Nothing released this year has really set this pulse racing but I sense a tripping, hopping cavalry may be about to canter over a nearby hillock, turntables in saddle-bags. Portishead have a new album, Third, which hits the outlets in April. The early reviews are glowing (Uncut magazine was practically salivating) and I shall be adding this product to my Amazon wishlist forthwith. I’m tempted by the latest
Again, I was lured and tempted by the Oxfam ‘three tapes for a quid’ shelf on Saturday. I bought The Story of The Clash, Volume One which features mainly early songs by the punk legends. Verily, who could tire of Police and Thieves? I also picked up a copy of Sound On Sound by Bill Nelson’s Red Noise. This looked intriguing. I guess Bill Nelson is better known for his work with Be Bop Deluxe but I’ve heard of Red Noise and noted an interesting merger of post-punk attitude and pioneering electronica. Howe’er, the tape is broken so I shall have to wait to discover the greatness – or otherwise – of Nelson! The third spool contains a long player that I already own on vinyl but have not played for many a merry year: George Best by The Wedding Present. It sounds wonderful, unwithered by age. From the breathy splendour of Everyone Thinks He Looks Daft to the witty evocation of gawkish first love that is A Million Miles, this recording brings back many fond memories of John Peel Festive Fifties, sweaty mosh-pits and countless carefree capers. All the songs are wondrous indie gems with much darkness lurking behind the wit, riffs and repartee: My Favourite Dress is a compelling, powerful and emotional song about jealousy that always catches the breath while Give My Love To Kevin – a personal favourite of D - also resonates with rancour and bitterness directed towards a former lover. This is a splendid album that I am tempted to award ‘masterpiece’ status to, a vibrant independent belter packed to the rafters with passion, melody, intelligence and youthful ebullience. I salute it and shall play it loudly in my motor car on my next excursion. Parp! Parp!