Published in New Musical Express
THE SCARS epitomise the post-punk new seriousness that has radically
re-activated pop music, destroying the dichotomy between intelligence
and emotion and confronting a whole range of different fears and desires.
New pop that treats the transient thrill seriously.
New pop, the matter-realism that is today's heroic retaliation, has imagination and conviction. It screams to the outer limits, dreams to the inner limits, its themes are maudlin and magnificent and the effect is both ephemeral and complicated.
'Author! Author!' is such a spectacle. it hasn't the songs of 'Kilimanjaro' or 'The Affectionate Punch', the panic of 'Real Life', the physicality of 'The Scream, the unknown pleasures of 'Unknown Pleasures', but 'Author! Author!' isn't out of place in such company.
It's taken two years for The Scars to organise this LP and it's a wonder
they don't sound exhausted - they've been messed around and missed out
so much since they switched from Fast to Pre. It must've been a hell of
At their most impressive - 'Leave Me in the Autumn'. 'Obsessions', 'All
About You' - The Scars decorate/deprecate melancholy mood music with trickling
pop impudence. A listener can never settle, never escape the underlying
LPs are not the place for pop music, yet The Scars have created something worth consuming and contemplating. It's only one of two long players released this year on pop labels that I'd seriously suggest you pay up and pay attention to. Ten songs of first class fashion and post-adolescent passion.
The Scars will be stars: they're the new craze. The stage is theirs.
Published in Sounds
ROCK'N'ROLL'S intuitive creative capabilities, its potential as 'pop art' being everywhere and just needing a spark to set it broadly alight, a notion given sustenance by the current Scotland! The Scene! The Bands! schtick, is further fuelled by the truly prodicious arrival of 'Author! Author!.
The Scars have been given a second life and they take it with a vengeance. 'Author! Author!' is enought to get Postcard worried! It is a truly luscious album, clearly motivated not only by the Postcardian new-pop-bypassing, but also the underlying influences to the Scars of such removes as JD's 'Atmosphere' and The Fall (big fans)'s 'Shout Your Heart Out.'
'A!A!' is an album teeming with a sense of refound faih in the pop ethic - Scars go to extreme lengths to prove it! There are four tracks on here that end, truly, with grandiose flourishes of Paul Research's guitar, depicting dry ice, kicking up of sand, in short completely over the top dramatisation. But they fit the exaggerated sense of new romanticism perfectly.
Beauty? It comes in moments, perhaps especially on the last two tracks. First is 'Your Attention Please!'. A nuclear holocaust warning and not too corny with it, followed by a ticking clock, followed by a voice saying in three minutes the world will end (three minutes! a pop sing's life!) followed marvellously by a classic of a love/pop song, 'All About You' - the epic contrast, the drama, so simple and reserved (for once) is nonetheless strikingly effective. I wish more people would make albums like this.