I DESPITE THE WEATHER Kelvingrove's 11th Free Music Festival was judged a lair success, with a broad range at groups parading beiore a large contingent oi Megadeth tans. Jewel Scheme and The Thieves suilered irom one or two items hurled stagewards, but The Thieves at least had the compensation oi their iemale teenage lollowing to make up lor it; Trident, meanwhile, appeared to be illming their own version oi Spinal Tap. The day’s highlight was agreed to be The River Detectives’ set, as they braved the metal ians' disapproval by going acoushc.
I CLOSE ON THE HEELS oi reaching and holding on to the Number One spot in Britain, Wet Wet Wet can now celebrate breaking into the American charts - that seems to be the sole raison d'etre tor the British charts these days, anyway. It’s not the Childline single that’s selling, though, it’s their iirstslngle lrom last year, ‘Wishing l Was Lucky’ that’s charted at a respectable 92.
I MEAHWHILE Deacon Blue make another stab at success with a new single, ‘Chocolate Girl’, again taken irom the ‘Raintown‘ album. Remixed, oi course.
I THE CND-DRGANISED DAY oi rock at Edinburgh’s Meadowbank Stadium will still be going ahead, but without Danny Wilson, who were reported to be playing the event in our last issue. Danny Wilson say they iully support the cause, but have already scheduled recording work in Minneapolis on that date.
I THOSE NAUGHTY MACC LADS have pulled out oi theirthree planned Scottish dates, at the Edinburgh and Aberdeen Venues and Glasgow Rooltops, because, according to the Lads’ publicist (one Al D’Peesha) ‘Scottlsh promoters ieit that the Lads were a teensy bit rude ior tender Celtic ears‘. Well, that’s iairly nearthe mark, and it is true that promoters and Ents secretaries the length and breadth oi the country blanch at the thought oi the Macc Lads playing on their premises. The Lads' iirst and so iar only Scottish show, at the Edinburgh Venue earlier this year, passed without the anticipated riot, but not without a couple oi smashed laces. None oi the new dates were dellnltely contlrmed in the iirst place, despite adverts in the press. The Macc Lads can relax again: their status as Britain’s most banned rock group is still as sale as houses.
1. Philip Boa & The Voodoo Club: Skull (53rd&3rd LP track)
2. Butthole Surlers: untitled/syringe (Blast First LP track)
3. Julia Fordham: My Lover’s Keeper (Circa LP track)
4. James Brown: l'm Real (Scotti Bros) 5. Eurythmlcs: You Have Placed a Chili (RCA)
A change oi pace with the new Airlcan LP Chart, compiled monthly by Stern’s oi London. is Saiii Keita still hanging in there?
1. Aladji: Sam Mangwana, Zaire (Syllart)
2. Kass Tout: Kass Kass, Zaire (Bleu Caraibes)
3. Soro: Salii Keita, Mali (Stern’s)
4. Didadi: Nahawa Doumbia, Mali (Syllart)
5. Ambuya7: Stella Chiweshe, Zimbabwe (Globestyie)
6. Kass Kass: Kass Kass, Zaire (Stern’s)
7. Jerusalem: Alpha Biondy, ivory Coast (Stern’s)
8. Super Djata: Zani Diabate, Mali (Mango) .
9. Ali Farka Toure: Ali Farka Toure, Mall (World Circuit) 10. Thokozlle: Mahlathini/Mahotella Queens, S. Airica (Earthworks/Virgin)
I M-D-Emm: Get Busy (it’s Partytime!) (Rough Trade). Cut-up dance record, aimed at the clubs, and heavy on the sampling. Watch out torthe neatly-sampled jazz drum break and the lniectious ‘Partytime is anytime’ relrain on a radio near you soon. (Mab) I The Cropdusters: Banjo Hill (DDT). In the mould oi Men They Couldn’t Hang/We Free Kings, banjo and liddle to the lore. Perhaps what Run Rig might have sounded like had they been drawn to country rather than rock. (John Dundas)
I And Also The Trees: The House oi The Heart (Reilex). The band have been dogged with Cure comparisons ior years, but the only comparison with that group really is the chiming, echoey guitars and cheeriul pace. The singer, who sounds like he’s taken a lesson or two irom Edwyn Collins, and the strings and trumpet, swirling around in the instrumental sections sounding just short oi glorious, coniirm that The Cure this ain’t. Hard to dislike, but hard really to respond to. (Mab)
I Playground: Seeking The Truth EP (Fourth Dimension). Veerlng towards the hipper US ‘Hoise’ groups, but never enough to be accused oi plagiarism, Playground announce their arrival with this caterwauling EP. Starring a bludgeonlng rhythm section, scalded-cat vocals and masses oi distortion, the three tracks here come drenched in adrenalin and illrt gloriously with chaos. The sell-beliei on show suggests that this could be the start oi something big. (£1 .GDto Fourth Dimension, 7 Wentwlo Gdns, Buliockstone, Heme Bay, Kent CT6 7TV.) (Andy Crabb)
I The Housemartlns: Now That’s What I Call Duite Good (GolDiscs). This is The Housemartlns' ‘Hatiul oi Hollow’ and Greatest Hits rolled into one double-LP, the hits mingling with album tracks, radio sessions and B-sides. Excellent sieevenotes, typical oi the band’s seli-deprecating humour, are an added treat. Don’t let ‘Caravan oi Love’ put you oil: The Housemartins were, along with a select iew like Madness, Ian Dury or The Smiths, a quintessentially English group, and had some iine songs to boot. More than quite good.(Mab)
I Blues ’n’ Trouble: Live (Cacophony). The Edinburgh group BB King called ‘the best white blues band around’ couldn’t expect much greater praise than that, so what else is there to say? Captured live in Bremen, Blues ’n’ Trouble get down to basics on some smokin’ rhythm ‘n’ blues tracks, liberally splashed with great harmonica-playing. From express-train stompers to laid-back blues, they know their stuii.(John Dundas)
I Julia Fordham: Julia Fordham (Circa). i can see a lot oi Joni Mitchell comparisons about to be hurled towards Julia Fordham, and there is a Mitchellesque quality to her voice, but beyond that she’s her own woman. The
patchwork oi styles begins with gentle Airlcan drumming and singing on ‘Happy Ever Aiter’, ioiiowed by piano and vocal pieces with muted jazzy rhythm section and up-tempo ADR. Some oi the songs that get the lull rock treatment outstay their welcome, but ‘My Lover’s Keeper’ stands out a mile, and has to be the next single. Julia’s been keeping me company on my turntable every night this week, and that's not bad tor a two-thirds great LP. (Mab)
I Blyth Power: The Barman and Other Stories (Midnight). Uniortunate that the weekly comics’ coverage oi Blyth Power has iocused on Josei Porta’s obsession with trains. This has probably led many to believe that they’re a twee, ‘shambling' coniection, an assumption which is laughably oil target. This, their second LP, sees their blend oi early punk and mediaeval iniluences being honed to a more polished point. Lyrically, an elegy to Robert Graves sits alongside a version oi ’He Who Would Valiant Be’ (The old hymn!) and several wry, evocative tales. Add this to a collection oi sparkling tunes and you’ve got something rather special. (Andy Crabb) I Lixx: Loose On You (Kick Ass). Accidentally played the iirst track at 45rpm, and it’s UNBEATABLE! The singer's got a warble that Feargal Sharkey couldn't match! Slowed down, we iind an enjoyable mlni-LP’s worth oi HM, lyrically as weak as you’d expect, but well-played and driving stuii. i expected to hate this, but it does wonders as a contrast to Julia Fordham’s album.(Mab)
I Stephen Donaldson: i Know Everything (Telguel). Side one oi this mini-LP is produced by Paul Haig and Alan Rankine, and it’s only to be expected that the end result would resemble their work in a iew ways, plus Lloyd Cole, chewing a mouthiul oi prunes, at that. Nice enough, but doesn’t catch Iight.(John Dundas)
I Various: Good Feeling (53rd & 3rd). A timely release ior 53rd & 3rd, and one which could bury the image oi their roster as overilowlng with sub-Love bands mourning the loss oi their Pastels badges. The (ever-improving) Pastels do contribute, but so do Sonic Youth, Loop and the wonderlully glam Red Kross, alongside excellent tracks by The Vaselines, Philip Boa and The Voodoo Club and an unreleased Shop Assistants track. A cut above the average indie compilation, and at last l’m beginning to ieel some aiiection for that group Beat Happening.(Mab)
The List 10- 23 June 1988 31