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Nick Kent (born 24 December 1951) is a British rock critic and musician.

Along with such writers as Paul Morley, Charles Shaar Murray and Danny Baker, Nick Kent was seen as one of the most important and influential UK music journalists of the 1970s. He wrote for the British music publication New Musical Express, moving to The Face later in his career, and is the author of The Dark Stuff, a collection of his journalism. Kent's work sought to explain from a cynical point of view the lives of rock and roll musicians who risked their sanity and health. His prose was laced with images of self-destruction and ultimate compassion, exploring the reality of being an artist in the late twentieth century.

He is a musician (guitar), and rehearsed with a group of musicians then using the name London SS, but who would go on to form early British punk bands such as The Damned and The Clash. He also jammed with an early incarnation of the Sex Pistols. Kent's relationship with the punk scene was strained, however, particularly by one episode in which future Sex Pistol Sid Vicious and entourage member John "Jah Wobble" Wardle (later bassist with Public Image Ltd) attacked Kent, then already a well-known music critic and ostensibly a symbol of the music industry, at an early gig at the 100 Club. Kent relates the incident in the Malcolm McLaren chapter in Johnny Rogan's book on rock management, 'Starmakers & Svengalis' and in The Filth and the Fury, director Julien Temple's 2000 documentary of the Sex Pistols, and also in The Dark Stuff and in Jon Savage's book England's Dreaming. Wardle recounts the incident similarly in Savage's book.

Kent also had bad relations with the early punk incarnation of Adam & the Ants, starting with his NME review of the soundtrack album to Derek Jarman's film Jubilee in which Kent labelled Adam Ant a Nazi sympathiser on account of the featured song "Deutscher Girls". In retaliation, Adam sarcastically namechecked Kent in the song "Press Darlings" (which later appeared on the B-Side of the Ants' no.2 hit single "Kings Of The Wild Frontier" and on the US edition of the hit album of the same name) claiming that "If passion ends in fashion, then Nick Kent is the best dressed man in town..." In addition, then Ants guitarist the late Matthew Ashman assaulted and humiliated Kent with a potful of strawberry jam in the queue outside Camden's Music Machine venue one evening. [1]

He currently lives in Paris with his wife, and contributes articles occasionally to the British and French press, in particular the Guardian.[2]

His latest book, Apathy for the Devil, an autobiographical look at the 1970s music scene, was published in March 2010.

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