Wednesday, 18 February 2015

The price of fame ...

Having decided to go all out for commercial success after the 1985 split, victory in the name battle with those who would become The Mission turned bitter sweet as the latter began to enjoy UK chart success with a sound, image and fanbase that relied heavily on their TSOM past. When Eldritch finally unleashed the latest version of his own project, with photogenic Patricia Morrison as his sidekick and the legendary Jim Steinman at the production desk, it was no contest, although Von soon found that he had less control over his image and public persona than he had had previously, an issue that remains close to his heart even today. Miming on obscure European TV chart shows, interviews with daily papers and magazines who had hitherto ignored the band, all deemed necessary for the greater good.

The ultimate ignominy was probably this sticker from the 1988 Smash Hits sticker collection produced by Italian sticker giants Panini, which apart from being obsessed with unnecessary "quotation marks", contains a ridiculous number of mistakes (the omission of the definite article in the band's name, both Eldritch's and Hussey's surnames incorrectly rendered, Craig Adams being described as a "guitar twirler") and includes the frankly libellous accusation that Von went "mad in Germany," not a wise move when describing a notoriously litigious rock star. Having said that, this era of TSOM keeps the latest incarnation of Spiggy in cat food to this day (supplemeneted by the odd European festival appearance), so Eldritch definitely had the last (and deepest) laugh.

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