Julian Cope announces ‘Compendium’ book inc very ltd edition…

Faber Publishing has just confirmed they are to publish a leather clad (very) limited edition of Julian Cope’sCompendium‘, – the limited edition will be released a full five months before the standard edition is available.

Just 150 box sets will be produced, costing an eye-watering £200 a set. These will contain a leather bound copy of ‘Compendium’ which will be both signed and individually numbered, together with two CD compilations to accompany your reading, plus a ticket to an ”Ëœevent’ with Cope (open to only those with the box set) to be held at London’s Rough Trade East on 21 June ”“ quite what the ”Ëœevent’ will involve is yet to be disclosed.

‘Compendium’ is a collection of Cope’s writing on music, culture and politics, detailing an alternative history of the last 60 years of popular music.

The limited edition version will be released on 7 June, and regular copies will be released on 7 November.

So how do you get your hands on one of these rather special editions? – Ordering details are to be released imminently via Rough Trade, or email Clare Yates at Faber at clarey[at]faber.co.uk.

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Phil Newall is 47, from The Wirral - he earns his living not writing about music nor playing music...though sorely wishes he could. He was fortunate enough to see many of the first generation punk bands when they played the U18's matinee shows at Eric's, Liverpool. As an attendee at Eric's he was exposed to punk rock, dub reggae, art rock, and all manner of weirdness; as a customer at Probe Records he was variously served and scowled at by Pete Wylie and Pete Burns - he has written for Record Collector, Whisperin & Hollerin, and Spiral Scratch and wanted to write a book detailing the Liverpool punk scene; however with 'Head-On' Julian Cope beat him to it...and frankly did a much better job.


  1. It would seem that when an artist’s appeal is these days more ‘selective’ they feel that its appropriate to rip off what fans they have left, ooh signed and numbered is it!

    The fact that its a compilation of existing material is staggering, basically you give him £30K and he’ll chat to you at Rough Trade for half an hour, count me in! Oh and just to clean up after he’ll release it normally anyway a bit later! I quite like Cope too, just disappointed as this is as cynical as Radiohead tickets etc, these people are nearly as bad as U2!!!!

  2. You have to be honest with yourself do you really know what Julian cope is “Banning” on about.

    The late Great John Peal introduced me to the world of obscure 7”. And his banal monotone voice was sometimes off putting. But he kept his opinions linear and concise and let you be the final judge

    I personally find his reviews of intellectual pontificating ramblings make me confused rather than enlighten. Comparisons to Leslie Conway “Lester” Bangs are not wholly unjust. To the point I can’t read the full review without reaching out for Google to interpret. An altogether exhausting read

    Julian Cope the Chameleon is a lot of things: Musicologist, antiquarian, occult historian, and an idiosyncratic “Avant guard” musician who promotes pagan, hallucinogenic enlightenment.

    Cope’s writings try’s too in hard in my opinion to be funny, whilst maintaining a sense of imagination and historical accuracy. Thus, purposely keeping the spirt of Lester Bangs’s alive and well.

    I always prefeed Nick Kent myself. He always seemed to be more grounded

    Mr Cope has also published two alternative holy grails of obscure and alternative rock ‘n’ roll with Japrocksampler and the highly collectible Krautrocksampler.

    His duel autobiographical works, Head On and Repossessed, are immensely enjoyable, punctuated, with searing honest portrayals of the incestuous and often sordid betrayal of the Liverpool punk scene and his self-destruct suicidal tendency and wilful disregard of the music industry. Cope has never had a roadmap and is happy with his serpentine approach which sometimes pays off and at other time flounders.

    Writing about music is a philosophically might be an uncomplicated process for Cope with his exhaustive range of ceremonial opinions to dispense. Although you can tell it’s written with honest passion, to the casual reader it can be confusing and full of verbosity and I won’t pretend to be enlightened, just confused.

    I have always like to know where my favourite Artists drew their inspiration, but Cope can at times lose you in translation. His adulation tends to come from the sycophants whom he dearly likes to keep close to his heart.

    Cope’s not interested in writing about or listening to music that helps you unwind, before “Copeulation” or Coitus. More like a Minister sermonizing from his revelational mount, to his disciples.

    He’s the anti-preacher-preacher, the self-appointed savage shaman who dispenses his lysergic-dosed polemics with machine gun like repertoire and rampant creative metaphorical assault. If you can get passed that comfortably then this book might be for you

    Cope’s doctrine, monthly reviews were for over a decade on his Head Heritage website where is legion of followers largely comprising of mainstream misfits would salivate over his every word and muse. Now they have been lovingly re packaged into a 700 page faux-leather compendium. Its Gnostic orgy of self-indulgence.

    Championing bands that the world at large never knew existed. If you try to find or collect any of these vinyl obscurities, you would have better luck and success looking for unicorns. Artists are arranged by decade, with a quirky and insightful introduction to each chapter. Yes, many of the names will be familiar for fans of underground rock and there are some big-name artists are included too.

    I might come across as being highly critical of Cope. But I’m not, he was the first “rock n Roll” idol.

    Sometimes things need to be kept simple. Eggs are Eggs after all and Shit Stinks. For those of us who are unexposed to the joys of outsider or unorthodox rock, there are abundant bands to discover and I’d bet my life that we don’t really care anyway.

    Cope is no Timothy Leary, and this is not 1966.

    Most people I know brought this book Just because its Cope and they feverously collect anything he spouts out. Good, bad or atrocious.


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