SWC, who as part of the Devon & Cornwall constabulary, has been just a tad occupied with the recent G7 summit that was held on his patch last week. But he’s back……….
Did you miss me? Sorry for the radio silence, I’ve been a bit busy. Anyway, where was I, Oh Yes, Aphex Twin records, that’s were I left everything. Well that was sort of the last record I was going to talk about but….then I decided to move Badgers records from the boxes and into my vinyl cupboard, which was not an easy task I’ll tell you. I had to make space and now much to the annoyance of Mrs SWC, I’ve got a big pile of records sat in the bottom of my wardrobe behind the picture of Sennen Cove I’ve been meaning to put up in the lounge for years.
Still, there I was lovingly putting all these records in alphabetical (and chronological) order in small piles. I am somewhat surrounded by records, it is a lovely feeling, I have a cup of tea close at hand, a small plate of biscuits and the digital radio (BBC Radio 6 Music) has just played this:-
Real Estate – Talking Backwards
I am quite content.
It then dawns on me – that once again, save for the obvious letters of Q, X, Y and Z, Badger has given me at least one piece of vinyl for every letter of the alphabet, and with that a little lightbulb sparks above my head. It turns out I have leant against the switch whilst I was casually the reading the label notes for ‘Mixed Up’ by The Cure.
I did also have an idea. The next few pieces in this series will be in alphabetical order (rather like the Charity Shop CD bit – more of that later) – some will be bunched together to avoid you having to read at least 22 pieces of this nonsense. Oh, and massive apologies well in advance, the only band starting with U was U2, ‘Pop’ era U2 at that, so that means Bono at his most pompous wraparound shades wearing worst I’m afraid. You have my permission to pretend your internet was broken all week on that day.
Let’s start with something a little bit brilliant (we’ll get progressively shitter as the weeks go on) and a band who did their own A to Z tour of the UK a few years back.
A is for ASH
Trailer (Infectious Records, 1994)
According to legend (or Wikipedia, whichever you like), Ash were called Ash because back in 1992 the band decided that if they were going to be taken seriously as a band, then being an Iron Maiden covers band called ‘Vietnam’ wasn’t a good enough. One of the band, probably the drummer, because, well its always the drummer, as we know, picked up a dictionary and starting with A they flicked through until they came across word that they all liked…talking of legends….
“There is a cave at the bottom of Tregarra Head where a mermaid lives…” is how the story told by an old fisherman who sits at the back drinking his ale from a jug, starts (if you went to the right pub that is). His purpose in life is to pass on information, stories, and tales. If you pay him in pints of Doom Bar he will regale you with a yarn from about the mermaid who lived in a cave below the mining village of Zennor.
He used to that is until 2009.
You will note I said until 2009, why..? Well because in 2009 a new Cornish legend was born, one that replaced the old, slightly creepy and probably not true story of the mermaid who lived in a cave below the mining village of Zennor. A story told by, let’s be honest, a man who should probably get a real job and seek help for his obvious and depressing descent into alcoholism.
The new legend was born towards the end of November 2009, when a band called Ash played the final gig of their aforementioned A to Z tour in the Village Hall at Zennor to a crowd of 70, why only 70? Well, because that’s the capacity.
Now when you stagger into the local pub in that tiny Cornish village and go up to the gnarly looking old guy in the corner with the chunky sweater and the yellow trousers and casually put down his pint of Doom. The fisherman will look at you and then rip off his chunky sweater to reveal an original ‘1977’ tour t shirt, he will then jump up on the bar and shout,
“Twas a cold November evening when lights dimmed in Zennor Village Hall and not a whisper could be heard until a voice shouted into the darkness “Hey, We’re fucking Ash and this is called ‘Kung Fu’”….
Here are three tracks from ‘Trailer’ all of which are excellent, and three of the reasons why Ash were so good back in the mid-nineties, of course you should have them:-
Jack Names The Planets
There were a couple of other records in the ‘A’ Pile that were worthy of your attention, there was this:-
Alabama 3 – Speed of the Sound of Loneliness
which is all kinds of funky brilliance and way better than the original.
Audioweb – Sleeper
who Badger saw live in a BBC Studio once on the Jools Holland smug fest that is ‘Hootenanny’.