Julian Cope was enjoying being a pop star. Reward and Treason had taken him into the charts, onto Top of the Pops and into the pages of the likes of Smash Hits magazine where teenage girls were coo-ing over his good looks.

Only he knew in advance that the next again single was going to be even more poppy, lighter and catchier than anything else he’d ever written with its killer-chorus and umpteen ba-ba-ba-ba-ba sing-a-long moments, so he put a killer track onto its b-side as a reminder that he remained more than capable of delivering material that was ahead of the curve:-

mp3 : The Teardrop Explodes – Christ versus Warhol

Radiohead would rip off this tune for Karma Police a few year later…….go on, admit the openings are identical.

It was a stroke of genius to put this on the b-side rather than parent album Wilder as it prevented any fundamentalists getting hot under the collar and demanding it be withdrawn. Oh and have a listen just before the two-minute mark for what could pass as Jarvis Cocker‘s recording debut….

Here’s the fabulous a-side. Criminal it stalled at #25:-

mp3 : The Teardrop Explodes – Passionate Friend

Tune in tomorrow for a guest ICA on another of our maverick geniuses.


8 thoughts on “BELTER OF A B-SIDE

  1. A maverick genius indeed JC. Remember having many one sided debates with friends in the 1980’s where I was the only person who was convinced of Julian H Cope’s genius and everyone else telling me that Queen / Def Leppard, etc were much better…arrgghhh! There are many bands of my youth that I now think I championed that weren’t that great but I still feel Julian Cope is underrated and undervalued as a singer/songwriter…

  2. I read once that ‘Passionate Friend’ was written with reference to Julian’s romance with Ian McCulloch’s sister, and especially pissed him off and ruining what was left of any friendship. The trouble is, I can’t for the life of me remember where I read it so don’t quote me. I remember sticking this b-side on the jukebox occasionally to wind up punters.

  3. I was about to write in re Mac’s sister as well – pretty certain it was in the first vol of his autobiography

  4. Wilder is my favorite Teardrops album and the whole band is very much underrated. Cope / Teardrops ICA?

  5. Never heard this b-side but Passionate Friend is absolutely timeless.
    Echorich, were you standing 2 feet away from me at the band’s American debut at My Father’s Place in early ’81, when Cope lost his voice?

  6. JTFL…why, yes, yes I was…Funny story…and isn’t there always one…my dad was negotiating to buy MFP in 1980. The deal fell through…I was gutted that I couldn’t go around telling people that my father owned My Father’s Place! The next time I saw Teardrop Explodes would be at the Palladium opening for U2. Julian stole that show in my mind, even if Bono did climb all over the PA.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.