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“Difficult Fun”––two words that describe Bob Last best.
“Bob Last, The Man from Fast. The sound of serious young men. The definer of Post Punk,” says Bill Drummond of the KLF in his memoir 45.
Fast Product was Bob’s record company, which released singles by the Gang of Four, the Dead Kennedys and the Human League in the late 1970s. Jon Savage writes in England’s Dreaming: “You could say that Fast Product stands at just the point where Postmodernism fully moved into popular culture (…) You could say that for all that period’s speed, wit and passion, that the drive of the media industries was unstoppable: and you would be right.”
Fast was Accelerationist Pop. After splitting the Human League (with Heaven 17 as the other part) the album Dare was Bob’s masterpiece. Totally pop, a ‘fuck you’ to the music business, a provocation, ‘These are the things that dreams are made of,’ a political intervention (Bob says: “Yes and no”) and––Dare was really successful.
Bob always was a Situationist.
“People thought classical music had a value and went to see plays and things, they were culturally sophisticated, but in my mind they all seemed incredibly naïve and simplistic compared to some kid who might be in a band in his bedroom. They all had a very thick sense of right and wrong and value and so on, whereas the fantastic thing about pop music even as it carries on reinventing itself, even in its more bland phases, is that it’s about not being fixed.” This is from an interview Georg and I did with him in London. It filled almost an entire volume of 80*81:
#7: “I Love My Time”.
I met Bob when we both worked on an Isaac Julian film. We were the white boys, both vegetarians, both socialized by pop. Later he helped me on the soundtrack of Baader. That’s why it’s so good.
Today Bob produces films. He even had an Oscar nomination.
There is still a film we never got made and we should. It’s called Allied Forces.

People
Bob Last
by Christopher Roth