Friday, 12 April 2013

Let Me Tell You About: Max Malagnino

Whenever a new release comes around I'm invariably on the scrounge for favours etc and I'm always gobsmacked at the MM support system that always seems to kick in. 
With that in mind I'm going to do the odd piece on the back room boys (and girls) who help keep the Miracle Mile/Jones wheels a spinning...

Let me tell you about Max: 

In the mid nineties, before 'Bicycle Thieves' was released we had a 'demo tape' (remember those?) doing the rounds. 
It was called 'Bluer Skies' and contained maybe half a dozen songs, some of which went on to a promo CD ('God's Own Swimming Pool') that then went on to shape 'BT'.
I received a call (before emails) from this Italian journalist Max Malagnino who, as well as writing for 'Rockstar' (Italy's version of 'Q') was an enthusiastic support of Scottish bands. 
His pride and joy was his fanzine website 'Rainsound' (which was subtitled 'The Scottish Music Club').
Max had the 'Bluer Skies' tape:

Max: "I got it from the guy who was my 'Rainsound' mate at the time that it was still a paper 'magazine'. I remember him telling me how great that record was..... He'd got it from a Scottish friend somewhere in Britain, I think. After I wore out the tape, I found this ad in Q mag. Some guy had it on catalogue and I sent him a letter to see if I could buy it on CD as my tape was hardly playable..."

Max was convinced that MM were Scottish and sang our praises to a (largely) indifferent world. 
He was the first journo' to rave; since then he's been an ever present spirit, encouraging, supporting (and giving all too honest views about) the music as it developed.
When we needed a website but couldn't afford one, Max stepped in and painstakingly taught himself how to design and host one.
He's redesigned the current one:
Now married with children and little time for himself, he continues to enthuse (in a typically dry, droll way).
Every band needs a 'Max'; someone who cajoles, criticizes and supports.
I've a sneaking suspicion that Max's favorite MM album still remains 'Bicycle Thieves' and yet he still, I'm sure, looks forward to each release.
I've only met Max once, we went to a gig and had a beer in Islington. 
The night ended with us ducking flying glasses and chairs in a classic bar room brawl in The Angel. Nowt to do with us.
There's nothing fawning or unnatural about him, he just loves music and forever lives in the hope of finding something new to rave about; a kindred spirit indeed.
Max is about to relaunch 'Rainsound' and is keen to air other folks enthusiasms. 
He's asked me to write some stuff, do some reviews etc. I'm looking forward to it.
If you fancy the idea of writing something for him, or just supporting a good guy's passion, drop him a line at:
There are other media folk who have been ceaseless in their support and kept our heads up (Barry Cross/Nick Reddyhoff/Mark Edwards/Peter Beckmann/Simon Holland/Andrew Geddes/Derek at Backs/Johnny Black/Jeremy Searle/Ken Kessler/Bob Harris/Steve Morris/Mike Davis/Rob Quicke/Fred Dellar/Folmer Jepsen and many more) but Max was there first and remains the original 'Friend of Miracle Mile'.
We've only met once, but he is my mate; I'm blessed by his friendship.
If you ever meet him, please buy him a drink from me, but for Christ's sake don't mention Juventus...


  1. In my early internet days 'Rainsound' was the first site I checked daily, so to hear it's about to be relaunched is fantastic news.
    Max gave me my chance to review an album and interview a band,( the rather wonderful Hollow Horse), aswell as turn me on to some great music. I think I discovered the Scottish band Splendid on his pages.It's a band I cherish and will soon appear on my top 20 list,
    If I ever meet Max I'll buy him a drink from you ,Trev, but not before I buy him a drink from myself.