Home > blogging for Britain, Uncategorized > Five records I really like that don’t even make it on to great lost albums lists so I’ve had to create my own

Five records I really like that don’t even make it on to great lost albums lists so I’ve had to create my own

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House of Freaks: Cakewalk – You won’t find this on Spotify. Indeed you probably won’t find it anywhere. It might not even be the best House of Freaks record (Monkey On A Chain Gang and Tantilla are both excellent too). But Cakewalk, the sound of a band trying to make one last attempt at commercial success while simultaneously realising that it would never happen and that they didn’t care whether it did or not…well that’s a heady mix. And, in A Good Man, My House, Rocking Chair and Never, it contains four slabs of songwriting genius. Its final track, Remember Me Well, is unbearably poignant given what followed.

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The Triffids: The Black SwanBorn Sandy Devotional is rightly regarded as a classic album, but the Triffids’ final record remains special to me. It was greeted with bemusement, especially after the commercial sheen of Calenture, but its odd amalgam of styles and quirky instrumentation doesn’t obscure the quality of David McComb’s songwriting. Another record infused with a sense of resignation, and that foreshadowed tragedy, I loved it before McComb’s death made it quite so significant.

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Teenage Fanclub: Songs From Northern Britain – It’s hard to argue that the follow up to Grand Prix is obscure (it isn’t), but if ever there is a record that’s improved over time, this is it. Everything, from its cover art, to its title, to its running order, is perfect. With three songwriters, Fanclub albums could be a little uneven as each is afforded equal billing, but it’s on this record, where Raymond McGinley’s efforts match those of Norman Blake and Gerry Love, that the quality remains uniformly excellent.

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The Grapes of Wrath: These Days – John Leckie has produced lots of my favourite albums, this being one (Tantilla by House of Freaks and My Morning Jacket’s Z are two others), but in an interview I found somewhere online he shared my dismay that this record, by the recently reformed Grapes, wasn’t massive. I pressed this album on all my friends and most of them fell in love with it too; the others can’t have played it. Leckie’s production definitely added something to These Days; I suspect it would have sounded very different in the hands of another producer. But if the sound of multitracked guitars combined with plaintive Beatles-esque melodies sounds like your thing, give this a try.

Fireproof

That Petrol Emotion: Fireproof – A criminally underrated album in the canon of a criminally underrated band, Fireproof was another “Fuck you” to either the record industry, the cloth-eared public or both…there’s something of a theme in this list as it seems to me that once a band realises they’re not going to be living off royalties forever, they channel that anger and resentment into something special. Fireproof lacks the variety of the other Petrols records, but it features some characteristically memorable riffs and songs that contain more adrenaline and attack than most bands manage in a lifetime. I suspect that because the music press had decided that TPE’s ‘relevance’ was on the wane they turned a blind eye to this gem. Buffoons.

 

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