Up Against The Wall

(Ian MacCulloch, 6/8/05, by dopamine)

An unfortunate lack of inspiration this evening. I must be pining for Let's Kiss & Make Up. So my eyes rove and happen upon one of those old-fashioned plastic discs that seem so arcane and weird nowadays when surrounded by virtual music and the like.

Charity shops are great, especially when they sell you Echo & The Bunnymen LP's. I've been listening to the reissued Icicle Works album recently, and they're of the same ilk as the Bunnymen - scouse neo-psychedelia with a leaning towards the hugely dramatic. Sweeeeet. So of course, what's their finest hour? The Cutter? Seven Seas? Nothing Ever Lasts Forever? Don't kid me, when you've written one of the greatest songs of the last 50 years, everything else tends to pale into comparison. Listen to The Killing Moon. Really listen. It's such a good track - atmospheric, filmic, and oh so eighties. In a good way this time, if you're as sick as I am of the thin-tied, angular-haired revivalists you find about, this is the track that will replace your irritation with good old-fashioned moping and misery.

It's actually not a miserable song. It's Ian McCullogh hectoring the world, in a gentle, almost foppish fashion - if you are happy to listen to the Smiths for their jangly, unusual arrangements, to The Cure for their gothic (in the proper sense of the word) romanticism, to what one might call proper indie, then your heart was mightily cheered to watch Donnie Darko. Lovely.

I've talked for a while about nothing there. Good for me. Listen to Echo & The Bunnymen, but make sure you listen really loud (on vinyl if possible), and make sure you grow your hair and start writing poetry because this, my friend, this is romance.

The Music
Echo & The Bunnymen - The Killing Moon

BONUS Material:
For Colin:
The Field Mice - Let's Kiss & Make Up

Idlewild - You Held The World In Your Arms Tonight
One of the few tracks of recent years to really capture the bombastic, overblown pop of the Bunnymen and their contemporaries.

Pavement - The Killing Moon
Nouvelle Vague - The Killing Moon
Grant Lee Phillips - The Killing Moon
I don't like Pavement, boring slackers that they are. But, for the sake of completeness, here's a fairly decent cover. Grant Lee Phillips has one of the great voices of all time, so he's a safe bet. Nouvelle Vague are more of a Gallic curiosity.

The 'fo
Artist: Echo & The Bunnymen
Website: bunnymen.com
Recommended: Songs To Learn And Sing
Label: Cooking Vinyl
Buy: Amazon, CV
More: Hype Machine; elbo.ws
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1 comment:

K said...

I'm not sure I can thank you enough for posting The Field Mice's Kiss and Make Up. I had forgotten how much I loved it.

It reminds me of drinking Newkie Brown at an Sarah records/shoegazing night at a Manchester club I can't even remember the name of any more, except it was near Powercuts Records, it was painted in black throughout and it got knocked down in the name of urban regeneration some time in the mid-90s.

You have made a thirtysomething fart very nostalgic.