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THE CHARITY SHOP (VINYL YEARS) CHALLENGE : PART 3

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JC writes…….

Last time round I changed the title of this series which was a bit naughty of me.  This is the third and final part of what happened after SWC visited the Oxfam Charity Shop in Totnes and bought the then recuperating Badger some indie vinyl on the premise that he write about them for T(n)VV.

Badger writes………………

The fifth, sixth and seventh records are a lot better than the third and fourth ones;  two were by bands that I know and like and one was a band that I had never heard of, but one which led SWC into another one of misty eyed tales from the past. He’ll take over in a bit after we talk about Record Five.

SWC’s daughter unwraps the fifth record and it is a mash up of different colours and swirling images it also has some writing on it, in red pen. I look at and then I tilt the record sideways to try and read what it says.

“Is this signed?” I ask SWC.

He nods enthusiastically, “That record has been touched by four bonafide rockstars” he tells me. Bonafide rockstars is pushing it a bit, but all the same, this is exciting news. I own three signed records, (well four now), one is my pride and joy a vinyl picture disc of ‘The Holy Bible’ signed by Richey Edwards, the second is a Carter USM 12” signed by Jon Fat Beast (RIP) and the third is splodgenessabounds 7” signed apparently by band member ‘Baby Greensleeves’. The authenticity of that is dubious at best.

The record is ‘Is It Too Late?’ by Senseless Things. It cost £1.99 and that includes the signatures of all four members of the Senseless Things which as SWC adds “Probably increases the value by at least 50p”.

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mp3 : Senseless Things – Is It Too Late

Senseless Things are a band dear to my heart. They feature on the WYCRA 200 both in this guise and in one of their off shoot bands Delakota.

‘Is It Too Late?’ was one of the band’s early singles, their second or third I think. It has a sleeve designed by Jamie Hewlett the guy behind Tank Girl and Gorillaz and it is a brilliant couple of minutes of punky pop.

The interesting thing is that a few years back Senseless Things released a singles compilation and this record wasn’t included on it, I imagine this is because of record company rules and the like but it almost feels forgotten about, which is a massive shame.

I’ve also attached two of the three B Sides which are pretty much the same thing, two minutes shouty indie punk pop with thrashy guitars and sneery vocals. All excellent and a welcome addition to any record collection I would say.

mp3 : Senseless Things – Andi In a Karmann
mp3 : Senseless Things – Ponyboy

Next up I’ll hand over to SWC

“There was this kid at college, we’ll call him Jeremy in case he is reading. Jeremy told everyone he was in a band, I think in an attempt to impress impressionable girls, his band were always playing gigs in London and around the South East, they were supporting larger acts in proper venues (rather than just playing in the same old dreary Maidstone pubs). They were called Spartac – with the R the wrong way round to make it look Russian, which isn’t a bad name for a band to be honest – yet something didn’t add up, no one had seen this band, apart from Sad Gary, the bloke who no one listened to, he told us he had seen them. Jeremy tried to convince me that his band Spartac had played at the club I DJ’ed at and they supported a band called Tiny Monroe. They didn’t because Tiny Monroe never played at the club, they were supposed to, but they actually did cancel due to illness. The support band that night were called Torque and I know that because the lead guitarist in said band was my mate Dom and they needed the ‘exposure’. The general feeling was that Jeremy was a bullshitter but he was a convincing one because people started to believe him a couple of other people started to mention that they had seen them and they were playing a demo CD of his band.

Anyway, I said, to Jeremy that if he provided me with a demo tape I would get them a gig in the next few weeks, we had a few decent bands coming up at the club and I could probably get them a support slot when Delicatessen play. “Oh I know them, we played with them in London a few weeks back I’ll dig you out a demo, is a CD ok”. Yup absolutely.

About a week later, Jeremy gives me a demo. I play it that evening at home, it sounds familiar. I have heard this before, I know I have, I just can’t place it, maybe, at a party somewhere, maybe he was in a band. I mean it sounded like a demo, it was pretty badly recorded.

About two weeks later, my mate John and I went to London to see a Pop Will Eat Itself gig at the much missed Marquee club. The support band that night was a band from the same next of the woods as them, they are called Scorpio Rising and they come on and bugger me sideways the opening song they play is track 2 on Spartac’s Demo CD – Scorpio Rising call it ‘Watermelon’ Spartac call it ‘Inside Her’.

The next weekend John tracks down a copy of ‘Watermelon’ by Scorpio Rising in a record shop and we play it to a couple of our mates, and then I play Spartac. There is general disbelief and laughter, John then tells me that I should play this at the club the next time we see Jeremy there, which isn’t often to be fair, he’s probably off playing live at the Viper Rooms in LA or something.

We don’t do that. Deciding that it would be cruel and besides like me and a load of others Jeremy would be leaving the area in October to go to University (in Huddersfield if I remember rightly), we let things lie, smug in the knowledge that we know. Around August, Jeremy announces that his band have split due to ‘musical differences’ and that three of them were continuing without him and the drummer under a different name. Shame, another great lost band, like the Badgers I suppose.”

And now it’s back to Badger….

Yes although that’s quite enough of them.

Record Six is ‘Saturnalia EP’ by Scorpio Rising and is kind of ace in warped wobbly kind of way – the recording is not great – the B Side is ‘Watermelon’. Price £1.50

mp3 : Scorpio Rising – Saturnalia
mp3 : Scorpio Rising – Watermelon

…and finally we come to record 7 – another day another remix 12” but this one is slightly different in that it is actually quite good, I won’t bang on about this one because I have to be somewhere in fifteen minutes and I’m running late, but I’ve saved the best for last.

Record 7 – Price £2.50

mp3 : Manic Street Preachers – Australia (Lionrock remix)

BADGER

 

AN IMAGINARY EVENING WITH MUSICIANS

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A guest contribution from xxxjim

DinnerParty-MAIN

Hey JC

This is a change from an imaginary compilation, but I’m pretty sure I could do one for almost every singer/band mentioned – now there’s a challenge!

Anyway, a comment made a while ago got me thinking. It was on a Wedding Present / Cinerama related posting and it was along the lines of David Gedge being someone that the commenter, paulb3015 would most like as a friend.

I know it’s never a good idea to meet your heroes but I still think it would be great to spend an evening in the company of these musicians. I guess they all seem quite approachable to me and the sort of people that have a lot of stories and would be fun to be around.

So I give you the eight musicians I’d love to spend an evening with, be it for a beer or two or a meal all round a table, shooting the breeze. Eight seems about the right number – enough that you’d get to talk to everyone but not too many that no one can hear what anyone else is saying. And it would have to be the right mix of musicians – not too many egos.

They are not necessarily my all time favourite musicians or my favourite bands – in some cases they are – I just think they are all interesting people. One thing a lot of them have in common is that they like to tell a story when you see them live – I know that it can be the same story every night but as long as it seems like it’s off the cuff, I’m happy with that.

I haven’t worked out a seating plan but obviously there’s be two seats reserved for Mr and Mrs Vinyl Villain.

Kristin Hersh

Her music has been a constant in my life since I was about 18 – I’ve kind of grown up with her. I’m not an obsessive fan but I do try and see her whenever she performs. One of only two famous people to reply to me on Twitter (not that I use it very often), which makes her an all round nice person. (The other one was David Gedge)

mp3: Kristin Hersh – Sundrops (from ‘Hips and Makers’ LP)

Colin Meloy

Because he seems like a good bloke – a lot of The Decemberists’ songs are stories and he spins a good yarn on stage so I’m sure there would be plenty to talk about.

mp3 : The Decemberists – The Rake’s Song (from ‘The Hazards of Love’ LP)

David Gedge

I don’t need to explain this one – I’m pretty sure that every reader of TVV would want to have a beer with David Gedge.

mp3 : The Wedding Present – Give My Love To Kevin (acoustic) (from ‘George Best (plus)’ LP)

Leonard Cohen

I thought maybe Prince would be entertaining but I imagine everyone would just sit there dumbstruck thinking ‘Bloody hell – it’s Prince’ and no-one saying a word. Either that or he’d play ping pong with everyone and thrash them. But I thought it would be good to have an absolute megastar at the table, and someone much older – and someone who has been a hero of mine since my art student days. He’d bring a touch of wisdom to proceedings and his fantastic gravelly voice. And you never know he might feed us tea and oranges that come all the way from China.

mp3 : Leonard Cohen – Slow (from ‘Popular Problems’ LP)

Viv Albertine

A year ago she wouldn’t have been a dinner guest but her memoir ‘Clothes, Music, Boys’ is great – the best music book I’ve read this year – better than Kim Gordon and better than Eddie Argos (seriously). And she seems like a nice person – and normal. And because I love this song which is one of my favourite songs of the year (even though it came out a while ago, it’s new to me).

mp3 : Viv Albertine – Confessions of a MILF  (from ‘The Vermillion Borders’ LP)

Gruff Rhys

Because he took a puppet around America to try and find a Welsh-speaking tribe of native Americans. And he made a powerpoint presentation about it. And an album. And he weaves it all into a great story. And obviously because he is a Super Furry Animal.

mp3 : Gruff Rhys – Iolo (from ‘American Interior’ LP)

Holly Johnson

The first pop star that I really idolized – about 10 years ago I saw him in a shop and I was too star struck to go and say hello. His memoir is also worth a read.

mp3 : Frankie Goes to Hollywod – Relax (7” single)

Nicky Wire

The second Welshman – he’d make sure that it wasn’t all back slappery and coziness. Plus, if all else fails we can talk about sport – and he can give my daughter tips on applying eyeliner.

mp3 : Manic Street Preachers – Europa Geht Durch Mich (from ‘Futurology’ LP)

Anyway, I hope you like it – and it’s the sort of thing that fits in well on TVV.

cheers

xxxjim

IT’S COVERS WEEK ON T(n)VV : DAY 3

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covermebad_small

With thanks to SWC for mentioning these yesterday.  Covers of songs that are so well-known that I can be lazy and not provide background notes:-

mp3 : China Drum – Wuthering Heights

mp3 : Futureheads – Hounds Of Love

mp3 : Oasis – I Am The Walrus

mp3 : The Streets – Your Song

mp3 : Manic Street Preachers – Umbrella

mp3 : The Wedding Present – Back For Good

Enjoy.