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Creem – America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine, Reviewed Issue By Issue – April 1984 (Volume 15, Number 11)

Duran Duran, who were still primarily considered an act for teenage girls, had a casual chic appearance on the cover of the Apirl 1984 issue of Creem. Angus Young of AC/DC, who had less of a reputation for being a heartthrob, also received a cover inset pic. Chris Saleswizc interviewed an “extraordinarily defensive” Simon LeBon. LeBon once again disavowed the band’s placement in the New Romantics movement and warned about the evils of cocaine (“very bad for singers’ throats”). Nick Rhodes chimed in to slag the competition, “Let’s face it, Culture Club’s ‘Karma Chameleon’ sounds very much like ‘Take Me Home, Country Roads,” which was a massive hit that was very acceptable to the general public.” Simon sounded like he was trying a bit too hard to convey he was a serious artist in this piece. On the other hand, I’ve never made tremendously successful pop music that was universally panned by critics on two continents.  

In “Rock ‘n’ Roll News,” it was reported that the Police were taking an 18-month hiatus. Except for re-recording “Don’t Stand So Close to Me” in 1986, this break was effectively the last gasp of the band in the ‘80s. Sting’s multi-platinum 1985 solo album “The Dream of the Blue Turtles” probably didn’t make him want to run back into a tense band environment. The Police did reunite for a tour in 2007 and 2008, but never released another album after 1983’s “Synchronicity.”  

The deaths of Alexis Korner and Dennis Wilson were reported. 

Pete Townshend, a man with a broken crystal ball, announced that the Who would not be releasing any more albums. Even more laugh inducing, he said, “I will not perform anywhere in the world with the Who.” Perhaps he forgot to add, “Unless the money is really good.” 

In Billy Altman’s short-lived sports oriented “Bench Press” column, he noted his preference for Championship Wrestling from Florida over New York’s WWF and their “burrhead of a champion” (Bob Backlund). We never received a follow-up report on Hulk-a-Mania. 


“Blonde with Bottle: Debbie Harry,” by Cynthia Rose 

“Wanted: New Image (Wholesome Popsters Need Not Apply),” an article on Nick Heyward by Karen Schlosberg 

“Duran Duran Am What They Yam: And That’s the Snakes…,” by Chris Salewicz 

“The Big Test on Big Country,” by Laura Fissinger 

“AC/DC And Nothing Can Harm Them!,” by John Kordosh 

“Revolution American Style: Billy Idol Battles the Bland,” by Toby Goldstein 

“Up in Arms: Non-Pig Biggies Flip Their Wiggies,” by Tony Paris 

Debbie Harry, with hair whiter than the audience at a Morgan Wallen concert, talked about acting and Blondie and Marilyn Monroe and Creem magazine in a pretty lengthy interview with Cynthia Rose. A solid piece. 

Laura Fissinger interviewed Big Country, noting that Stuart Adamson “did a short but potent sulk” during the discussion. Adamson, sadly, never conquered his temperament or demons, dying of suicide in 2021. The author turned the interview into a multiple-choice quiz and the tone is much lighter than I’ve made it sound.  

Angus Young sounded like a well-meaning bloke in his interview with John Kordosh. Young’s goals for the future, “Just take it further. Take it as far as you can. There’s new things every day. New, different rhythms to work with – different approaches, different styles.” I’m kind of surprised they never worked with the Pet Shop Boys after reading this.  

Billy Idol chatted about Generation X, being managed by former Kiss mastermind Bill Aucoin, and his “punk” attitude towards detractors in his interview with Toby Goldstein.  

In 1983, a series of benefit concerts for Ronnie Lane who performed by the Who’s Who of British Rock Stars. Lane suffered from Multiple Sclerosis and the gigs on his behalf brought out Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page, Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood, Bill Wyman, and Charlie Watts among others. Participant Joe Cocker was impressed that Lane had retained his sense of humor. Regarding the shows, Cocker stated, “I think there’s some very good music coming out of it. If you were up there on that stage and could feel all the energy, especially ‘With A Little Help’ with four drummers, I never experienced anything like that. It’s like a train going down the track.” 

Quotable Quotes:   

Debbie Harry, “Some of the early Blondie fans were really into that shared countercultural humor though. Creem magazine, for instance, they understood the humor. To a certain extent, anyway – except that they were really serious about seeming like real jerk-off guys, you know (Debbie bursts out giggling) Like, ‘I-wanna-fuck-everything-that-walks macho.’” 

Harry, “The very best thing about rock is its intuitive nature. To me, it’s very tribal and it goes to the deepest instincts.” 

Nick Heyward, “I wish I did have an image, really, so I could hide behind it.” 

Simon LeBon, “We just spend our lives on coaches and planes, traveling around from job to job.” 

John Kordosh on AC/DC, “They’re immense. They’re gigantic. They’re Jabba the Hut on the Elvis Diet.” 

Angus Young, “We want to rock you to death. But we do go out there to look pretty.” 

RJ Smith, “Quite possibly the best band in the land today, the Minutemen’s music is what should be put out across the Emergency Broadcast Network instead of those 60 seconds of aggravating noise.” 

Summary: There’s nothing wrong with this issue, but this does feel like an era when Creem is coving acts more out of a sense of obligation versus admiration. 

Grade: B+ 

Latest price on eBay: $12.00 to “Buy It Now.” 

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