Trigger Warning: This novel and review discuss the following: love, relationships, heartbreak, diversity, equality, death.
Goodreads Rating: 5 Stars
When I saw that this collection existed, I knew I had to own it. It took me a couple of tries to purchase this book in store, but I was patient and finally snagged a copy not too long ago. I read it cover to cover the day I bought it. Back in 2010, my cool college roomie (Hey Shannon!) brought up the band’s name and told me to give Florence and The Machine a listen. I was a fan from that point on. When I listened to them, I could feel the power and magic in their songs, and I felt like I belonged in some sort of warrior princess fairy tale, ready to kick ass but look totally ethereal in doing so.
The collection is comprised of five sections- one for each album (Lungs, Ceremonials, How Big How Blue How Beautiful, and High As Hope), and one for a collection of Welch’s poetry. Within each section are the lyrics to the band’s songs (sorted by album), mementos from the tours, and notes from Welch. In between all these are photos, art pieces and designs that are just freaking gorgeous. The whole compilation is like a scrapbook from Welch’s point of view.
I also just want to note that if you’ve never really listened to the band, or thought about their lyrics, then please do. They’re a wonderful example of how poetry can become lyrics, how lyrics can become a performance. They’re very clever and create such imagery- and this is why the band is often considered “art rock”. In my opinion, there aren’t a ton of bands out there who get this creative with there lyrics, which makes them a standout group. I also love how Welch’s voice is very distinct, and while reading her book, I could easily bring up the sound of it to accompany the words on the page.
I don’t know what else to say about this other than it’s a beautiful clothbound piece of art, and absolutely perfect for anyone who is a fan of the band or Welch herself.
Published: July 10, 2018
Publisher: Crown Archetype
TL/DR: Useless Magic by Florence Welch is a collection of poetry and music lyrics, and snippets of inspirational imagery from lead singer of Florence and the Machine.
Read it? Yes! It’s such a visually gorgeous collection, and gives insight to what’s behind the lyrics of the band’s songs.
Recommend it? Yes, to those who enjoy Florence and the Machine, it’s a must.
Buy it? Just do yourself a favor and buy it. It’ll be one of the most gorgeous books you’ll own!