Bad Cover Versions, Marc E. Smith in 2027, A Comparison between Arcade Fire and David Brent and the Best Thing to Come Out of Halifax since John Noakes

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Few moments in the history of pop music can rival the absolute grandeur of Scott Walker’s baritone soaring over the impeccable orchestrations of tracks like Mrs Murphy or Montague Terrace (In Blue). Utterly sublime, dontcha think?

Maybe best of all is the macabre MOR of Plastic Palace People, which somehow managed to be a damn sight more trippy than 99% of the psychedelia going around at the time of its release; distinctly uneasy listening I would guess for a majority of the mainstream audiences that might tune into the BBC’s Saturday night variety show Scott but were more likely to enjoy a bit of Engelbert to Noel Scott Engel.

So did Jarvis Cocker’s take on the song impress last Friday during the Scott Walker Proms tribute on BBC 4 at the Albert Hall, fanboy karaoke or inventive reinterpretation?

Answer: fanboy karaoke and verging on the cringeworthy too.

The others on the bill, John Grant, Susanne Sundfør and Richard Hawley were better but none really took Walker’s simple advice beforehand to ‘try to approach it in a new way.’ Like Scott’s take on a bunch of Jacques Brel tracks. Or for that matter Alex Harvey’s version of Next.

Terrible though Jarvis was I won’t let it put me off His n’ Hers, or for that matter, the Scott Walker produced We Love Life – which, of course contained a track titled Bad Cover Version with a dig at Scott’s ‘Til The Band Comes In.


I seriously think Mark. E Smith would have been a better choice to tackle a Scott masterpiece as he really does possess the effortless knack of approaching cover versions in a new way whether it’s Sister Sledge, R. Dean Taylor or The Move.

My plan this week was to hopefully feature something from New Facts Emerge but none of the tracks have any accompanying videos and, more importantly, none of them are anywhere near as good as best work of the band.

It’s almost unthinkable – well to me anyway – but The Fall have been on something of a downward spiral for the ten years since Reformation Post TLC and the departure from the band of Smith’s missis Eleni Poulou clearly hasn’t helped matters.

In another ten year’s time Smith will still be The Fall and on his latest album there will no no music as such. It will consist solely of one long piece where the singer rants incoherently about conspiracy theories; growls; coughs up his guts and cackles insanely at something which will never become clear. It’ll also likely make Couples vs Jobless Mid 30s from New Facts sound commercial, which is saying something.

I’ll still likely be daft enough to buy a copy though.

Instead of The Fall, here’s some Arcade Fire.

Their new album Everything Now was produced by the band themselves, along with Daft Punk‘s Thomas Bangalter and Jarvis Cocker’s old Pulp mucker Steve Mackey, with co-production coming from Markus Dravs. Recorded at a number of studios including Boombox in New Orleans, the album has divided opinion. Big style.

The Independent and NME both rate Everything Now 5/5, while the 405’s reviewer reckons it’s ‘horrendously misjudged, with songs that are not just boring but actively unlikeable’ and ‘a compositional mess, somehow both gratuitously moralising and morally repugnant, duller than watching already-dry paint.’ That’ll be a 2/10 which begs the question how rank rotten would this reviewer judge an album to be before he hands out a 1.

I’m finding Everything Now very uneven as a whole (although I do prefer it to their Springsteen influenced second album) and can’t work out they failed to include I Give You Power (ft. Mavis Staples) their single from earlier in the year but thought it was a good idea to accommodate Chemistry, a track that could have been part of David Brent’s set on Life on the Road.

I do, though, adore the title track and it’s two shorter variants – Everything_Now (Continued) and Everything Now (Continued). When I first heard it I thought of everything from You’re Just To Good To Be True and the piano on Dancing Queen through to girls on holiday dancing round handbags and Peruvian buskers on Argyle Street, which can’t be a bad thing – and few songs with such downbeat lyrics have ever felt so joyous, have they?


Singer Win Butler has been railing over the past few days about criticism of the album, particularly of his ‘rapping’ on Signs Of Life. He denies he was even attempting to rap and is utterly pissed off.

So now he knows how some fans feel when his band issue dress codes for their shows, ticket holders for some recent gigs being requested to refrain from wearing ‘shorts, large logos, flip flops, tank tops, crop tops, baseball hats, solid white or red clothing,’ while also warning, ‘We reserve the right to deny entry to anyone dressed inappropriately.’

Fuck that for a caper.

Although, to be fair, they might be on to something by banning baseball caps. And flip flops too come to think of it.

Arcade Fire have just announced some dates for Spring 2018, including a date at Glasgow’s Hydro.

For more on the band: https://www.facebook.com/arcadefire/

The Orielles are a newish indie act from the good town of Halifax – let’s not hold the fact that it’s the birthplace of Ed Sheeran against it.

The band feature a couple of sisters, Esmé Dee Hand Halford (bass & vocals) and Sidonie B Halford (drums) together with their pal Henry Carlyle Wade (guitar & vocals).

Signed to Heavenly, the band like Sonic Youth and Steely Dan, Pavement and The Pastels – and they’re absolutely chuffed that Stephen Pastel is now following them on Twitter. They also cite Quentin Tarantino as an influence.

Filmed while they toured Britain back in April, this is their new single I Only Bought It For The Bottle and very good it is too, in fact, I think they’re the best thing to come out of Halifax since John Noakes. Maybe better!


For more on The Orielles: https://www.facebook.com/theorielles/

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Supersonic & Wonderwall (Friday Night Film Club #2)

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Oasis: Supersonic (2016) Director: Mat Whitecross
Wonderwall (1968) Director: Joe Massot 

Supersonic Wonderwall

Over the past coupla weeks I’ve watched two documentaries about filmmaking.

One, Hitchcock/Truffaut, examined the French auteur’s book on the master of suspense with Martin Scorsese, Peter Bogdanovich, Wes Anderson and others analysing Hitchcock’s techniques and legacy.

The other documentary was Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films, which traced the careers of the men behind the company that specialised in bandwagon jumping movies about ninjas, break dancers and ludicrous all action affairs that usually starred Chuck Norris getting busy with a bazooka. Talking heads here included Bo Derek and Molly Ringwald.

I’m a big fan of Hitchcock and own many of his films on DVD. I also have a number of Trauffaut’s films in my collection and a quad poster for Jules at Jim hangs on my living room wall. I own nothing from the Cannon, em, canon. Albeit I confess I have enjoyed some of their output, the Ninja Trilogy and Runaway Train springing to mind.

You’ve likely guessed that I actually preferred Electric Boogaloo, although I would recommend you to see both.

I mention this to explain that while I’m not a fan, I thought I’d take a chance on Oasis: Supersonic when I came across it in a local charity shop earlier this week.


Supersonic traces the career of Oasis from the childhood of the Gallagher’s through to the Knebworth enormo-shows in the summer of 1996, thus avoiding the far from engrossing years following the fiasco of Be Here Now.

In many ways the most interesting aspect of the film is seeing the pre-fame days of Noel and Liam growing up in Burnage, a world of guitars and Greggs, marijuana and Man City.

‘We’re just lads from a council estate,’ Noel explains. ‘Two brothers. Headcases.’

Luckily the two headcases possessed a pair of traits that helped make them stand out: real self-belief and gargantuan ambition. And Noel was blessed with the capacity to come up with songs that were equal parts pop anthem and terrace chant.

‘I want the severed head of Phil Collins in my fridge by the end of the decade,’ a young Noel declares. ‘And if I haven’t, I’ll be a failure.’

To cut a potentially long review short, I found Supersonic only moderately engaging but the older Gallagher brother does repeatedly demonstrate his ability to conjure up a memorable quote.

A meat and two veg documentary on a meat and two veg band.

Wonderwall Tea Break title card

And now for the film that gave Oasis the title for their 1995 single Wonderwall.

Can you imagine the reaction of the team behind the film when they discovered that one of Britain’s biggest ever bands had decided to name their new single – certain to sell shedloads of copies – after their long neglected film?

I’m guessing some fist pumps and a very loud ‘Oh yeeeeesssssssss’.

Featuring a score supplied by George Harrison (and some friends) and made at a point when relations within The Beatles were more frosty than fab, Wonderwall tells the story of Oscar Collins (Jack MacGowran), a middle-aged scientist who is about to get a glimpse into the world of the beautiful people.

The professor lives in a cramped flat in West London. He looks perpetually puzzled by the world and is single, socially inept and staggeringly absent-minded – when he attempts to steep his feet in a bucket of warm water he forgets to take off his socks.

While analysing some scientific data he’s disturbed by some very loud Indian style Raga music. Through a peephole in a huge Pre-Raphaelite inspired canvas in his living room he sneaks a glance into the room next door and sees for the first time his new neighbour, a young woman clad in the latest Carnaby Street fashions who looks like the epitome of the Swinging London chick. This is Penny Lane (oh dear!) played by Jane Birkin.

This proves to be the start of an obsession for Oscar.

Soon he’s tearing out the painting, easing out bricks and drilling holes to get a better gander – and don’t ask why she doesn’t seem to notice any of this.

Next door is a different, very exotic world. Hip, happening and very definitely Hippy with a capital H, Penny’s pad is a vibrant pop art palace decorated in hand painted psychedelic art drenched in acidic primary colours.

Here Penny, a model, takes part in photoshoots and holds far out parties with her pals in some groovy fashions, some of the men’s outfits resembling the kind of kit favoured by Austin Powers.

Wonderwall, Jane Birkin

Oscar begins imagining some elaborate fantasies involving Penny. He stops going into work and rips his phone off the hook. When a work colleague visits to see if he’s okay, Oscar chides his behaviour as ‘Very strange indeed’. Which could act as a shorthand description of Wonderwall although another line of dialogue, when Penny’s boyfriend discusses his relationship and claims ‘It’s a drag,’ could again serve as an equally succinct way to sum up the film.

This is a pity as there was a lot of talent involved in its making. Apart from Harrison, there’s Jane Birkin who soon teamed up with Serge Gainsbourg; Jack MacGowran, a legend of Dublin’s Abbey Theatre who was later cast in The Exorcist; while the writers both had great pedigrees (Gérard Brach who devised the story often collaborated with Roman Polanski and penned the screenplay for The Name of the Rose while the screenwriter Guillermo Cabrera Infante co-wrote the script for 1971’s Vanishing Point under the pseudonym Guillermo Caín).

Then there’s The Fool, the design collective that forged a close working connection with The Beatles, most famously creating the three-story mural painted on the façade of the Beatles’ Apple Boutique on the corner of Baker Street. I was very impressed by their set designs, costumes and title cards which are easily the best thing about Wonderwall.

The film seems to have been put together with a hippy dippy, go with the flow attitude.

Structure and character arcs? Those are for straights, man!

The comedy also generally backfires and the music only intermittently excels. Oh and if you want to see this purely on account of Anita Pallenberg, then don’t bother, you might blink at the wrong time and miss her.

The main problem, though, is the fact that while seemingly innocent and definitely eccentric, it’s impossible for audiences to ignore the professor’s voyeurism – which at no time does he even question, let alone feel any guilt over.

Equal parts psychedelia, surrealism and Goonish absurdism, Wonderwall might be classified as a cult film but it’s nowhere near a cult classic.

Although Liam Gallagher might disagree.

It’s maybe worth a watch as a curiosity, a glimpse of the country in the immediate wake of the Summer of Love but I wouldn’t recommend anybody seek it out unless they are big George Harrison fans.

For a better film about Peeping Toms try, well, Peeping Tom, while for a better Swinging London film try Blow Up (which Birkin also appeared in).

If I haven’t completely put you off, here’s the trailer:


The accompanying soundtrack album, Wonderwall Music, became the first solo album by a Beatle and also the first release on Apple Records.

And here’s a little taster from it:

The Return of Alvvays (with added Plum)

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YouTube has been known to provide me some strange suggestions on subjects I might like. Tonight, though, it was spot-on, alerting me that a new video is out today for the new Alvvays single In Undertow, the first taster for their upcoming album Antisocialtes album.

It’s alvvays good to get some new Alvvays, so here is the new video:

 
According to singer Molly Rankin: ‘This record is a fantasy breakup arc and my life nearly imitated art.’

If In Undertow is any indication of its quality then this looks like a must-buy album.

Since I first wrote about the band, Alvvays have went from strength to strength, even reaching the dizzy heights of having previous single Marry Me, Archie chosen as Song of the Day on Radio Scotland’s Off the Ball (Okay, if you’re not Scottish I am being slightly ironic here).

They have though played Coachella and toured North and South America and Australia and New Zealand, headlining shows and supporting the likes of The Jesus and Mary Chain, Courtney Barnett, Chvrches and Tame Impala.

Alvvays have also recently announced a new tour that will take in Britain including, as the keen-eyed among you will see, a date on 27. August at St. Luke’s in Glasgow, a venue that sounds ideal for the band. I hope to be there.

Alvvays Tour Dates 2017.jpg

Also out soon is Plum by Wand, an act that I really don’t know much about apart from the fact that Cory Hanson is their singer and guitarist – and here I would like to point out that since I somehow failed to include Hanson’s single Garden of Delight in my Best Of 2017 list, my head has largely been hung in shame.

Wand will also be coming to Glasgow in the not too distant future with a G2 date in January 2018.

Here is Plum:


For more on Alvvays click here and more more on Wand here you go.

Supernature & A Track from Seventh Tree

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Cerrone: Supernature (Atlantic)

7-by-7-1977-logo-2016

Musician, composer and producer, Jean-Marc Cerrone is the man behind Supernature. He recorded his first LP, Love In C Minor, in 1976, creating one of the most influential French disco albums in the process, Blues & Soul magazine describing it as ‘Euro-disco at its very best’. It might have been at the time but a year later he surpassed it with his Cerrone III: Supernature album, an edit of the title track going on to became a top ten hit in Britain in 1978.

Around this time some critics began referring to Jean-Marc as the ‘French Giorgio Moroder’ and while I wouldn’t say he was quite of that calibre I can see why the comparisons might be made – and while I’m at it I’ve always thought that Daft Punk’s Giorgio by Moroder sounded a lot like Supernature than any track that the Italian producer has ever been involved in.

Compare and contrast, folks:

 
 
The track was also apparently used as the theme tune on The Kenny Everett Video Show, something I have no recollection of ever watching having a deep dislike of the host.

The other main trivia point about the song is the fact that the lyrics were penned by a young Lene Lovich, who prior to being signed up by Stiff had been busking, providing screams to be dubbed onto horror movies, playing in a funk band and – well according to one site anyway – working as a go-go dancer on Radio One, although what the job description of a radio station go-go dancer might entail is frankly beyond me.

When the Supernature album came out in 1977 though she failed to receive a writing credit – her contribution only being finally recognised when a remix of the song was released in the mid ’80s.

Supernature_'86

Goldfrapp also recorded an album called Supernature and included a track titled Cologne Cerrone Houdini on Seventh Tree.

What yer man Cerrone has to do with this track is also beyond me but I would guess it was just the first word that Alison Goldfrapp thought of that rhymes with Cologne. Well, it certainly beats crone, groan or loan.

I do kinda like clone myself though albeit Cologne Clone Houdini would definitely be a bit of a tongue twister, especially live.

Anyway, here is Cologne Cerrone Houdini:


For more on Cerrone click here.

For more on Goldfrapp, here you go.

‘They’re not very good, and they know that, right?’ (A 20th Century Women Two for Tuesday)

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20th Century Women quad poster

I recently watched 20th Century Women, a poignant film set in California at the tail-end of the 1970s. I would definitely recommend it as it’s beautifully written and directed by Mike Mills – the man behind videos for everyone from Yoko Ono to Air, who even named a song after him on Talkie Walkie. There’s also a great ensemble cast that includes Annette Bening, Elle Fanning (The Neon Demon), Billy Crudup (Alien: Covenant) and Greta Gerwig, once dubbed ‘the Meryl Streep of Mumblecore’ although Gerwig has appeared in a lot more good films than Streep has managed in recent years.

Come to think of it so have Bening, Fanning and Crudup.

Bening is particularly strong here as Dorothea, obsessively overanalyzing everything and obsessively smoking too – to the extent that Don Draper might even believe she should cut down. She’s sarcastic but supportive; anti-authoritarian but keen to daily check her stocks and shares. She owns a sprawling and messy house that sometimes resembles a mini commune – she has given a home to budding photographer Abbie, who is fighting cervical cancer and who dyed her hair red after seeing The Man Who Fell to Earth, William a hippy handyman and, at nights, Julie, who Dorothea’s fifteen year old son Jamie fixates on.

Together these five central characters form a kind of makeshift family.

Dorothea gave birth to Jamie (Lucas Jade Zumann) late in life and as he likes to points out ‘she was raised during the depression’ as if this was an entirely different world.

As ancient as she is, though, Dorothea retains an open mind and investigates a punkish local club and evaluates her feelings about bands like The Raincoats. She attempts to make sense of young people and the ways they have changed since she was a girl although Jamie, Julie and Abbie often remain a mystery to her – just as I don’t get teenagers of today getting excited about a ringtone or the latest Xbox release – she’s 55 (the age I am now) in 1979, while the Julie character is seventeen (the age I was then).

Here are her thoughts on hearing The Raincoats for the first time:

Dorothea: They’re not very good, and they know that, right?

Abbie: Yeah, it’s like they’ve got this feeling, and they don’t have any skill, and they don’t want skill, because it’s really interesting what happens when your passion is bigger than the tools you have to deal with it. It creates this energy that’s raw. Isn’t it great?’

Actually one of the things I think I like about The Raincoats is the clash within their ranks of the musically accomplished (violinist Vicky Aspinall had been playing since she was five and had a classical training) with the intuitive (the rest of the band).

The Raincoats have always been a band that people tend to love or hate. Danny Baker utterly slated them after seeing them play live early in their career; Kurt Cobain adored them and when, in late 1993, the band’s three studio albums were re-released, he happily agreed to supply some liner notes.

Like The Raincoats, 20th Century Women also split opinions. In the Guardian, Peter Bradshaw described it as ‘exasperatingly supercilious and smug – unfocused, self-consciously cute, nostalgic and empathetic, but never properly funny’.

Ouch.

Bradshaw isn’t a fan of anything indie and quirky and I while I struggle myself with uber kooky efforts like Napoleon Dynamite and Eagle vs Shark, I obviously found the film far more enjoyable than he did and while Bradshaw detested the stills, intertitles and archive footage that punctuate the movie I thought their use was often inspired. We see stills of Debbie Harry and Humphrey Bogart, typographic quotes from Judy Blume and Susan Lydon, we see Jimmy Carter’s Crisis of Confidence speech and even a little sequence from Koyaanisqatsi.

There are also multiple-narrative voiceovers, usually rotating between mother and son but with each of the five main characters contributing.

From the spring of 1979 and released (almost inevitably) on Rough Trade, this is The Raincoats and Fairytale In The Supermarket:


Just like a recent and similarly themed film, 2015’s Diary of a Teenage Girl, this has a fantastic soundtrack. No Television, T.Rex or the Dwight Twilley Band but Neu! and Suicide, Siouxsie and The Banshees and The Buzzcocks. I never could have guessed that Why Can’t I Touch It? would play over the end credits of a film nominated for two Golden Globes and an Oscar.

Amazingly enough Roger Neill’s score – utilising early synths of the period with a Sequential Circuits Prophet-5 synthesizer to the fore – failed to garner even a nod from the Academy. Slant even went as far as to decry it as ‘ambient music of the yoga-clinic waiting-room variety’.

Me? I reckon it is one of the very best scores I have heard since the end of the 20th century – yeah, that good, full with the kind of wonderful ambient washes that Eno can only dream about nowadays.

And speaking of Brian Eno, here’s another track from the soundtrack, co-written by Bowie, Eno and Carlos Alomar. If The Raincoats split opinions, Bowie as much as just about any artist living or dead unites the musical tastes of Joe Public. Here he is with DJ from his 1979 album Lodger:


For more on The Raincoats, click here.

A Shel Talmy Two for Tuesday

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Ace Record’s Producer anthologies are always worth investigating – previous compilations have included Jack Nitzsche, Kim Fowley and Shadow Morton – and this week I picked up the latest instalment in the series, Making Time, which features the work of Shel Talmy.

Shel Talmy cover

Shel is certainly a fascinating guy. He worked closely with The Kinks, The Who and The Creation and he also briefly crossed paths in the studio with the young David Bowie (when he was still Davy Jones), Lemmy when he was a Rockin’ Vicar and Jimmy Page when he was a humble session guitarist. He recorded Lee Hazlewood – oh how I wish I could sing like Lee – and also Goldie & the Gingerbreads, who it is claimed were the first all-female rock band to be signed by a major record label – and whose Spectoresque mini-masterpiece titled That’s Why I Love You is one of many highlights here.

Making Time features all these artists as well as some fascinating music by acts that have only ever featured at best peripherally on my radar: Belfast’s Perpetual Langley, and Oliver Norman, whose Drowning in My Own Despair is the best The Four Tops rip-off you will ever hear and then there’s The Rokes, who I’ve just discovered were a bunch of English expatriates who became one of the biggest bands in Italy during the mid ’60s.

The only drawbacks for me is the inclusion of an schmaltzy track by Chad and Jeremy while his production job for The Damned, Stretcher Case Baby, fails to make an appearance.

Here’s something special by one of England’s most under-rated bands of the 1960s. Originally released on Talmy’s Planet Records, this is The Creation and the track that gives the new compilation its name:

 
When Sheldon S. Talmy first arrived in London in 1962, it’s highly unlikely that it would have been described as swinging this being the Britain of Harold Macmillan, heavy smogs and kitchen sink dramas but the American liked the town anyway and in order to extend his stay he hatched a money-making plan, setting up a meeting with Dick Rowe at his Decca office.

Talmy by all accounts was not a man whose motto in life was necessarily ‘honesty is the best policy’. He did possess some experience of working as a recording engineer in L.A. but exaggerated this to the point where he had actually produced a number of records, The Beach Boys’ Surfin’ Safari being maybe the most notable example.

Rowe gave the songs a spin and liked what he heard. Shel landed a job but there was a downside. His first assignment was cutting a single for terminally unhip Dublin act The Bachelors – the track Charmaine was a top ten hit though and Talmy was given the choice of more credible bands.

Within a couple of years he had become synonymous with edgy mod combos playing razor sharp pop with guitar pyrotechnics, the kind of thing that’s usually referred to as freakbeat nowadays.

Talmy certainly captured the blazing crash-bang-wallop of these new acts with a rarely matched panache but, before the end of the decade, he had also succeeded with folk rock in the shape of Roy Harper and The Pentangle and soul in the shape of the aforementioned Perpetual Langley and Oliver Norman.

This, though, is one of Talmy’s purest excursions into commerciality, a wonderful slice of poignant pop which I’d mistakenly thought was called Semi-Detached Suburban Mr. Jones. Extensive research though – thanks, Wiki – tells me that this was indeed the original title given to the song although a modification was made when it occurred to the Manfreds that their recently departed vocalist Paul Jones (who had only just been replaced by Mike D’Abo) might suspect that the song was some kind of dig at him.

From 1966, here’s the first big British hit record to feature a mellotron. This is Manfred Mann and Semi-Detached Suburban Mr. James:

It was 50 Years Ago Today

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Sgt Rutters

Exceptional bands often possess a history that is almost as intriguing as their music. Take The Sex Pistols: hooking up with Malcolm McLaren; swearing live on TV and making front page news; getting the heave-ho from EMI and later A&M; banned shows; God Save the Queen being denied official number one status; breaking up in America at the climax of a tour and the sad demise of Nancy Spungen and then Sid Vicious. All that in just a few years.

Compare that to the story of Coldplay where the most interest generated was a celebrity wedding to an over-rated actress.

Imagine trying to write a page turning book or make a gripping film about that lot.

The history of The Beatles was consistently fascinating: their residency at the Star Club in Hamburg; the infamous rejection from Decca; their first Ed Sullivan Show appearance; Beatlemania and Shea Stadium; MBEs and LSD; John Lennon’s ‘more popular than Jesus’ controversy; the death of their manager Brian Epstein and the retreat from playing live until the Apple rooftop concert – these are all just off the top of my head.

Likewise The Rutles stand firmly in the bands with an exceptionally engrossing history camp. And that history does parallel The Beatles to a spookily bizarre extent: just think of their Ratkellar residency in Hamburg; mass adulation in the shape of Rutlemania; their concert at Che Stadium; Nasty’s bigger than God controversy (when sales boomed as devout Christians bought their records just so they could burn them); the weekend near Bogner in the company of Surrey mystic Arthur Sultan and the Stig is dead rumours.

Released fifty years to the day, their phenomenally successful album Sgt. Rutter’s Lonely Darts Club Band undoubtedly had a seismic influence on music and popular culture and remains for many their high point. From it, this is the closing track, the achingly sad Cheese and Onions:

 
You remember the very awkward date between gangster’s moll Mia Wallace and hitman Vincent Vega in Pulp Fiction? Mia telling him that: ‘There are only two kinds of people in the world, Beatles people and Elvis people. Now Beatles people can like Elvis and Elvis people can like the Beatles, but nobody likes them both equally.’

If the choice was between Beatles and Rutles people, I could claim that I’m actually more a Rutles man myself but claiming to prefer a spoof act (however talented) to the band that gave the world A Day in the Life, Revolution and Helter Skelter would border on striving to become the Katie Hopkins of musical opinions – even if I am happy to acknowledge that The Beatles also gave the world a number of rank rotten ditties like Rocky Raccoon, Wild Honey Pie and Ob-La-Fucking Di, Ob-La-Fucking Da.

I may well, though, honestly prefer The Rutles to Oasis.

From their Tragical History Tour, this is Piggy in the Middle:


Oh, I’ve just remembered something else about Coldplay which might be at least of some interest (and which you likely already know yourselves). Chris Martin once invited David Bowie to collaborate on a track that Coldplay felt would be perfect for the Godlike genius to contribute backing vocals to.

Bowie gave them a knockback, explaining: ‘It’s not a very good song, is it?’

For more on The Rutles, click here.

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