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The Crack Magazine


Souvenir by Michael Bracewell

When I heard that Michael Bracewell had written a new book it was almost like a time machine wrecked friend had suddenly reappeared and, boy, did he have a story to tell. But was this really the case, or had Michael been here all along and I’d merely turned the page on him as I’d figured his time had come and gone? The first thing to note, however, is that Souvenir isn’t St. Rachel part two/three/whatever, it’s a memoir. A memoir of the eighties and a much-lamented lost London. To which his hire of a time machine had paid off handsomely. Capturing the grim, the grime and sublime often encapsulated in an event, a sound, or even a couple of people, “Trojan and Leigh Bowery - exhibitionist clubbers like brick-layers with green faces or Indian deities by way of Boots 17 - will seem to have as much to do with crisps as loving the alien.” The sentence/observation of the year? Gotta be close. And as Souvenir Ziggy zags its way through various London happenings and events - and the pinpoint observations and memories build up - you suddenly realise you are in that time machine. Crashing into 2021 as the last sentence is read to “fall into a leaden slumber until bedtime”. Welcome back Michael Bracewell.

Publ. by White Rabbit Books - £14.99

Steven Long