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HOW UNCOOL ARE YOU; Robbie tops list of stars who think they are hip but aren't really.

Byline: JOHN DINGWALL

TRENDY music mag NME has confirmed what this picture has always suggested - Robbie Williams is rock `n' roll's uncoolest star.

Despite his cheeky grin, superstar status and a recently-signed pounds 80 million deal with EMI, Robbie is top of the mag's "They Think They're Cool ... But Aren't" list.

The former Take That singer, who has spent his entire solo career trying to shake off his reputation as the boy band's "fat dancer", finished ahead of supposedly hip New York band Fischerspooner, Shirley Manson and Stereophonics singer Kelly Jones.

Extravagant US star P. Diddy comes in at No.5, and others in the top 10 include DJ Paul Oakenfold in eighth and Britney Spears in 10th.

NME compiled the list to unveil the people it believes are no longer cutting-edge in a fickle music world.

The magazine's Nicola Wood says: "The list comprises 10 people who have just lost it. Robbie permanently tries to display this image of being hip and cool, but he is really being sensible - he is going for the money.

"He has had his day - he was putting out some really good stuff, but now his lyrics aren't as up to date as they used to be. They aren't making as much of an impact as some of the new up -and-coming bands."

She adds: "Fischerspooner made it on to the list because their live gigs were supposed to be amazing, but when they came to perform, a man was standing on the stage in tights in front of a snow machine.

"It was like they were a band at a fresher's ball."

At the other end of the spectrum, Jack White from Detroit band The White Stripes, topped the NME `Cool List' 2002 for his sex appeal, dress and attitude, beating drummer Meg White and Fabrizio Moretti of The Strokes to the No. 1 spot.

Nicola says: "The people who have topped our cool list are the people who are at the forefront of the music scene and are taking it forward."

j.dingwall@dailyrecord.co.uk

Think they are cool ..

but they aren't

1 Robbie Williams

2 Fischerspooner

3 Shirley Manson

4 Kelly Jones; 5 P. Diddy

6 Fred Durst

7 Keith Richards

8 Paul Oakenfold

9 Blazin' Squad

10 Britney Spears

The NME Cool List

1 Jack White (White Stripes)

2 Fabrizio Moretti (The Strokes)

3 Dolf De Datsun (The Datsuns)

4 Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeah)

5 Mike Skinner (aka The Streets)

6 Meg White (White Stripes)

7 Marcie Bolen (Von Bondies)

8 Craig Nicholls (The Vines);

9 Nelly; 10 Pelle (The Hives)

KEITH RICHARDS

Nicola says: "He's a real state and should seriously consider retirement. He is currently walking around with what looks like half a cutlery drawer stuck on his head."

P. DIDDY

Nicola says: "The change in name from Puff Daddy - which was actually quite cool - to P. Diddy meant a whole load of coolness and credibility was lost."

ROBBIE WILLIAMS

Nicola says: "His new album will sell like hotcakes, but it's a self-indulgent disc which focuses on the centre of Robbie's world - himself.

FISCHERSPOONER

The arty American techno duo hyped themselves as the musical equivalent of Star Wars. Nicola says: "Their album and single bombed."

SHIRLEY MANSON

Nicola says: "Has a trusty team of stylists behind her that keep her in the fashion pages and the public eye. Tries to appear cool through constant whining of self-loathing."

BLAZIN' SQUAD

Nicola says: "They sound like a school assembly and with their white tracksuits they could be wearing school uniform."

KELLY JONES

Nicola says: "The Stereophonics struggle with the concept of cool. Jones is tragic."

FRED DURST

The Limp Bizkit frontman came off worse in a verbal sparring match with Eminem. Nicola says: "Well known in the music biz for his whiney bad attitude."

BRITNEY SPEARS

Nicola says: "Britney tries too hard. The horrific dress sense seems to know no bounds. Are her stylists serious? Everything is going wrong for Britney."

OAKIE

DJ Oakie doesn't do well in NME's eyes.

Nicola says: "His DJ-ing turns would look more at home at a kids' party."
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Oct 31, 2002
Words:686
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