Jesus Of Cool was Nick Lowe’s first solo record. It was renamed Pure Pop For Now People in the U.S by the folks at Columbia Records. They remembered the ruckus in the bible belt over John Lennon’s throwaway comment that “the Beatles are more popular than Jesus.” That led to cardboard and vinyl bonfires of Beatles records in small towns in the hookworm/kudzu belt.
Jesus Of Cool is a helluva power pop/pub rock album with some of Nick’s best early songs: So It Goes, Heart Of The City, and Marie Provost. The last tune was a cheerful ditty about a woman found dead in her flat. Her dog had gnawed at her body to stay alive. Poor, poor Marie.
The cover depicts Nick in 5 pop-rock star outfits. The picture in the bottom middle is of Dave Edmunds who was Nick’s partner in musical crime and the co-leader of Rockpile. A note about Rockpile: they backed both Nick and Dave (as well as Lowe’s then wife, Carlene Carter) on records and live but only recorded one album. The quirks abound.
Here’s the cover:
The back cover was another rock star pose:
Here’s the re-released album with additional tracks: