Friday, 10 September 2010

Doing it for the kids

There is always a moment of genuine disappointment with any musical find - that point when someone else connects with your band, group or singer  and you feel they have invaded your house with their rowdy ways and sullied everything.

This used to happen a great deal when I was younger - thinner but thicker - as I clearly missed the point that record companies only wanted our money and anyone's loyalty. But there were record labels that tried not to sell out - at the beginning - and had an independent spirit - a small scale cottage industry approach to getting the 'new sounds' to the kids.

So when Paul bought a Velvet Underground record - or I found a Bachelor Pad record it was because we had somehow taken that journey to that discovery by ourselves [with a thousand other people - but it felt like our own] I'm not certain that I care about the 'find' anymore - it used to be the defining moment of an 'indie kid's' life - but having three children that tire you out - that take up all your thoughts and fears and hopes and therefore your love doesn't leave much space to devoting your life to The Driscolls and all that they released.  But there was a time when I remember that record arriving at my house and finding its blend of chiming sixties beat pop and catchy simplicity to be a discovery akin to Darwin's. It wasn't and I find myself thinking more about Darwin these days than i do about the Driscolls.

To be honest I'm not certain how my children will discover music - my house had a few records in - good ones and bad ones. Elton John's Greatest Hits, Queen's Greatest Hits, The Rolling Stones Greatest HIts [no Beatles - pure rock n roll my parents] Simon and Garfunkel, and an Elvis Presley gatefold live affair that I seriously thought had been signed to my mum with 'Mary Thanks Elvis' - clearly it was 'Many Thanks Elvis' and it was a real signature it was part of the 'personal design' - in fact if you think about it if it had been signed I'm not sure why my mum would have kept it in a cabinet with the telephone on it. But there you go. My parents weren't keen to school me in the ways of popular culture - they didn't have time.

I actually saw a kid yesterday with a RAMONES t-shirt and different coloured Croc sandals - he was about eight and his mum was with him [clearly coming out of her goth revival days] now that kid might like the RAMONES. He really might have found the RAMONES for himself. Actually I don't know why I feel so bitter about it - I am certain my children will rummage through the records. Although we are currently dancing to a 7inch of Scottish Country dancing and a french song called Mashed Potatoes.

So this brings me to the Jesus and Mary Chain - a McGee discovery on the b-side of a cassette tape all fuzzed up, feedbacking fuckery. Whilst Upside Down was the breath of [dirty] air I was inhaling it was 'Never Understand' that really made sense to me.

I remember the red cover of the  Jesus and Mary Chain 'Never Understand' - it's simplicity and brutality there on the sleeve - now clearly the JAMC had switched to Blanco Y Negro - but McGee had some how orchestrated this move to keep with the independent foundations of Creation [well i'm saying that now] But it was that initial Creation release that led to this - the rise of the independents - their moving into bed with the big boys - oh it came back to haunt them but still - i still view 'Never Understand' as an independent record. So let's return to putting this slice of honest angst on the record player. Again if I remember - Paul had somehow found his way into the JAMC vibe and was introducing it to his younger brother - this 7 inch single purchased in WH SMITHS i think - rotating steadily at 45rpm.

The simple crackle of a rotating disc as the needle finds its way into the sounds contained within. A slow shriek of feedback growing ever monstorous as those Spector[ish] drums help us navigate the feelings of people just getting you wrong. You never understand me - you never understand. It's this heavy thrill of rock n roll at the core surrounded by the scottish temperament - there's a coldness - an estate mentally that says we live here - we hate it - you hate us. This machine kills all idiots. I bought a t-shirt too - a JAMC t-shirt - always show your allegiances - well you do at that age - and i can just about fit into it - in the mornings generally. The t-shirt is 25 years old. The Mary Chain still matter. Some things are as simple as that.

The Jesus and Mary Chain - Never Understand