I’m waiting for the postman, because I’ve ordered a hat off the internet to keep dry when I go to Ullapool tomorrow, so let’s listen together (you mean you haven’t bought it yet?).
The tracks on this album are the perfect length- mostly less than two minutes, or ballad length (less that three). I'll pick out my faves although I've listened to the lot:
Investors in People: a song that ridicules workplace insincerity by reducing it to essential items of clothing. Work is quite literally, pants. Many people will feel this song deeply in their souls, but with a bit of blue sky thinking, we will get through it together, I'm sure.
‘My name is Lydia, and I am in media’ the first line of Bus Passes (for the middle classes) starts the song as it means to go on. This is my favourite track; Alan and Fran in the samba band. Ouch! How to get rid of your smug friends in one fell swoop; it made me laugh out loud at 10.46 a.m. just as I did at 9.47 p.m. on Saturday when they played it live. Bus stop!
Lotus Birth: Oh, horrible! This song pinpoints the disgustingness of hippy childbirth. I have been to look for the placenta that they chucked off the pier bobbing about in the English Channel, but I couldn’t see it. It must have sunk.
Latte: This one reveals a stark hatred of the ‘Can I get…’ culture, with as many offensive phrases as possible crammed into one song, none of which are as offensive as ‘Can I get a latte’, sung in a suitably irritated tone through gritted teeth. Brilliant.
Canary Wharf: ‘I’ll wear an Edinburgh Woollen Mills Scarf’; I wonder if they could flog this to the company as an advertising jingle? Possibly not, as so many potential customers are instructed to fuck off back to where they came from. Has Jem not heard of upward mobility? Essential listening on the DLR at maximum volume with a ghettoblaster, please.
Larry Hagman: ‘Didn’t speak on Sundays’, says the guitar, because Larry Hagman didn’t speak on Sundays. Sounds like a good idea to me.
Pickles: ‘Eric Pickles: what a twat’. Quite agree. Why has nobody said this before? And they take the Mickey out of Boris too (see what I did just there?). This should be sent to the Houses of Parliament immediately for their edification. Lester Square used to send all his songs to The Queen at Buckingham Palace (the female one), so why not?
Crook of the Elbow has an insouciant rhythm and homes in on that Beckham thing of, well, hanging the bag on the crook of the elbow. In London you can tell who reads Hello magazine because they walk through the most uncool streets with their fake Gucci bags hanging down, except in this song it’s a supermarket bag with a jar of onion gravy in it. Delish!
Shining Light: Aww, SuBo, aww.
The production is fab (if you notice things like that, and even if you don't, you do). I love the grumpy bass sound, rasping guitar sound (there is a particularly good guitar riff in Backstairs Billy), crisp drum sound, and of course the icing on the cake: Jem's powerful and authoritative voice singing complete nonsense.
Crimp it, baby!
Buy it here: https://asboderek.bandcamp.com/releases
(the postman never came)