Singles Night

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So here I am after a day spent renovating/decorating our bathroom – a whole morning bleaching/cleaning down all the tiles and grouting and an afternoon/early evening redoing all the gloss – so basically fume city all day.  I hate bleach, the way it looks, the way it smells and what it can do scares me – I should have had the nous to save my review of Nirvana Bleach until today.  Ah well.

Anyhow several glasses of good red wine later, I find myself sitting here after family have shuffled off to bed, happily spinning some singles and feeling tipsy and content*.  You’ll be shocked to know (not) that I used to buy loads of singles, sometimes from bands I knew, loved and collected, other times just to try out bands I’d heard of, quite often I’d pick up anything with swearing in the title** and a lot of the time, pretty much at random if they happened to catch my eye; after all 7″ s were cheap enough.  Out of the very latter, there’s a few bands I got into and bought other singles/LPs from – the whole point of singles as far as record companies were concerned, but there again there are quite a few interesting ones I’ve got where I really liked the single, but just never took it any further.  Bit of a one night stand you might say.

So here are a couple of those, I’ve resisted the urge to Google – after all if I haven’t by now, why bother? it doesn’t do to spy on your exes.

One I listen to a lot because it’s on my ‘Jog, piggy! Jog!’ exercise playlist is, We Rock Like Girls Don’t I Just Want To Stick My Head In The Bass Drum.  A great title from a really well-named band.  They’re an all female outfit and I have a very, very vague recollection that they were from Scotland, but that’s it.  I purchased this sucker on 21 April 2005 and was just blown away straight away.  Let’s state the sodding obvious, this rocks! They have an excellent crunching guitar sound and there’s a great pop tune hidden away in all the noise, excellently produced by Mark Freegard.  It’s a great hymn to the visceral power of volume, noise and, umm, volume again – oh and certain other rudeness.

I just wanna stick my head in the bass drum

I just wanna feel it thumping and then some

I just wanna kiss you hard until you come

Not terribly Jane Austen is it?

Next up was one I sought out because it was a pop punk classic, I snagged a pretty ropey copy of The Leyton Buzzards Saturday Night Beneath The Plastic Palm Trees, a mere 18 years after it came out in August 2007.  As the brilliant cover suggests it’s a wry look at your first few forays into crappy nightclubs and the rituals and dangers surrounding it all.  The music is a slightly reggae-tinted punk-pop and this is one of those perfect punk single snapshots^ of life, the title says it all really.  I love the line about bouncers,

Sling him out he’s wearing boots
Cry the gangsters dressed in dinner suits
They black his eyes his nose gets bent
Courtesy of the management
The final verse is all about being turned down by a girl, being sick on your way home, getting soaked in the rain and knowing you’ll be straight back there next Saturday.  The B-side ‘Through With You’ is a real ’79 punk charger.  Seek it out, this one makes me very happy indeed.
Last up tonight is from February 2006, the band are Dustin’s Bar Mitzvah and the single is To The Ramones and I snapped it up solely because of the title and the cover.  Again I hit pay dirt here, the song is an absolutely excellent, three minutes of bitter three chord adrenalin.  In short – singer goes to girlfriends’ place, gets caught in the rain on the way, only for her to dump him because she thought it would be better to do it to his face, he listens but all he wants to do is to get home and listen to the Ramones.  I feel it.
I can’t wait to get home and listen to the Ramones
Lie down on my bed and
get your voice out of my head

I rather like the video, reminds me somewhat of the Guns ‘n Roses Use Your Illusion trilogy, except filmed on a bit of a tighter budget, at a car boot sale.

There’s loads of great stuff hidden away among my singles, I need to get around to counting and cataloguing them properly some day.  I am particularly taken by these one-shot affairs though, they’re just little capsules of excellence entirely unrelated to anything else in my universe and my universe is all the better for it.

400 Down (still).

*probably the killer combination of fumes and Rioja.

**actually a pretty damn accurate way of finding new stuff I liked.

^like The Cortinas Fascist Dictator – possibly my fave punk single ever.


10 thoughts on “Singles Night

  1. An ode to some 7″ love… wait, that’s a different site all together, isn’t it…

    Shopping by swearing in the titles and band names is a GREAT way to go about it. Well done.

    Man I wish I lived in a town that had a decent record store.

    Well done, thanks!

    1. Definitely not this site …

      The swearing thing really works for me – it’s just a mark of how immature I am. Sadly, this was in the days when mainstream stores carried singles – all gone now. We do have a great record shop in Liverpool but the 7″s they have are all cool, collectible ones – I used to like trawling all the uncool, mainstream ones too.

      Thanks mate!

    1. That’s not a ‘sadly’ thing at all – that’s an occasion to give thanks. It’s just a perfect track, up there with The Boys ‘First Time’

  2. I was 17, one of the first gigs I ever played a distance from home.
    Bruiser of an owner, seedy south-sea island decor; bamboo, patio lanterns, and GIANT FLOURESCENT PALM TREES on the stage. “Cum, Meesta Tallyman, Tally me banana…..”
    Some things are universal. Really love the Leyton Buzzards photo, cool stuff!

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