Shards of lyrics, snatches of conversation – and from side one, track one: I’m gonna lose my thoughts in 200 bars. The usual and delicious duality of meaning – and yes, oh brethren, you really should know this song; I’ve been dropping oblique references with a frequency most metronomic…
Every conversation that features the application of alcohol, sooner or later, evolves into a discussion of music. It what bars exist for; it’s why Jesus invented the process of fermentation – and then immediately followed it up by forming Dexy’s Midnight Runners (knowing Kevin Rowland, probably via a pecularly slanted celestial vision).
I think that I’ve mentioned this previously, in passing, but as it bolsters the theme of today’s “sermon” (pfft), another airing won’t hurt. It was at the bar, a small gig and the lull in between acts. Myself and a music journalist acquaintance arrived at the subject of a particular band (funnily enough, the band quoted in the opening paragraph – one of those planned coincidences in prose that we can all register, then safely ignore). Music hack was not a fan of said act, couldn’t understand my constant state of sharpened enthusiasm for their records – which isn’t so much the problem as the dismissive flavour of her tone. I can’t recall the exact wording – refreshing liquid had obviously been consumed – but a summary would be something along the lines of “Band X is rubbish, nothing but shoegaze”…
Okay, re-reading that we haven’t hit upon the most revetting of anecdotes (tomorrow I’ll invent something far more salacious), but there is a point – indeed, it’s the reason umbrage was taken at the time. It wasn’t even the throwaway summation of something as multi-textural as Band X that stuck in the craw (don’t worry if you’re not there yet – I’ve written about them before, and will do so at length in the future) – rather, it was the use of the word “shoegaze” in the pejorative. Something to be sneered at, dismissed as shallow and formulaic simply because the zeitgeist was, at that particular moment in time, feeding in different waters. I lost touch with the journalist soon after that gig, a fact probably not entirely unrelated to that conversation.
A panoply of records to exhibit below the words – and if we’re heading towards some regular, middle-of-the-week shoegaze feature, then so be it. I’ve bumped into the following in a couple of places, and have always experienced nothing but invigoration. And of that from a record, you can’t ask for much more.
Spotlight Kid / Forget Yourself In Me