In his new book, Nothing is Real, a collection of essays that stretch and soar across a career spanning five decades, the acclaimed music journalist David Hepworth starts with an essay that tickles and provokes. The Beatles, he suggests, were underrated. Yes, you read that right. Underrated.
You may have raised an eyebrow, given that barely a month goes by without the Fab Four topping some poll or other. But Hepworth maintains that “the richness of their golden period has never been equalled”, with “listeners ricocheting from one hook to another like a metal ball in one of Bally’s machines”. And he insists that for all the “garlands that posterity has placed upon their brow” their genius is underappreciated.
It’s time to acknowledge that applies to Leo Messi, too. Despite all the strikes and superlatives, the countless displays of brilliance and the five Ballons d’Or since he made his debut as a