Monday, November 30, 2009

Jobriath "Jobriath"

You know you are dealing with a lovingly packaged record when the sleeve spells the name of the artist in three different ways for no obvious reason. And so it is with this. Jobriath was this would-be pop star from some time in the 1970s. He was openly homosexual at a time when such things were not considered big and clever. His pop career failed to take off, with this album being the only product of his that ever saw the light of day. Morrissey and others subsequently championed him, but he was unable to make any kind of triumphant comeback, having died of an AIDS-related illness in the 1980s.

That is the back story, but is the record any good? Well, it is any good, packing a certain glam rock influenced punch. Jobriath's vocal style is perhaps something of an acquired taste, but one I have acquired. But for me there is still a problem, in that I already have the best track, the wonderful 'I'm A Man', (from that Queer Noises compilation of gay music). 'I'm A Man' towers over everything else on this record, a stomping strutting harpsichord driven piece of propaganda for the world of Greek Love that would have even Richard Littlejohn and Abu Hamza eyeing each other up. If you've never heard it, buy this record. Or buy the Queer Noises comp.

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