B-Side Beauty


This was the b-side of Roxy Music’s 1980 single “Same Old Scene” and was the first time they put out a 45 with a totally new, non-album track on the flip that wasn’t an instrumental. I think they only did it twice so it’s a rare entry in their discography.

Much as I like it when bands have original b-sides on their singles — especially ones as good as this — I wish Roxy had put this on Flesh+Blood instead, in place of the ropey cover of “In The Midnight Hour” which really blemishes an otherwise terrific album.

Download: Lover – Roxy Music (mp3)

Photo: Anjelica Huston and Manolo Blahnik by David Bailey for Vogue UK January 1974

The Singles Box


This 1981 single is the last one Post-Punk squawkers Essential Logic released. A year later Laura Logic quit the music biz to join the Hare Krishnas with old buddy and former X-Ray Spex bandmate Poly Styrene.

They could be quite atonal at times but this is a sweet, bouncy record that’s about as pop as they ever got. Probably why I bought it and still have it.

Download: Fanfare In The Garden – Essential Logic (mp3)

Apparently they reformed — as everyone does these days — in 2001 but I haven’t heard any fruits of that.

Something for The Weekend



This is the first record Ultravox made with Midge Ure. I quite liked the Vienna album at the time but wasn’t all that keen on them after that. Not sure what their critical rep is these days but I’ve a feeling even Gary Numan is cooler than they are now.

Something for the Weekend



This is a great find, Debbie Harry (who looks stunning) singing with avant garde punk-funkers James White & The Blacks at Hurrahs in New York in 1980.

Something for the Weekend



When I first heard this on the radio I didn’t know who Electronic were and it took a minute for the penny to drop that it actually was Bernard Sumner and Neil Tennant singing and not some copycats.

This must be one of the few instances where a “supergroup” makes a record as good as the ones they did with their original bands.

PS: I fucking hated it when Top of The Pops got the audience to whoop it up to add more of a “live” atmosphere to the show. It sounded so bloody fake, the complete opposite of what they intended.

Something for the Weekend



The Go-Go’s live way back in 1980 still looking a bit punky. Love the girls in the audience too.

From Bedsit to Dancefloor


Ben Watt and Tracey Thorn have been the First Couple of Indie for as long as there has been such a thing as Indie, and a lot of us have become adults along with them. The thing I like about these two photos is that you don’t have to have had a successful music career (or still be with your college girlfriend/boyfriend) to relate to the story they tell.

I was a student just a couple of years later than they were and looked the same as they do on the left: the second-hand clothes, the cheap haircut, the white socks. Living in cold rooms and eating tinned food, drinking litre bottles of cheap cider at parties, evenings in the pub putting the world to rights while sinking pints and filling ashtrays. You’re awkward and unsure of yourself, but the freedom of living away from home for the first time widens your horizons and you start to become the person you’re going to be when you grow up.

Then you leave college and take those first steps into the big wide world. If you’re lucky you get a job and have some money in the bank (or an overdraft and credit card bills if you’re me). Your clothes and haircuts get better, you appreciate good food and stop looking like you live on a diet of cold baked beans and roll-ups. Increasing experience and responsibility over the years means you’re no longer a callow amateur but a professional and an adult. 

The photos are also a good illustration of the musical trip Ben and Tracey have taken, from fragile acoustic Indiepop to sophisticated electronic club music — the clothes got better there too.

Download: Night and Day – Everything But The Girl (mp3)
Download: Before Today (Chicane Remix) – Everything But The Girl (mp3)

Something for the Weekend



Dennis Edwards: Magnificent bastard.

What’s it all about?

The sentimental musings of an ageing expat in words, music, and pictures. Mp3 files are up for a limited time so drink them while they're hot. Contact me: lee at londonlee dot com

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