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A question of culture with the writer Rob Doyle

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Rob Doyle

Rob Doyle

Rob Doyle

The writer on the briliance of the Pogues and the work by Nietszche which features the Antichrist with a puppy-like side.

FAVOURITE BOOK?

Friedrich Nietzsche's Human, All Too Human, because, like all the best books, it dispenses with the boring parts and offers an experience of unblemished fascination. Also, it's the one in which the Antichrist shows his tender, puppy-like side.

LAST BOOK YOU LOVED?

Gilbert Sorrentino's Imagined Qualities of Actual Things. Dreary title, but this one impressed me as a missing link in 20th century American fiction, and the apex of the postmodern school. Bitter as hell but desperately sad - a murderous satire of the art and publishing worlds.

FAVOURITE FILM?

Tarkovsky's Stalker when I'm in the mood for a giggle, and Withnail & I if I want transcendental emotion and religious luminosity.

BEST STAGE SHOW?

Death of a Salesman, years ago at the Gaiety, simply because the play is so sad and magnificent. Or a dystopian-futuristic take on Titus Andronicus I saw at the Project Arts Centre, which inflamed me with its terrible vision of a ferocious anti-Christian morality.

BEST GIG?

Leonard Cohen on a shimmering late summer's evening in Kilmainham. If you were there, you'll know. Or else Bright Eyes in London's Royal Albert Hall, because it was exactly the kind of ecstatic, shamanic, mundanity-vanquishing event all musical performances strive to be.

FAVOURITE BAND?

The Pogues, for the raging, exalted lyricism, the random howls, the noble and complete lack of restraint, the fire and fury, the brutal and self-decimating poetry. (But then there's also Radiohead, The Clash, Bright Eyes, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds).

FAVOURITE TV SHOW?

I used to like Mad Men until it began to irritate me, when Don Draper started being taken as some kind of glamorous role model. I enjoy Love-Hate, Girls, Treme, The Wire, True Detective. I don't bother watching TV shows unless they're of an extremely high calibre (you can usually tell after a single episode, or even the first 20 minutes). There are too many books still to be read, and we haven't got forever.

CULTURAL BLINDSPOT?

I read nowhere near as much poetry as I feel I should.

Rob Doyle's novel Here Are the Young Men is shortlisted for the Sunday Independent Best Newcomer of the Year in this year's Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards. Winners will be announced on November 24; readers can vote at www.bgeirishbookawards.ie.

Indo Review