DID YOU KNOW?????…..

….that the single version of Oblivious is five seconds shorter than the version which opens up High Land, Hard Rain?

mp3: Aztec Camera – Oblivious (single version)

The difference is just after the two-minute mark. The lovely, almost flamenco style of guitar playing has an additional bar on the album version. Something I only picked up when I pulled out the 12″ copy of the single for the first time in years to have a listen on the new turntable.

mp3: Aztec Camera – Oblivious

The single, in its 7″, 12″ and its later re-released form (with a different sleeve) contains one of the greatest of Roddy Frame‘s love songs on the b-side

mp3: Aztec Camera – Orchid Girl

The other track wouldn’t have been out of place on the parent album either (and indeed, like Orchid Girl, was added when it was eventually issued on CD):-

mp3: Aztec Camera – Haywire

I will never tire of telling folk that Roddy Frame was just a few months past his 19th birthday when High Land, Hard Rain hit the shops in April 1983. It will always be very near the top of my all-time favourite albums by a Scottish singer or band – indeed there are days when I think it might well be my actual favourite.


14 thoughts on “DID YOU KNOW?????…..

  1. I think High Land Hard Rain is a thing of exceptional beauty.

    I can “exclusively reveal” that when a prominent, late night, Glasgow based DJ played tracks from the LP I was blown away.

    I’ve always believed there to be a maturity to this record considerably beyond Frame’s years both in terms of musicianship and lyricism.

    As Scottish LPs go it stands tall and proud. I’d have no issue with this LP being referred to as one of Scotland’s very best although, like JC, my favourite has a tendency to shift – but not far.

  2. I got the 7″ double pack single which had a couple of live tracks including – for me – the definitive version of We Could Send Letters. I love Orchid Girl and was delighted when I belatedly got the album to discover an ‘extended’ version of Oblivious. What an incredible songbook at the age of 19 and the quality didn’t drop thereafter.

  3. Roddy at the top of his game on all these tracks. Orchid Girl is a particular favourite of mine too. A hidden gem to be found on the b-side.

  4. Got the album for my 17th birthday in the May. It was rarely off the turntable that summer. Still play it frequently – although the vinyl version is now in retirement.

  5. Yeah, Flimflamfan, I can also exclusively reveal that I was introduced to AC by that same late night DJ playing the earlier Pillar To Post single. When this followed I knew this was an album I had to buy. It is a classic, and standalone release, you can actually hear Roddy already moving on from the “jangliness” of side 1 on tracks such as Back on Board on the 2nd side. Astonishingly mature for one so young….

    I am also a great fan of Orchid Girl. Just beautiful

  6. I’ve been compiling the first 150 or so Rough Trade singles, and recently discovered the difference between the “Oblivious” single and the LP version (a shameless plug here for jonderblog.)

    Also read somewhere that “Orchid Girl” was written as a tribute to labelmates Blue Orchids (and perhaps Una Baines in particular, just as Comet Gain named a song for her). Roddy later covered the Blue Orchids song “Bad Education”.

  7. Not tryna start an argument or anything, but I don’t think Roddy ever recorded a song as perfect as ‘Oblivious’.

  8. One of many fabulous debut albums by Scottish bands, still very much a favourite.
    Just as Garlands by Cocteau Twins which happens to celebrate 38 years this very day, and spinning on my turntable this very moment.

  9. Congrats on the new turntable… may you uncover more gems. Also want to highlight the beautiful cover art of the early LPs and EPs…

  10. The Boy Wonders was almost the name of my blog. The passion in all of the songs on High Land High Rain is a large part of what makes the album so timeless and classic.

  11. HLHR is in my top 10. And I had a serious crush on Roddy F back when I was a 17 year old.

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