Tuesday, July 3, 2012


Here now is almost certainly the worst, most universally despised (by both band and fans) Pulp song. It’s to the band’s credit that it’s a mere b-side from the ‘80s, although it is still a mystery how it got released in the first place.

“Silence” is the only recording from the band’s oft-bootlegged Sudan Gerri demo tape to receive official release, on the “Master of the Universe” single. And it never was released again, on any Pulp reissues or compilations. Jarvis has admitted in interviews that he has forbidden it to be re-released; he’s as aware as anyone how terrible it is.

What’s so bad about this song? It’s a slow organ drone in which Jarvis moans tunelessly and humorlessly about a breakup. An out-of-tune hunting horn warbles in the background. The song is filled with morose, melodramatic self-pity, completely devoid of wit, nuance, bite, or anything else that characterizes Pulp at their best. “Silence” instead takes every element of Pulp’s gothy, arty period and executes them as incompetently as possible. It endures to this day as a camp artifact, the band’s very own Manos: The Hands of Fate.

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