Bit of a non-event this week…..but again, huge thanks those of you who took the time to vote and to comment.  Micky’s usual e-mail vote contained this gem re BB v HMHB….

This is like asking if I prefer a bag of crisps with a pint in the pub or a pie & Bovril at a football match.  How do you compare?

He, in the end, went for the whimsical and witty musings of the blokes from Birkenhead, but he’ll be left disappointed that it is the singular bloke from Barking who has prevailed.

The Smiths 24  The Police 7
Billy Bragg 25 Half Man Half Biscuit 12

They now join The Housemartins and The Clash in the quarter-finals.  I can also reveal that The Smiths are the subject of an appeal in that their frontman, having now served a two-game suspension , should be allowed to rejoin the squad.   The organising committee will deliberate over the coming days and the verdict announced at the time the QF draw is revealed.

Here’s what now awaits your deliberations this week.  Couple of crackers IMHO.

Match 5

Echo & The Bunnymen v Butcher Boy

While many might have made a safe prediction that the Scousers would have progressed to this stage, it would have been a brave person to tip that the Scottish posters would have been their opponents, still in the competition when so many huge names have fallen by the wayside.  But that’s the nature of an unseeded and totally random knockout competition for you.

The Cutter, Zimbo and The Killing Moon have been fielded by Mac & co. to see off the differing challenges of Leonard Cohen, Everything But The Girl and The Durutti Column.  The first and third of those songs scored very heavily, evidence that this is free-scoring side more than capable of lifting the trophy as long as they don’t get too cocky.

On a personal note, I’m thrilled for John & co. to be given the chance to take on the really big guns. They had an easy win in Round 1 against The Magnetic Fields, since when they have squeaked through against Martin Stephenson and Wire by just two and three points respectively.  Can they now deliver a result of giant-killing proportions?

There Is No One Who Can Tell Where You’ve Been (from Profit In Your Poetry, 2007) v A Promise (from Heaven Up Here, 1981)

It was ICA #17 for Butcher Boy and here’s what I wrote at the time:-

A tune that is played more than any other within Villain Towers as I’ve taken its first thirty seconds and turned them into a customised ringtone for my mobile phone. All those influences that the early reviewers pinpointed (The Smiths, Tindersticks, Felt, Belle & Sebastian, R.E.M. and Go-Betweens )  can be heard in its perfect two and a half minutes. It’s also evidence that John is a fine singer although he personally considers that he is merely OK….but what it does highlight is just how talented he is as a musical arranger.

ICA #41 for Echo & The Bunnymen, with these words typed at 35,000 feet as I winged by way towards Toronto:-

If Postcard could claim to be the Sound of Young Scotland then those who came to prominence through Zoo Records are entitled to claim the same crown for Young Liverpool. This particular single could easily have been written and recorded by Wylie, Cope or The Wild Swans and it would have been equally majestic. Will Sargeant teased a ridiculous amount of stunning sounds from his guitar over these damn near perfect four minutes.

Interesting that I used the word ‘perfect’ on each occasion.

Match 6

The Jam v The Jesus & Mary Chain

Two more sides who are capable, on their day, of fielding a song which would defeat any opponent. This is a very tasty tie to savour but it is worth remembering that the home side are completely reliant on album tracks as the ICA deliberately precluded any singles or b-sides as they had all just been featured in a long-running series.

Here’s the facts thus far.

Happy Together saw a 34-10 result against T.Rex
Billy Hunt delivered a 37-6 thumping to The Detroit Cobras
Thick As Thieves brought a 35-6 win over Daft Punk.

The results demonstrate that The Jam have been in glorious free-scoring form, but there’s something of a case that the sides thay have faced have been of lower-division standard.

Turning to their opponents….

Reverence resulted in a 33-11 triumph over The Wondermints
Boyfriend’s Dead was far too good for Rod Stewart, with a 30-6 outcome.
Never Understand proved more than enough for a 25-16 win over The The

The first two games showed they were just as free scoring, but again there’s an argument to be had about the quality of their opponents.  They showed no mercy last time out, winning much easier than some had imagined when the draw came out.

Saturday’s Kids (from Setting Sons, 1979) v Guitarman (from Speed of Sound, 1994)

I wrote ICA #52 for the home side:-

A paean to growing up in a working-class household.

At 16, I had no idea what the line ‘stains on the seats – in the back of course’ was all about. Nor did I know who smoked Capstan Non-Filters (Embassy Regal? yup….that was my dad’s choice of habit) and for Selsey Bill and Bracklesam Bay you would have had to substitute places a little nearer home or insert Blackpool which around half of Glasgow seemed to migrate to in the last two weeks in July back in the mid-70s. Otherwise it was a song that resonated with me and even now I can recite every single word of the lyric. But I do accept that, with its descriptions of things that aren’t part of modern society then it’s a lyric very much of its time and so probably won’t resonate much with today’s kids….except perhaps the bit about hating the system. Some things just never change.

It was SWC who put together ICA #94 with the most wonderfully funny pre-amble (you should click on it the link over on the right hand side and remind yourself of it):-

I wanted to include a cover version, simply because the Marychain did a few, mainly old Blues rock numbers from the 60s, and this I think was the best one. I also recommend their version of ‘Little Red Rooster’ because the absolutely crush it, but for me the bit where Reid goes ‘Show ‘em sonnnn’ is bloody marvellous.

Happy listening.  Votes must be in by Friday 25 May at 10pm.


25 thoughts on “BONUS SERIES : THE ICA WORLD CUP : ROUND 4 (Part 3)

  1. Bunnymen – men and women, boys and girls arm in arm singing “a promise!” over and over for 90+ minutes….
    The Jam – kicking up a storm from one end of the pitch to the other.

  2. I have to say Bunnymen. Its A Promise. Despite feeling like I should vote for an underdog.

    My heart says JAMC but its a weaker song that Saturday’s kids. Ooh tricky. I dunno. Mary Chain, a scuffed winklepicker just outreaching a Jam shoe poking it in at the death.

  3. Echo & the Bunnymen
    the Jam
    the losers were no match for their untamed wit.

  4. Bunnymen and Jam
    (this is going to be a procession for these two isn’t it??)

  5. Echo & the Bunnymen
    Jesus & Mary Chain – glorious – it totally appeals to my inner football hooligan

  6. Much as I wanted to vote for the underdog here, on giving the songs a listen, The Bunnymen win
    And again after giving the songs a listen, Mary Chain for me

  7. All four songs are decent – but two stand out above the others – and they happen to be in separate ties.
    Sorry to be so predictable.

  8. Although I have a somewhat bitter feeling that voting for The Jam will mean to turn out in voting against The Clash in the end, Weller & Co. win. And they do so quite clearly, it must be said.

    The other game, well, also quite clearly … The Echos win. I read a cartoon in one of the music papers in the early 90’s about JAMC where one Reid brother said to the other one: ‘You see, being midgets with bad skin doesn’t seem to be outrageous any more …’. Wise words, I’m afraid!

  9. Another Bunnymen and The Jam vote – although one of the view J&MC songs that would have led to that result.

  10. Landslide continues with votes for one of the most sublime Bunnymen songs on vinyl and the Jam’s genius slice of social comment with a lyric rich in resonant period detail.

  11. I keep missing the deadline, so getting in early for a change with…

    Butcher Boy
    The Jam

    Four great songs – thanks JC.

  12. Echo & The Bunnymen
    The Jam

    Is there going to be a women’s ICA world cup in two years? That would be really cool, especially if the world somehow lasts that long.

  13. Butcher Boy in the first match up.

    Saturday’s Kids is one of my fave Jam songs, so they prevail, though I hadn’t heard that JAMC cover before.

  14. Hey JC,

    Loving the Butcher Boy song, going for that this week along with the Jam.



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