From the mid- to late 1990s, Paul Burgess was invited by Jarvis Cocker to document the British band Pulp, taking photographs during video shoots, live gigs and other events for what has become one of the landmark albums of the period, This Is Hardcore. Written and designed by Burgess and Louise Colbourne, Hardcore contains a candid selection of previously unseen images of the band, behind the scenes and on set, of the four main video shoots made to promote the album. Twenty-five years have passed since Pulp released this extraordinary album, and this book holds up a mirror to the ingenious creative processes and characters behind the seminal record.
With carefully curated images from Burgess’s archive, Hardcore also includes quotations and interviews from then and now by the video directors, band members and other artists involved with the album, including Candida Doyle, Pulp's keyboard player. The book contains contributions from Doug Nichol, John Currin, Stephen Mallinder, Sergei Sviatchenko, John Stezaker and Florian Habicht, all of whom have a connection to the album, the band or the era. There are also visual responses from a selection of younger artists and designers, such as Alexa Vieira, who have been inspired by Burgess’s photographs and the band’s legacy.