished, mostly thanks to Steve and Adrian. On the other hand it was Bruce who counted nine songs approaching the production after the selection process, one of the songs being Steve's instrumental piece. Also, as we said before, none of the songs were more than four to five minutes long. If we try comparing the statements of all the band members from various interviews from that time, we realize a couple of interesting things. Bruce was doing his songs with the help of Adrian Smith, but Adrian was a huge surprise for everyone by bringing his own, mostly finished work to the table - lyrics included.
This came as a surprise to Bruce who expected collaboration, not Smith finishing the songs all by himself. Related to this, Bruce possibly gave a very honest remark to the French Hard Rock magazine in May 1986: „There's been innovation! When we got together in Jersey, we were all slumped! Absolutely everyone had written songs, and I don't mean only the music, but the lyrics too. Let's see... I had at least nine songs, so had Adrian, but Steve was the worst: he had written so many songs that he could have filled up the album by himself!“


What Bruce's song was not included and the instrumental one by Steve?
The instrumental became Alexander the Great, the lyrics seem to have been added at a very late stage.
 

Lampwick 43

Barstool Warrior
Who wrote the lyrics to Virus? I'm assuming it was Blaze, since he has a credit on the song, but everyone in the band at the time (sans Nicko) has a writing credit on that song, so I wasn't entirely sure.
 

Luisma

Years Wasted
Who wrote the lyrics to Virus? I'm assuming it was Blaze, since he has a credit on the song, but everyone in the band at the time (sans Nicko) has a writing credit on that song, so I wasn't entirely sure.
Virus is the the only time that all members of the band (even Nicko although he doesn't get a writing credit) sat together to write a song. The lyrics alre mostly from Steve who got was specially "hurted" and "disapointed" with the media which is the whole point of the song. The other members formed the musical idea and Blaze just gave a small input 'cause after all, he was one of the central target of the media also
 

harrisdevot

Priest of the Holy Wristband
The instrumental became Alexander the Great, the lyrics seem to have been added at a very late stage.
Are you sure about this ? I mean, the translations in the French magazines at the time used to be quite inaccurate at times, and I've always wondered if Bruce had talked about an instrumental bit (i.e. the central part of Alexander) and not about an instrumental song. I remember being upset not to find any instrumental song on the album.
 

srfc

Ancient Mariner
Are you sure about this ? I mean, the translations in the French magazines at the time used to be quite inaccurate at times, and I've always wondered if Bruce had talked about an instrumental bit (i.e. the central part of Alexander) and not about an instrumental song. I remember being upset not to find any instrumental song on the album.
No I'm not certain, in fact I didn't even know about the alleged "instrumental" until reading about it on here quite recently.

Although, I have a vague memory of there being more than one source. Also I possibly could have read something in Luisma's book.
 
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