Here’s an unlikely confession from a Glasgow-based indie kid…….

…………..I don’t own all that much by The Pastels.

They’ve been part of the local music scene since I was a teenager with their first recordings seeing the light of day back in 1982.  I suppose my problem was that I didn’t take an instant shine to many of the early records and the first few times I caught them live, either as a headline or support act, I was rather underwhelmed.

But looking back now I can see and appreciate just how much of an influence they have had, not just on the local music scene, but on the growth and development of indie music over the past 30+ years.

They must have been one of the most experienced bands to be associated with the C86 movement as by that time they had released a number of singles on various labels including Rough Trade and Creation and by the year in question were on Glass Records for whom they would record their debut LP that was recorded in 86 and released in early 87.  The track on CD86 came from the debut album but it had also been released back in October 1984 as a b-side on a single released on Creation:-

mp3 : The Pastels – Baby Honey

A fantastic song extending to almost seven minutes in length it is actually the last song on CD 2 and so brings the 48-track compilation to an end.  For those who associate The Pastels with tweeness it must come as a bit of a shock as it, to all intent and purposes, rocks out a fair bit.

Anyways, as has been my practice with this series to try to track down any recordings associated with the track on the compilation album then here’s the other two songs on the 1984 single:-

mp3 : The Pastels – A Million Tears
mp3 : The Pastels – Surprise Me

A Million Tears is a fantastic piece of music and while I’m not so enamoured by Surprise Me I take it that a certain Jarvis Cocker listened to it more than a few times and came to be heavily influenced.

Finally…..if anyone ever wants to ever bump into Stephen McRobbie (nee Pastel) you can do so by dropping into Monorail Music in Glasgow where you’ll find him, as owner, behind the counter. His store is something to treasure and has become my first port of call for new music on the few occasions that I buy it!


2 thoughts on “NEXT YEAR’S NOSTALGIA FEST (Part 18 of 48)

  1. Likewise I was never much into them at the time. Some of my mates were, but I was always a bit “funny” about stuff I hadn’t discovered for myself. At some point since, I have grown up and now appreciate one of the better exponents of mid-eighties indie.

  2. Buying an album from Stephen at his shop was a thrill. Thanks for talking me there, JC.

    It’s possible to get quite a bit of the best stuff by the Pastels without spending a fortune… if you’re willing to go the comp and reissue route all the while avoiding those tempting 7″ and 12″ singles. Suck On and Truckload of Trouble are both very good. Suck On has the early stuff and Truckload has singles into the mid-’90s. There is a little overlap between the two but both are needed. Up for a Bit with The Pastels was the first album, and it was reissued by Domino on vinyl a while back. An absolute gem from 2013 is Slow Summits. It’s my favorite from beginning to end.

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