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Paranoid: Black Days with Sabbath & Other Horror Stories - The Unexpurgated Edition

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PARANOID - THE UNEXPURGATED EDITION with a new introduction by the author, Mick Wall. ‘In his amoral, happy-go-lucky search for the next drink or expenses-paid trip, Wall fearlessly exposes much of the mediocrity and sheer hollowness that lies just beneath the surface glamour of life on the pop media-celebrity circuit… Dark, twisted and frequently hilarious.’ THE TIMES ‘T PARANOID - THE UNEXPURGATED EDITION with a new introduction by the author, Mick Wall. ‘In his amoral, happy-go-lucky search for the next drink or expenses-paid trip, Wall fearlessly exposes much of the mediocrity and sheer hollowness that lies just beneath the surface glamour of life on the pop media-celebrity circuit… Dark, twisted and frequently hilarious.’ THE TIMES ‘This is the tale of a writer’s travels in nihilism… Up one minute, down the next, Wall teeters on self-destruct.’ MOJO ‘A repulsively compelling account of life on the road and other rock’n'roll stories, the heroin scenes make Irvine Welsh look like the Teletubbies.’ THE GUARDIAN ‘Mick Wall will never work in the music industry again. Not if the men in the corridors of power learn about his utter contempt for [them].’ UNCUT Like all the greatest rock books ever written, this is not a book about rock music; it is a book about rock life. A hard-hitting, iconoclastic tour de force, written with affection, rudeness and wincing honesty, PARANOID proves that music can be an arena for moral choices - that it can quite literally change your life. Mick Wall was a teenage rock fan who, leaving school with no qualifications, somehow found himself working with Black Sabbath. They would help seal his fate forever. As he writes, 'It was never about what happened on stage, it was about what happened afterwards, when the crowd had gone and the bands could really start to play.' Written in prose that pulsates with rock's own rhythms, and featuring a remarkable cast of characters - including Sabbath and their notorious singer Ozzy Osbourne, Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page, Kate Bush David Bowie, Guns & Roses, Stevie Nicks and many, many others - PARANOID is not just the story of one man, or even one band, but a remarkably frank inside look at the rock industry in all its tawdry, self-deluding glory. ‘Far too slowly the truth dawned’, writes Wall. ‘For much of my life, I had been a desperate, hand to mouth junkie in a corrupt, multi-billion dollar industry that didn't give a fuck’. This brand new eBook edition is the first time PARANOID has been published online. It comes with a brand new introduction from the author, outlining for the first time what the book was really all about, and with the manuscript in its original unexpurgated form.


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PARANOID - THE UNEXPURGATED EDITION with a new introduction by the author, Mick Wall. ‘In his amoral, happy-go-lucky search for the next drink or expenses-paid trip, Wall fearlessly exposes much of the mediocrity and sheer hollowness that lies just beneath the surface glamour of life on the pop media-celebrity circuit… Dark, twisted and frequently hilarious.’ THE TIMES ‘T PARANOID - THE UNEXPURGATED EDITION with a new introduction by the author, Mick Wall. ‘In his amoral, happy-go-lucky search for the next drink or expenses-paid trip, Wall fearlessly exposes much of the mediocrity and sheer hollowness that lies just beneath the surface glamour of life on the pop media-celebrity circuit… Dark, twisted and frequently hilarious.’ THE TIMES ‘This is the tale of a writer’s travels in nihilism… Up one minute, down the next, Wall teeters on self-destruct.’ MOJO ‘A repulsively compelling account of life on the road and other rock’n'roll stories, the heroin scenes make Irvine Welsh look like the Teletubbies.’ THE GUARDIAN ‘Mick Wall will never work in the music industry again. Not if the men in the corridors of power learn about his utter contempt for [them].’ UNCUT Like all the greatest rock books ever written, this is not a book about rock music; it is a book about rock life. A hard-hitting, iconoclastic tour de force, written with affection, rudeness and wincing honesty, PARANOID proves that music can be an arena for moral choices - that it can quite literally change your life. Mick Wall was a teenage rock fan who, leaving school with no qualifications, somehow found himself working with Black Sabbath. They would help seal his fate forever. As he writes, 'It was never about what happened on stage, it was about what happened afterwards, when the crowd had gone and the bands could really start to play.' Written in prose that pulsates with rock's own rhythms, and featuring a remarkable cast of characters - including Sabbath and their notorious singer Ozzy Osbourne, Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page, Kate Bush David Bowie, Guns & Roses, Stevie Nicks and many, many others - PARANOID is not just the story of one man, or even one band, but a remarkably frank inside look at the rock industry in all its tawdry, self-deluding glory. ‘Far too slowly the truth dawned’, writes Wall. ‘For much of my life, I had been a desperate, hand to mouth junkie in a corrupt, multi-billion dollar industry that didn't give a fuck’. This brand new eBook edition is the first time PARANOID has been published online. It comes with a brand new introduction from the author, outlining for the first time what the book was really all about, and with the manuscript in its original unexpurgated form.

30 review for Paranoid: Black Days with Sabbath & Other Horror Stories - The Unexpurgated Edition

  1. 4 out of 5

    Swjohnson

    Veteran UK rock journalist Mick Wall is a better writer and critic than most of his peers. Focusing on unfashionable genres such as hard rock and metal, his work has an incisive intelligence unburdened by the high-minded pretensions that often hobble music writing. “Paranoid” is a memoir and industry expose that focuses dually on his heroin habit and experiences with artists such as Black Sabbath, Thin Lizzy, Axl Rose and others; Wall’s struggles with addiction often poetically mirror those of h Veteran UK rock journalist Mick Wall is a better writer and critic than most of his peers. Focusing on unfashionable genres such as hard rock and metal, his work has an incisive intelligence unburdened by the high-minded pretensions that often hobble music writing. “Paranoid” is a memoir and industry expose that focuses dually on his heroin habit and experiences with artists such as Black Sabbath, Thin Lizzy, Axl Rose and others; Wall’s struggles with addiction often poetically mirror those of his musical subjects, some of whom are similarly adrift chemically and professionally. A cover blurb from the Guardian suggests that “Paranoid” “make(s) Irvine Welsh look like the Teletubbies,” but the reality is less sensational; this is an intelligent and introspective memoir whose blunt insights only make it the more unsettling.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Alan

    Hmmm, What to say. This was a terribly misnamed book. You would expect to read lots of stories about Black Sabbath and other bands maybe. What you get is a miserable, junky music journalist who seems to hate the music business and most of the people in it, Including himself. It's a book of non stop moaning from somebody too stupid to realise how lucky he was and too weak to live it without a needle in his arm, joint in his mouth or drink in his hand. It's really hard to warm to Mick Wall. He seems Hmmm, What to say. This was a terribly misnamed book. You would expect to read lots of stories about Black Sabbath and other bands maybe. What you get is a miserable, junky music journalist who seems to hate the music business and most of the people in it, Including himself. It's a book of non stop moaning from somebody too stupid to realise how lucky he was and too weak to live it without a needle in his arm, joint in his mouth or drink in his hand. It's really hard to warm to Mick Wall. He seems to hate the business and those in it, because they are shallow tossers. Funny enough reading this book all you can think is, what a shallow tosser Mick Wall is. Should have renamed the book. A Miserable Junky Journalist Remembers Why He Hates The Music Business. Apathy for the Devil: A 1970s Memoir by Nick Kent is a far better read.

  3. 5 out of 5

    R7835

    Click-bait incarnate, from the title to the content. There are snippets of content that brings it up from a 1 star but these are few and far between. Although the book is mostly linear, it could be hard at times to know what period Mick Wall was writing about, which was fairly important for the context of what was being written about the bands. Not knowing anything about Wall before reading this book, I was disappointed to discover that he wouldn't have even been in his teens when Sabbath were in Click-bait incarnate, from the title to the content. There are snippets of content that brings it up from a 1 star but these are few and far between. Although the book is mostly linear, it could be hard at times to know what period Mick Wall was writing about, which was fairly important for the context of what was being written about the bands. Not knowing anything about Wall before reading this book, I was disappointed to discover that he wouldn't have even been in his teens when Sabbath were in their heyday, and so the best stories we could hope for were from when Ozzy had left (or was about to leave). It was also irritating that the title suggests horror stories about Black Sabbath, but the best Mick could muster was vague suggestions that Bill Ward was a nut-job, without any real horror being told. From the 'auto-biographical' side of things, I quite detest the man. I can't decide whether he is proud or ashamed of how he has managed to coast through life, writing half-arsed interviews when either intoxicated, or from a 'review template' where he just changes the names, songs etc. If he thinks the music industry is crap because it's full of shallow tossers, I beg him not to look in the mirror...

  4. 5 out of 5

    Alistaire King

    This is not about Sabbath But is about Mick Wall. It might help if you are a rock music but not a necessity. I know Mick Wall from the years he wrote for Kerrang magazine. I enjoyed reading his articles and reviews little thinking that the author was such a cynical sod. This book is really about Mick and his addictions. The stars are really a bit of a sideshow. I was tempted to give up after chapter after chapter of Mick looking for his next fix. It is the last two chapters that save it. In these This is not about Sabbath But is about Mick Wall. It might help if you are a rock music but not a necessity. I know Mick Wall from the years he wrote for Kerrang magazine. I enjoyed reading his articles and reviews little thinking that the author was such a cynical sod. This book is really about Mick and his addictions. The stars are really a bit of a sideshow. I was tempted to give up after chapter after chapter of Mick looking for his next fix. It is the last two chapters that save it. In these chapters we meet Ozzy and get a glimpse of the man behind the myth. His meeting with David Bowie is worth ploughing through the rest of the book alone. When you read about Mick and Stevie Nicks you might understand why i thought Mick you blocky so and so. Stick with it and it does pay off.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Aled Owen-Thomas

    I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that the publishers made him go with the title. It's one of the better Rock biographies out there because it's so wonderfully cynical. Wall presents himself as a jaded, misanthropic old hack and you really believe it until the further you get into the book it starts to dawn on you that it's just his style of writing and that's when you really start to enjoy it. By the end you're laughing at him complaining about the hopelessness of life and the ut I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that the publishers made him go with the title. It's one of the better Rock biographies out there because it's so wonderfully cynical. Wall presents himself as a jaded, misanthropic old hack and you really believe it until the further you get into the book it starts to dawn on you that it's just his style of writing and that's when you really start to enjoy it. By the end you're laughing at him complaining about the hopelessness of life and the utter pointlessness of Rock 'n' Roll.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Tim

    Half a book about a smack head journalist followed by some tepid tales of rock apathy. The Axel Rose and Ozzy stories are a bit more interesting, but the book is way too dry.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Gavin Smith

    While there are entertaining sections in this book, as a whole it isn't very satisfying. In the drug sections of the book, Wall seems to reach for a style somewhere between the cool detachment of Kerouac and the manic energy of Hunter S. Thompson. He openly admits to his admiration of Lester Bangs as the pinnacle of rock music writing. Unfortunately, the voice I was most reminded of was David Brent. Like a lot of this kind of writing, Wall would like to have it both ways, condemning rock stars f While there are entertaining sections in this book, as a whole it isn't very satisfying. In the drug sections of the book, Wall seems to reach for a style somewhere between the cool detachment of Kerouac and the manic energy of Hunter S. Thompson. He openly admits to his admiration of Lester Bangs as the pinnacle of rock music writing. Unfortunately, the voice I was most reminded of was David Brent. Like a lot of this kind of writing, Wall would like to have it both ways, condemning rock stars for their shallow lives while finding pathos in his own heroin addiction and mental frailty. It's an extremely difficult tightrope to walk and I don't think Wall pulls it off. He switches between talking about his disdain for his journalism career and television work to describing a majestic visit with Stevie Nicks. He talks about the ridiculousness of the macho posturing of Axl Rose and then boasts, 'I knew I could probably take (him) out with one punch'; seemingly without irony. I enjoyed the sections featuring Ozzy Osbourne, where you can feel real affection. I also found his story of recovering from heroin addiction interesting. In these instances, I felt I was getting a glimpse into a real person rather than swagger and show. Overall though, reading this book made me feel a little like I'd been cornered by the pub bore and I was half-listening because I didn't have anything better to do.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Kenny

    Just about ok. He can't quite decide whether it really wants to be an autobiography or tell all about the bands he interviews, and ends up being neither. There are some parts that hint at what more could have been - when he talks about trying to get clean or when in his early 20s he bounced back to his parents to wash dishes, apparently deliberately. But after that he retreats into his shell a lot - in outlining his feud with Axl Rose he gives some of the (many, many) reasons Axl is a twat, then Just about ok. He can't quite decide whether it really wants to be an autobiography or tell all about the bands he interviews, and ends up being neither. There are some parts that hint at what more could have been - when he talks about trying to get clean or when in his early 20s he bounced back to his parents to wash dishes, apparently deliberately. But after that he retreats into his shell a lot - in outlining his feud with Axl Rose he gives some of the (many, many) reasons Axl is a twat, then just adds something like "but I could be a real ego too" - this happens several times without really explaining why. I also found his consistent dismissals of journalists and himself (usually, but not always, there were a couple of pieces said apparently straight faced) a bit irritating, yes you put minimal effort in, you blagged it, the publisher didn't care, so you made more money with less effort, now go away... The encounters with bands are patchy - the early ones seem to have kept him at a distance, and it's only really Ozzy Osbourne that he seems to have gotten behind the exterior. The Ozzy parts are enjoyable, with some good explanation. The Stevie Nicks one was weird to irritating (both her and his description and styles). This should have been a lot better than it was

  9. 4 out of 5

    Frank

    If you're a Sabbath fan, don't bother. The actual anecdotes which relate to the band are minimal. The rest of the book is effectively Wall's autobiography, and as such is a tale of his spiralling descent into heroin addiction, drinking and general drug use. On top of this, it's the story of Wall's rise to "fame" as a rock journo. I grew up reading his stuff in Sounds and Kerrang. Reading this book, I discover that not only did he put almost zero effort into his writing (he openly admits plagiari If you're a Sabbath fan, don't bother. The actual anecdotes which relate to the band are minimal. The rest of the book is effectively Wall's autobiography, and as such is a tale of his spiralling descent into heroin addiction, drinking and general drug use. On top of this, it's the story of Wall's rise to "fame" as a rock journo. I grew up reading his stuff in Sounds and Kerrang. Reading this book, I discover that not only did he put almost zero effort into his writing (he openly admits plagiarism) but really didn't care for the music, either. He manages to insult most of the bands he wrote about, and effectively all of the fans. Personally, I could have lived without reading the sad tales of his sex life, too. The sad thing is, he's a very good writer when the focus of his work is someone else.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Yolanda Davis

    This was a bit of a disappointment to be honest. It starts when, Mick Wall, the author, is a young music journalist, and he tells us about his life at that time.There's lot's of talk about drugs and how, when and with whom he took them, and then it seems to jump forward in time. There is more talk about him than there is about Black Sabbath; then there are small bit's abpout Ozzy Osbourne, Guns n Roses & Stevie Nicks from Fleetwood Mac.I read an autobiography by Sharon Osbourne a long time ago, This was a bit of a disappointment to be honest. It starts when, Mick Wall, the author, is a young music journalist, and he tells us about his life at that time.There's lot's of talk about drugs and how, when and with whom he took them, and then it seems to jump forward in time. There is more talk about him than there is about Black Sabbath; then there are small bit's abpout Ozzy Osbourne, Guns n Roses & Stevie Nicks from Fleetwood Mac.I read an autobiography by Sharon Osbourne a long time ago, and the stories she told about Sabbath, Ozzy & the rock scene back then was brilliant in comparison. I thought I would learn more about the bands antics, but it didn't tell me anything I didn't already know.

  11. 4 out of 5

    David

    Report this under the trade descriptions act. Packaged as being full of rock star anecdotes, these are few and far between. It's actually the drug addiction descent of an unlikeable writer. Even the Axl Rose get in the ring feud is not worth your attention. You will need a 3 hour shower after reading this. Avoid avoid avoid. Report this under the trade descriptions act. Packaged as being full of rock star anecdotes, these are few and far between. It's actually the drug addiction descent of an unlikeable writer. Even the Axl Rose get in the ring feud is not worth your attention. You will need a 3 hour shower after reading this. Avoid avoid avoid.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jenika Ioffreda

    1.5 stars A few things were quite funny and pleasant to read (Mandy comments about the Royal wedding, for example, made me laugh aloud) but overall I couldn't connect with the main character, his story and thoughts. I skipped a few parts and went straight for the ending. 1.5 stars A few things were quite funny and pleasant to read (Mandy comments about the Royal wedding, for example, made me laugh aloud) but overall I couldn't connect with the main character, his story and thoughts. I skipped a few parts and went straight for the ending.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Chris Pratt

    This is an amazing story of the best of the worst in rock N roll excess from a man that was in the thick of the sex drugs and rock and roll lifestyle.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Tola O

    Extremely captivating but bleak in places. Great stories centred around the author's entertaining encounters with rock legends. Not for the faint-hearted. Extremely captivating but bleak in places. Great stories centred around the author's entertaining encounters with rock legends. Not for the faint-hearted.

  15. 5 out of 5

    M Ellis

  16. 4 out of 5

    Hector

  17. 4 out of 5

    Anne Stagg

  18. 5 out of 5

    Norman Oxlade

  19. 5 out of 5

    Helen D

  20. 5 out of 5

    Please Shoot Me

  21. 5 out of 5

    Zoe Davies

  22. 5 out of 5

    Denis Lockhart

  23. 5 out of 5

    Steven

  24. 5 out of 5

    Graham Lindsay

  25. 4 out of 5

    Dj

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mantas Nocius

  27. 4 out of 5

    Charlie

  28. 5 out of 5

    Cecilia Dunbar Hernandez

  29. 5 out of 5

    Matt Mereu

  30. 4 out of 5

    Iain

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