It was via Simon's No Rock and Roll Fun blog that I earlier learned about the death of Steven Wells from cancer on Tuesday (http://xrrf.blogspot.com/2009/06/rip-steven-wells.html ).
"Swells" had moved to the US in recent years & ensured he made his mark in Philadelphia (http://philadelphiaweekly.com/news-and-opinion/in-extremis/Steven-Wells-Says-Goodbye-49054426.html ), & also blogged for the Guardian music & sports sections (http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/musicblog/2009/jun/25/steven-wells-nme-tribute ).
However, it is as an excoriating NME scribe in the 80s & 90s that Steven will be best remembered.
I always approached his NME pieces with a mixture of relish & awe. Throughout today bloggers & ex-colleagues have highlighted his socialist principles & basic humanity. I didn't always agree with his articles, but he was fearless in saying what he thought. He could be brilliantly scornful of left-wing pop stars who talked the talk, but didn't entirely walk the walk. However, that was as nothing compared to the rage & anger he directed at Thatcher & the system she represented. Steven Wells was truly a one-off.