I had an epiphany today.
I realised that, in some cases, I have been discriminating against particular albums simply because they exist in my collection only in cassette form. I think this is called ‘formatism’. If it isn’t I’d like to go on record as the first person to describe it as such.
My epiphany was reached while listening to ‘The Boy’s Heart’ by much-loved (in these parts anyway) Martin Stephenson and The Daintees. I learned that this Kitchenware Records album, which previously I hadn’t played that much, was every bit as good as their first three albums, which I own on CD.
‘We can roll’ is the album’s finest moment by some considerable amount, and still a fixture of (their very fine) live set. If you’ve never seen Martin and the boys live then you really should as I’ve never been disappointed when I’ve seen them (at Sunderland Empire, Newcastle Riverside (now those were the days), The Cluny and, where I first encountered them, busking in The Market Place in Sunderland).
When you hail from London, Liverpool or New York you must become blasé about hearing local landmarks mentioned in song. When you’re from Sunderland it doesn’t tend to happen quite as frequently. That’s the reason why ‘8.30 Mowbray Morning’ fills me with such a warm feeling – when we were little boys in short trousers we would walk through Mowbray Park every Wednesday morning on the way to our Gran and Granddad’s house, playing with our favourite matchbox cars on the park’s pathways as we slowly made our way.
Listen out for ‘Ballad of the English Rose’ too - recorded when Frank Turner was probably still in short trousers too.
Label – London/Kitchenware Records
Year - 1992