The Looks or the Lifestyle?

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The Looks or the Lifestyle?
The Looks or the Lifestyle? (Pop Will Eat Itself album - cover art).jpg
Studio album by
Released7 September 1992
StudioRockfield Studios, Monmouthshire
Pop Will Eat Itself chronology
Cure for Sanity
The Looks or the Lifestyle?
Dos Dedos Mis Amigos
Singles from The Looks or the Lifestyle?
  1. "Karmadrome/Eat Me Drink Me Love Me Kill Me"
    Released: 26 May 1992
  2. "Bulletproof!"
    Released: 17 August 1992
  3. "Get the Girl, Kill the Baddies"
    Released: 1 January 1993
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic2/5 stars[3]
The Encyclopedia of Popular Music3/5 stars[4]
Select3/5 stars[5]

The Looks or the Lifestyle? is the fourth studio album by English alternative rock band Pop Will Eat Itself, released on 7 September 1992 by RCA Records.


During the Cure for Sanity-era the band were scheduled to play "Dance of the Mad Bastards" on Top of the Pops and recruited Fuzz Townshend to mime the drums (due to previously used drum machine) although they then never did play the song on Top of the Pops.[6] In 1991 the band recruited Townshend as the band's drummer and he agreed. The album was produced by London DJ's Ben Wolff and Andy Dean (also known as Boilerhouse) and the band recorded the album in Rockfield Studios in the Welsh countryside[6] and was mixed in London. The first single to be released was "Karmadrome" (originally called "The Scottish Song", but then changed to "Karmadrome"), with AA-side "Eat Me Drink Me Love Me Kill Me",[6] which went to number 17 in the UK Charts in June '92.[7] They released "Bulletproof", the second single from the album, on 17 August 1992, which didn't do as well as they had hoped but still managed to go to number 24 in the charts and a video was also made. On 7 September 1992 they released the album in UK and Japan and they then released it worldwide in October 1992. On 1 January 1993 they released the "Get the Girl, Kill the Baddies" single which was a massive hit and was their highest charting single going at number 9 in the charts and the album itself went at number 15.


The Looks or the Lifestyle? shows the band working in a dancier style that began to surface on Cure for Sanity,[8] whilst the harsher, industrial rock sound that characterised the band's later work would appear on some songs such as "Eat Me, Drink Me, Love Me, Kill Me" and "Urban Futuristic".[8] The album stirs the band in a less commercial direction, a result of the band ignoring RCA's press for them to in fact head into a more commercial direction.[8]

Critical reception[edit]

The Looks or the Lifestyle? is not considered the band's best album. Josh Landau of AllMusic rated it two stars out of five and said it was "certainly not their best effort,"[8] whilst Trouser Press said the album sounds "factory-built, underwritten and overproduced."[9] The Rough Guide to Rock, on the other hand, called it a "groundbreaking" album.[10]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "England's Finest" - (0:48)
  2. "Eat Me Drink Me Love Me Kill Me" - (3:18)
  3. "Mother" - (4:15)
  4. "Get the Girl + Kill the Baddies" - (5:09)
  5. "I've Always Been a Coward, Baby" - (3:24)
  6. "Token Drug Song" - (4:01)
  7. "Karmadrome" - (4:21)
  8. "Urban Futuristic (Son of South Central)" - (4:14)
  9. "Pretty Pretty" - (4:10)
  10. "I Was a Teenage Grandad" - (4:00)
  11. "Harry Dean Stanton" - (5:14)
  12. "Bulletproof!" - (3:14)


Pop Will Eat Itself

Additional Musicians

  • "The Buzzard" – Wild Guitar (tracks 2, 3, 7 to 10)


  • Artwork – The Designers Republic
  • Written by – Vestan Pance (Pop Will Eat Itself)
  • Mixed by – Kennan Keating
  • Engineer – Noel Rafferty


Chart (1988) Peak
UK Chart 15

Release history[edit]

Region Date Distributing Label
UK/Japan 1 September 1992 RCA
US/Canada 27 October 1992 RCA


  1. ^ "The Looks or the Lifestyle - Pop Will Eat Itself | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  2. ^ LLC, SPIN Media (November 20, 1992). "Spins". SPIN. SPIN Media LLC – via Google Books.
  3. ^ "The Looks or the Lifestyle? – Pop Will Eat Itself". Allmusic.
  4. ^ Larkin, Colin (2006). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music. Volume 6: MUZE. p. 593.CS1 maint: location (link)
  5. ^ "REVIEWS". Select. Retrieved 11 September 2014.
  6. ^ a b c "pop will eat itself - The Looks Or The Lifestyle".
  7. ^ "Artists".
  8. ^ a b c d "The Looks or the Lifestyle - Pop Will Eat Itself | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic" – via
  9. ^ "Pop Will Eat Itself".
  10. ^ The Rough Guide to Rock. Rough Guides. July 20, 2003. ISBN 9781858284576 – via Google Books.