On their first trip to New York, having befriended a local tramp, The Wildhearts coughed up cash so that their new pal could enjoy a cocaine and hookers session on his birthday. Their generosity proved fatal, for it transpired that the gent in question had both an apartment and a girlfriend, who upon discovering her lover mid-coitus, burned down his building, killing him in the blaze. As a metaphor for The Wildhearts’ knack of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, this seems horribly apt.
It’s just one of many jaw-dropping stories here, in an autobiographical text relating highs (Top 10 hits, drug-enhanced misadventures) and lows (suicide attempts, depression, crack cocaine addiction) in an equally forthright, unsentimental fashion via analysis of (almost) every song Ginger has written and recorded. Songs & Words reads like the ultimate rock’n’roll survivor’s manual and makes The Dirt seem like a Janet and John book.