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David Keenan

Book:

This is Memorial Device

Faber & Faber

It’s the glory years of the early 80s in Airdrie and the post-punk outfit Memorial Device are taking the music scene by storm. David Keenan’s debut novel recreates the youthful intensity, wild energy and rampant excitement of a small Scottish town temporarily transformed by the possibilities of alternative music. At its core is the story of Memorial Device (perhaps the greatest band you’ve never heard of), a group that could have gone all the way were it not for the excess and uncompromising bloody-minded belief that served to confirm them as underground legends.

David Keenan is the author of England’s Hidden Reverse: A Secret History of the Esoteric Underworld and a senior critic on The Wire.

‘Music writer Keenan makes a rewarding switch to fiction, telling the story of a post-punk band in the small Scottish town of Airdrie. Narrated by different people connected with Memorial Device, it is a powerful “hallucinated oral history” of provincial 1980s counter-culture’

Financial Times

‘Beautifully believable and appallingly sad … One of the most acute, affecting and aphoristic novels of recent years … A hallucinatory and haunting vision.’

Toy Litt, The Guardian