Some of you may have noticed I retweeted a link a while back to a different version of the first track of Oasis’ third album. This is what Noel Gallagher referred to as the “Rethink”.
Although this album (Be Here Now) has been roundly pissed on by critics as the record that killed Britpop, I am actually a huge fan of it. It may have been peak Britpop (later albums somehow lacking that star quality of those before it) and greeted with disdain by some, but I wasn’t around then. Well I was, but I wasn’t listening to Oasis.
I actually discovered it roughly ten years late in 2007-8 during my early working life as a building site painter / decorator and then continued listening all through my university days. It was the soundtrack to my first year and echoed through the rest of my time there. It still sounds fucking great to me now.
Anyway it’s slated for many reasons, not least its length. The first track is 7 minutes long. Most of the tracks clock in at over 5 minutes. The whole album is 71 minutes long.
The second reason for its panning was its depth, and I’m not talking about artistic depth. I’m talking about how the songs are literally buried under about a hundred guitar overdubs, redubs, echoes and feedback tones. It’s quite trippy in a very rock ‘n’ roll sense, but it’s obvious, as NG said, someone should’ve known when to stop.
The ultimate context for all of this was that the band were basically off their heads constantly in the studio and nobody had the balls to tell them. And I think this is why I like it - the album is an expression of the ultimate band attitude and swagger, as well as being a set of great tunes. The album name is an arrogant call to arms in itself. They had basically conquered every inhibition, including the record label.
Anyway, back to the point of this post. I like to think of this “Rethink” as the true “Do You Know What I Mean” without the unnecessary chaff. Without the 127 layers of extra guitars and other pointless stuff over the top, the song sounds reborn and fresh. It’s clear to see now that in the original, this excess sort of greyed out the natural rhythm of the song, levelling its ups and downs into a single wall of noise. In this “Rethink”, not only can you hear the thudding bassline, but LG’s vocals now sound oddly bold and powerful. I particularly like the intense strings and orchestral parts now audible in certain places too. That really is creative depth.
I’m not sure about buying the album again (even if it is digitally remastered) but I would definitely recommend giving this song a listen. This is the real gem of these new releases.
If anything else in this so-called “Chasing The Sun” edition of Be Here Now turns out like this, then I might take a look at them too. Let me know if any of you recommend it.
Steel Blue Mens Watch - Portuguese apparently.
Update: this is in fact Swiss I am reliably informed. Given the writing on the front, this, In retrospect, seems obvious.
A while ago I bemoaned the fact that polka dots seem to have slid down the style agenda at the moment. There are a few out there at Adaptor and other places, but usually quite generic, a standard size of white dot, on black, red or blue. Also iTailor only has 2 out of its 400+ fabrics that have kind of polka dot theme.
This is all a little frustrating. I’m big on polka dots at the moment. It has more versatility than paisley - it doesn’t dominate an outfit as much, but it still looks stylish and unusual compared to high street shirt fabrics.
Now I seem to have found the answer though.
I’ve discovered a load of fruity designs over at CXLondon.com. Controversially and despite the name, they’re actually based in Cambridge, but the retro online shop is a treasure trove for great shirts, especially unusual styles in polka dots. They’re made by Mr Free and a couple of others.
To celebrate, here’s the song that was in my head.
Brogues are a bit blocky, but still, first time I've come across a proper look on Pinterest that I probably would mind wearing myself.
This is great. For once, a robust and unapologetic advertisement of Ben Sherman's heritage and optimistic Mod ideals.
I actually felt a real sense of pride watching this, it sounds like a brand who knows where its from and what its strengths are. BS has always been good at shirts and I hope this will be the sign of a continuing determination to serve those who see clothes as something to enjoy and be proud of, rather than just something to throw on at the last minute.
The Modfather in an unusual pose... wearing a parka!
I don't think I've ever seen a pic of Weller in a parka before so this is definitely one for the Weller Wednesday special.
Great selection of polo shirts from Relco here - unusual collar designs.
Relco have assured me that the logos are purely website watermarks by the way.
A classic Mod garment, the war-time coat has seen its fair share of unorthodox and wacky styles over the years. As I explained in my previous parka post, I’ve got a few favourites, notably LG’s Be Here Now number and my new navy blue Cartwright from Pretty Green. Most of these stay relatively true to the origin of the parka as a military-style, dark-coloured and relatively camouflaged overcoat, while at the same time being understatedly stylish.
However, I have seen a few recently that are particularly zany, so I thought I’d keep an eye on them. These are pretty bizarre and I can’t imagine myself wearing any of these really, but each to his (or her!) own and maybe somebody will make something of them.
Other sites you should check out:
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