Current listening

Blimey. I can’t stop listening to this one. To say that just listening to it is like the last twenty years never passed is a major understatement. 19 years old. “Snowball” on the record player and expecting the latest missive from PO Box 691 Bristol any time. It was just the lo-fi home made politicised enthusiastic beauty of it all. Anger and melancholy combined. And the music (or at least some of it) was just great. Snowball Lyceum and the Sensitive era was for me the high point but there were loads of great singles from that point on as well. I never did the whole paisley shirt bowl hair “tonight Matthew I am Stephen Pastel” thing but I signed up fully to the whole spirit of the thing. In fact I wore my tartan dancing trousers a hangdog sheepskin coat and my Marlboro Hip Hop Queens t-shirt to a Heavenly gig just to be contrary and had an interesting conversation with Amelia Fletcher about Kylie, who was right then in her imperial “Better the devil you know, Step back in time, What do I have to do, Shocked” period. And Matt and Clare did plenty to avoid pandering to their tweecore following. I remember smiling for days when the Poppycocteau fanzine arrived. Always wondered what happened to Paul who wrote it and some wonderful fanzines afterwards and with whom I had much correspondence. We even swapped trash nrg covers tapes at one stage.

So yes. Released in 2009. The spirit of 1986. Channelling The Field Mice, The Jesus and Mary Chain, and early MBV. And utterly utterly derivative, but it still sounds wonderful. Nostalgia is for the lame, but it’s ability to transport means I cannot resist it. And I love the thought of hundreds of 19 year old New Yorkers discovering it and thinking they have found their own amazing new sounds. I wonder if there are fanzines to go with their scene as well. I hope so. Paper ones mind. A computer screen is just not the same as a small A5 sheaf of papers filled with love and hate and boys and girls and just the whole excitement of being young stapled together and hastily shoved in a small khaki army surplus shoulder bag. So this will be one of my favourite records from 2009. No question.

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