Another “Christmas” record which has nothing to do with Christmas, and wasn’t even released for Christmas. It actually came out in August – so brilliant timing for the back-to-school market. I’m sure all the primary kids were getting down to this. Jim and William Reid of The Jesus And Mary Chain basically overdub a load of feedback-y guitars to The Sugarcubes‘ signature song, so in theory, it’s two of the greatest alternative groups of the late 80s on one record, but… they’re better separately.
Still, it is Christmas… this time…
Link: The Sugarcubes – Birthday (Christmas Mixes) (password: salad)
- Birthday (Christmas Eve)
- Birthday (Christmas Day)
- Birthday (Christmas Present)
- Petrol (Live)
“Mummie Don’t” was the product of Jimmy Cauty‘s collaboration with Alex Paterson as the first incarnation of The Orb, circa 1988, and I suppose that had they released it at the time, it probably wouldn’t have become the stadium house megahit that The KLF ultimately turned it into. Or alternatively, if Cauty had pushed it in that direction with The Orb, then The Orb’s musical development might have taken a quite different path. Oh, so many “what if”s. What actually happened was that the first official version emerged as a KLF single in May 1989, and the original “Mummie Don’t” remained unheard until its inclusion on The Orb’s 2005 out-takes collection, Orbsessions Volume One. And in between there was that hit version. Which I’m not sharing today, nyah nyah.
Link: The Orb – Mummie Don’t
And here for comparison is the version that The KLF released as a single in 1989…
After making a big deal of their 1986 breakup, four out of the seven original members of Madness (Graham McPherson, Cathal Smyth, Lee Thompson and Chris Foreman) promptly got back together, made a tiny change to their name, and released this self-titled 1988 album. It pretty much carries on from where “Mad Not Mad” left off, which may not be considered a good thing, considering that MNM is generally disliked for its over-reliance on synths and drum machines. Those remain very much in evidence here, and the trend away from the “nuttiness” that made them famous is also marked. Lead vocals are split almost equally between McPherson and Smyth.
Link: The Madness – The Madness (password: salad)
It’s the usual thing, but this time with four in a row… from jangly 70s blues-pop to piano-led 70s blues-rock to 80s indie rock (with very dated Mel & Kim reference) to 2000s (but only just) gloomy indie rock.
Dipping into my shoebox of backup discs again, I pick out one dedicated to acts beginning with S, V and Y. They just happened to combine to make the right sort of total to fill a DVD-R.
The S folder contains a subfolder called “1980s”. It contains tracks from the 1980s. Given my haphazard filing system, this is not as obvious as it should be. Here are some tracks retrieved from that subfolder and its subsubfolders, all 12″ mixes.
Later reworked by Beats International as “Dub Be Good To Me” and Professor Green as “Just Be Good To Green”, but the original doesn’t get much of an airing anymore.
I know, Bronski Beat doesn’t start with S. It’s in a folder of various works by Jimmy Somerville. I think by now you should be starting to understand why I can never find the backup I actually want.
More Marc Almond, this time in an early Soft Cell classic. Strange to think this was never a hit, when it’s probably better remembered than bona fide smashes like “What” and “Torch”.
The much-vaunted, little-purchased Stock Aitken Waterman collaboration. The only way this could be more eighties would be to have Selina Scott introducing it.
Because Sigue Sigue Sputnik just aren’t uncool enough.