THIS DAMNED BAND
The Devil’s Music
released OUT NOW! Publisher dark Horse Comics
Writer Paul Cornell
Artist Tony Parker
With the psychedelic covers and invented discography, Paul Cornell and Tony Parker are having a hell of a lot of fun on this music-themed six-parter.
Exquisitely crafted, it centres on Motherfather, ’70s rockers resembling a more outlandish Black Sabbath, whose deal with the devil turns out to be considerably more real than they expected. It takes the form of a mockumentary, with the camera crew exposing the artifice behind the exaggerated roles that the increasingly unstable bandmates play. While the quartet ingest all manner of mind-altering substances as they descend into madness, their much-maligned groupies and wives are poignantly cast as the moral heart of the story.
With its apocalyptic visions glanced in the bottom of teacups, Cornell’s deft script channels Grant Morrison’s occult-tinged work, but it’s Tony Parker’s excellently varied art that really impresses. It brings to mind Garry Leach and Alan Davis during the more realistically rendered, mundane sections, but he adopts a more fluid, cartoony style for the more fantastical moments. With a sequel ruled out, let’s hope Cornell and Parker reunite soon. Stephen Jewell