Take That and panties!
To while away the time before Take That’s SECC shows, Bethan Cole looked on as 2000 of their most rabid fans crammed into a Glasgow recording studio.
it's 9am one cloudless July morning and outside Glasgow‘s Brill Building (home of the Wets) there‘s a heady air of anticipation. The clusters of pre-teen girls that form a straggling queue down the street are chattering and whispering and breaking out into raucous bursts of Everything Changes. Hair scraped up into high ponytails, adorned with gold chains, earrings, clad in best out-of—school trainers and Lolita-esque tight tops. these women of tomorrow were on a serious mission. They had come to make their declaration, to sing their paean of appreciation. And the object of their desires? The ﬁve winsome, cheeky (and rather sexually ambiguous) demi-gods of pop, Take That.
The occasion for this orgy of squeaky-clean fandom: to lay down a track, ‘We Love You Take That’, attempt to break the world record for the number of people ever crammed into one recording studio and to raise money for the Young At Heart children‘s hospice in Paisley. The brainchild of hospice fund-raiser Peter Stewart, it sounds like a contemporary version of Dante's Inferno. Hundreds of over—excited teenage girls squeezed into a
Take That: the genuine article
confined space, hyped up further by the presence of look—alike outfit. Fake That.
The staff member I spoke to the previous day had announced with relief that he would be on holiday: that it would not be a safe place for a man to hang around. However, the only men on the minds of the 2000-odd so assembled females were Gary, Robbie. Howard, Jason and Mark. In their absence, Fake That
provided an adequate focus for the frenzied attention.
Days later, event co-ordinator Lyn McNicol described the atmosphere: ‘There was a tremendous swell of enthusiasm. I must admit, I had to have a
few paracetamols — we‘re still clearing up even now! There‘s graffiti everywhere — “We love you. Victor" (one of Fake That) all over the doors and walls.‘
The staff of The Brill Building directed the event with the swift. efficient precision of a military operation, serving the hyped-up fans sweeties and soft drinks while they waited. The song itself (based on the We Love You Rollers 70s number) was recorded in just three takes. limiting the sardine scenario in the studio to just twenty minutes.
‘The heat was fantastic.‘ continues McNicol, who also sang on the record. ‘We did have a couple fainting but Rock Steady security dealt with it very well.‘
Take That may have become the ultimate post-postmodern pop grup, but their true fan base is little different from Bros, Wham or The Osmonds: screaming, hormonal teenage girls.
‘We Love You Take That‘ is currently being turned into a glossy disco mix of the in-studio mayhem and is due to be released by Iona Records in the run-up to Take That‘s SECC show.
Take That may have become the ultimate post- postmodern pop group, dream boys lauded by newspaper columnists, cheesecake for intellectual females. but their true fan base is little different from Bros. Wham or The ()smonds: screaming. hormonal teenage girls. indulging in the sort of misguided romanticism that brutally masks the harsh reality of male-female relations. In a world where adolescents suffocate under the info overload of Nintendo. it‘s comforting to be able to report that some of the kids are still naive and untouched as they throw their knickers emblazoned with l"**k me Mark at the stage. Healthy teenage activity. I‘ll say.
Yoke Thur begin reform-night residency a! the SEC C on Thurs 25T
‘The guitar is an instrument that’s been around for a long time and people should have progressed a long way from playing twelve-chord blues - possibly.’
The guitar-wielding luddltes and the mechanical techno-heads have upheld a fragile entente for years, but at any time a careless remark such as the above from Transcendental Love Machine vocalist A.O. could interrupt the ceasefire. A.O. can afford to tease - his band are one of the experimental set foraging for Ideas In the no man’s land between the rock and dance canps. Groups like Primal Scream and New Order have been highly effective in introducing dance elements to a rock audience; now the likes of
Underworld and The Orb are performing the task from the opposite direction. London’s Transcendental love Machine belong to their corps. ‘We’re not great fans of rock really,’ says A.O. ‘We tend to like bands who twist the boundaries of being a rock
band, so our use of guitar comes more from an admiration of weird guitar players. When you think of rock guitar you think of Bryan Adams and crap like that. When I think of rock guitar I think of Jason from Spiritualised.’ iiow you’re talking. This notion of
twisting rock structures is much in evidence on TLM’s debut album ‘Orgasmatronic’, both musically - on tracks like ‘One Thousand’ with its Floydian guitar overlay, ‘Psychotic Woman Blues’ and even the funky pulse of ‘Oragonfly’, reminiscent of those crossover giants 808 State - and lyrically. A.O. takes the traditional boy-meets-girl hot lurve theme and coats it in futuristic irony on tracks like ‘Inside My Soul Is Burning With You’ and ‘The Love Machine’ and with the images of the Silver Atomic Lady on the sleeve which all toy with ‘the theory that we will all develop into a world where we have programmable partners, and also the Wilhelm Reich Orgone Accumulator where they’re using the power from orgasms for world peace.’
It’s not cock rock, It’s not sweaty soul; it must be virtual reality raunch. (Fiona Shepherd)
Transcendental love Machine play The Arena, Glasgow on Fri 19.
Tennents Live! Making Music Happen
: u The List 19—25 August 1994