September 11, 2023

Was Britpop Actually a Sinister Conspiracy Launched on the World By MI-5 and MI-6?

I love a good conspiracy theory. Some I subscribe to (the Kennedy assassination) while I enjoy others for their utter lunancy (9/11 was an inside job).

I’ve encountered several musical conspiracies over the years, the two most prominent being Kurt Cobain was murdered (of course) and that the CIA secretly gave Bob Marley the cancer that killed him. But up until now, I’ve never considered the Britpop phenomenon of the 90s to be in that league. Until now.

Kevin Shields of My Bloody Valentine recently gave an interview to The Guardian. I quote:

Kevin Shields has raised the notion that Britpop was part of a government conspiracy. Speaking to the Guardian in an exclusive interview, to be published online later today and in the G2 Film&Music section tomorrow, the My Bloody Valentine leader reacted angrily to a mention of the Cool Britannia phenomenon.

“Britpop was massively pushed by the government,” he said. “Someday it would be interesting to read all the MI5 files on Britpop. The wool was pulled right over everyone’s eyes there.

He doesn’t say much more than this, but maybe we should start pulling at some threads. Might Britpop have been some kind of massive government plot to (a) control the youth of Britain; and (b) reap large amounts of foreign currency through the export of this music?

Gawker has a little more on this. One commentor offers these alternate lyrics for Pulp’s “Common People.”

We came from Sheffield we had a thirst for knowledge

We studied espionage at Spy College thats where I caught their eye

They told me the Queen was loaded

I said in that case I’ll have a gun and mobile

They said fine and in thirty seconds time she said, I want to spy on common people

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 37026 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.