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Robert Dean Lurie

No Certainty Attached: Steve Kilbey and The Church

Published by Verse Chorus

Jul 21, 2009 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Robert Dean Lurie may be The Church’s biggest fan, and he approaches the task of documenting the band’s history from this admittedly biased perspective. Still, No Certainty Attached is a satisfying and informative read filled with more objective fact than subjective feeling. Lurie’s writing is filled with anecdotes. The narrative is paced well, balancing the band’s early history with its “Under the Milky Way”-era stardom, Kilbey’s history with heroin abuse, and The Church’s final artistic redemption.

The descriptions of the band’s music, albums, and songwriting in general are not tedious or overwrought in their analyses, and Lurie includes in his research a good overview of press materials, reviews, and various historical data that puts everything into its proper context. The book does tend to lag at the end, weighted by information on numerous later-period Church albums and solo projects, which are not given the same time and attention as the earlier, more well-known work.

Ultimately though, for a listening public that is largely unaware of The Church, No Certainty Attached provides a valuable record. (

Author rating: 7/10

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Average reader rating: 8/10


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August 8th 2009

I think I’ll get this from the library if they have it… I know nothing about this band.

Bradley Albert Burkley
September 9th 2009

I’m in the middle of reading this book and was stoked to see it reviewed in one of my favorite mags. The review is pretty strait up, as is the book. Interesting for those who know about Steve Kilbey or not. For those who have been in or are in music groups, with it’s drama and challlenges, No Certainty Attached of particular interest.

January 10th 2011

The adage is an old one, but accurate enough. Never meet your idols and heroes, because you’re bound to be disappointed. Robert Dean Lurie paid no mind. In 2003 he flew from his home in the US to Australia, to meet his idol Steve Kilbey. The fruit of his visit is No Certainty Attached,, an authorized biography made with Kilbey’s extensive participation “Rolex Prices