Momus (musician)

Nicholas "Nick" Currie (born 11 February 1960), more popularly known under the artist name Momus (after the Greek god of mockery), is a Scottish songwriter, author, blogger, and former journalist for Wired.

Nicholas Currie

(1960-02-11) 11 February 1960
Paisley, Scotland
ResidenceBerlin, Germany
Other namesMomus
  • Songwriter
  • author
  • journalist
Years active1980–present
Musical career

For over thirty years he has been releasing albums on labels in the United Kingdom, the United States, and Japan. In his lyrics and his other writing he makes seemingly random use of decontextualized pieces of continental (mostly French) philosophy, and has built up a personal world he says is "dominated by values like diversity, orientalism, and a respect for otherness."[1]



His album Don't Stop The Night included the single, "The Hairstyle of the Devil", which peaked at No. 94 in the UK Singles Chart in May 1989, and was a local hit, coming in at No. 32 on a year-end list, at San Francisco's KITS Live 105 radio station.[2]

As author and other activities

Momus said in 1991 that "In the future everyone will be famous for fifteen people", which has evolved into a meme, "On the web, everyone will be famous to fifteen people".[3] The quip parodies Andy Warhol's famous prediction that, "In the future, everyone will be famous for fifteen minutes".

The Fotolog.Book with texts by Momus on photoblogging was published in April 2006 by British publishers Thames & Hudson.

Momus has published several books. The Book of Jokes and The Book of Scotlands have received positive reviews in the LA Times and the Guardian. The Book of Scotlands (Sternberg Press) was shortlisted for the Scottish Arts Council's First Book prize. He published The Book of Japans in 2011, also on Sternberg Press, and UnAmerica in 2014 (Penny-Ante Editions).


In 1998, Momus was sued by the songwriter/artist Wendy Carlos for $22 million[4] for his song "Walter Carlos" (from the album The Little Red Songbook, released that year), which postulated that the post–sexual reassignment surgery Wendy could travel back in time to marry her pre-surgery self, Walter. The case was settled out of court, with Momus agreeing to remove the song from subsequent editions of the CD and owing $30,000 in legal fees.[5]

Personal life

In the last two decades, Momus has lived in London, Paris, Tokyo, New York and Berlin. He made Osaka his home from 2010 to 2018, and currently splits his time between Berlin and Paris. He is an atheist.[6]

In December 1997, he contracted acanthamoeba keratitis in his right eye due to a contact lens mishap sustained whilst on holiday in Greece, causing loss of vision on that side.[7][8] Although his sight subsequently improved following surgery,[9] he has suffered lingering effects from the infection since, causing him to often be photographed in an eyepatch, very dark glasses, or squinting.

His cousin is musician Justin Currie, the lead singer and songwriter of Del Amitri.


Studio albums

Album name Release year
Circus Maximus 1986
The Poison Boyfriend 1987
Tender Pervert 1988
Don’t Stop The Night 1989
Hippopotamomus 1991
The Ultraconformist (Live Whilst Out of Fashion) 1992
Timelord 1993
Slender Sherbert 1995
The Philosophy of Momus
Ping Pong 1997
The Little Red Songbook 1998
Stars Forever 1999
Folktronic 2001
Oskar Tennis Champion 2003
Summerisle, a collaboration with Anne Laplantine 2004
Otto Spooky 2005
Ocky Milk 2006
Joemus, a collaboration with Joe Howe 2008
Hypnoprism 2010
Thunderclown, a collaboration with John Henriksson 2011
Bibliotek 2012
In Samoa 2012
Sunbutler, a collaboration with Joe Howe 2012
MOMUSMCCLYMONT, a collaboration with David McClymont 2013
Bambi 2013
MOMUSMCCLYMONT II", a collaboration with David McClymont 2014
Turpsycore 2015
Glyptothek 2015
Scobberlotchers 2016
Pillycock 2017
Pantaloon 2018
Akkordion 2019


Album name Release year
Monsters of Love 1990
Learning to Be Human 1994
Twenty Vodka Jellies 1996
Forbidden Software Timemachine 2003
Pubic Intellectual: An Anthology 1986-2016 (3 CD Box set) 2016

Singles and EPs

Album name Release year
The Beast With 3 Backs 1985
Murderers, The Hope of Women 1986
Nicky 1986
The Hairstyle of the Devil UK #94 1989
Spacewalk 1992
The Sadness of Things 1995
The Thunderclown 2011


  1. "Pubic Intellectual - An Anthology". Rough Trade. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  2. "Live 105 Top 105.3 of 1989".
  3. Momus (1991). "POP STARS? NEIN DANKE! In the future everyone will be famous for fifteen people..." Grimsby Fishmarket. Retrieved 7 October 2008.
  4. Shepherd, Fiona (10 September 1999). "The World Can Change in a Matter of Momus". The Scotsman. UK. p. 23. Archived from the original on 28 March 2015. Retrieved 15 April 2013 via HighBeam.
  5. Selvin, Joel; Vaziri, Aidin; Heller, Greg (7 November 1999). "$1,000 Bought a Custom Song on Momus' Latest Album". The San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 15 April 2013.
  6. Thompson, Stephen (6 September 2000). "Is there a God?". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 4 September 2009.
  7. Gerry Visco (13 October 2007). "Momus Revisited". New York Press. Archived from the original on 22 October 2008. Retrieved 29 May 2008.
  8. Momus (April 1998). "Story of an Eye". Retrieved 29 May 2008.
  9. "Momus |".
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