Counterculture legend Mick Farren dies with his boots on
July 28, 2013 11:44 AM   Subscribe

Give The Anarchist A Cigarette: Counterculture legend Mick Farren dies with his boots on Mick Farren, rabble rouser, musician, and writer, collapsed last night on stage at the The Borderline, in London. He died soon after. Hmm, sorry, I seem to be crap at this. Here's some more links to the story: From Uncut: Mick Farren 1943 - 2013, From Vintage Vinyl News: Passings: Mick Farren of the Deviants (1943 - 2013), and from Ultimate Calssic Rock: Mick Farren Dies After Collapsing On Stage In London That last has a pretty good version of "Let's Loot The Super Market".
posted by evilDoug (19 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
A true badass.

He'll join Les Harvey and Dimebag Darrell in Rock & Roll Valhalla. RIP.
posted by jonmc at 11:57 AM on July 28, 2013 [1 favorite]

For those of you unfamiliar, I first stumbled onto his writings with The Texts of Festival a not entirely successful novel that to me was reminiscent of Zardoz.
I much ppreffered his later books: Their Master's War, The Armageddon Crazy, and Mars – The Red Planet (sorry, couldn't find a link).
posted by evilDoug at 11:58 AM on July 28, 2013

Man... There was a time I really loved a hand full of his books. Necrom, DNA Cowboys, The Long Orbit. At the time, at the place I was they where brilliant. Lost some of the luster over the years, but memorable and enjoyable.

posted by edgeways at 12:07 PM on July 28, 2013

Found a link for Mars-The Red Planet.
posted by evilDoug at 12:14 PM on July 28, 2013

Well, goddamn.

I loved Mick Farren's fiction.

The Texts of Festival felt a little bit like The Dying Earth was set in a Logan's Run cavern five miles under New Orleans where the planet had gravitationally locked to Walpurgisnacht. Then he switched it up with books like The Feelies or Their Master's War, which were your standard issue dystopias based on a handful of issues. He was getting wound up around The Armageddon Crazy. On the side we had The DNA Cowboys series, like a Western set on a Tattooine where the Empire just did not give a shit.

Next came Necrom, which is a wildly fun book that I can only describe as every X-Files style conspiracy theory thrown into a blender. It has UFOs and a demon named Yancey Slide. I don't know what else I can tell you about it. I only had one feeling through the entire book: whee!

Suddenly we get this this five year period of silence, after which he comes out with one of the more startling works of vampire fiction, In The Time of Feasting, this somber, somewhat grim book, and I couldn't figure out what happened. It wasn't joyless, precisely, so much as it felt like he said, "I'm going to skip the wacky hijinx for a while." It was followed by three others, where he began to wink and nudge again.

I always admired his ability to handle the casual synthesis of dozens of science fiction staples into something fresh, exciting, and enjoyable. A writer to emulate and a man who lived like he died. I believe it is time to fire up an album and scavenge my cabinets for something psychotropic in memoriam.
posted by adipocere at 12:15 PM on July 28, 2013

Here's a Deviants playlist on Spotify, and one for Mick Farren.
posted by evilDoug at 12:21 PM on July 28, 2013

posted by Smart Dalek at 12:45 PM on July 28, 2013 [1 favorite]

Wow, he was doorman at the UFO Club in 1967.
posted by thelonius at 1:10 PM on July 28, 2013

I had some of his music by way of a Stiff Records compilation. The music was powerful and fun.
Mick Farren/Deviants - Let's loot the supermarket again (77)
posted by dougzilla at 1:14 PM on July 28, 2013 [1 favorite]

Mick embodied rock and roll more than just about anyone. I didn't always dig what he was doing musically, but he was always interesting and everything was worth checking out. His blog, Doc 40, has been a favorite stop of mine for years. Following him has made my life richer, and I'm grateful for that.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 2:50 PM on July 28, 2013

He was also one of the best rock journalists of the 1970s. I read loads of his stuff in the NME of that era and loved it. I nearly bought this book a few days ago, and now I wish I had.
posted by Paul Slade at 3:20 PM on July 28, 2013 [1 favorite]

posted by The River Ivel at 3:37 PM on July 28, 2013

The Armageddon Crazy and Necrom were definitely interesting.

posted by Chrysostom at 4:12 PM on July 28, 2013

Mick and I wrote for the same weekly magazine back in the 1990s, and had a few drinks together over the years. He was a sweet, funny rebel who kept on doing what he wanted to do, even when it didn't make him famous (or rich). Now that's punk. RIP.
posted by turducken at 11:55 PM on July 28, 2013

Not too long ago I dug out the DNA Cowboys trilogy at a local library. Not what I'd call essential SF, or even essential Farren, but good fun nevertheless, and inspired in places.

I was a broke teenaged rock and roll fan in 1976 when he wrote The Titanic Sails At Dawn for the NME. It was trenchant, funny and it made sense. Within a year punk and new wave started happening and there's no way to prove that Farren's article caused it directly; but I'd like to think he and others like him helped fan the flames.

not only


but also

posted by El Brendano at 6:37 AM on July 29, 2013

posted by Minus215Cee at 12:56 PM on July 29, 2013

I'm mutual friends with someone who knew/worked with Mick and I was lucky enough to have dinner with him and our shared friends at a old Peruvian restaurant in Los Angeles back when he still lived in town. What a guy - a real-life anarchist-psychedelic Oliver Reed... Impossible to get him to talk about old rock-and-roll war stories, he lived totally in the Now but mainly liked talking about cats.

Fortunately his blog is still there. The secret word is transcendence.
posted by quartzcity at 4:24 AM on July 30, 2013 [1 favorite]

posted by hap_hazard at 1:36 PM on July 30, 2013


to the motherfuckin'

posted by snottydick at 11:24 AM on July 31, 2013

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