Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Johnny Boy

The first time I was aware of Johnny Boy was when I received the latest installment in the series of Boobytrap monthly cds back in 2002. On first listen it sounded to these ears like a lost Pete Wylie song from the same session that produced Come Back. It had that epic, dare I say it, wall of sound backing, with a sample at the beginning which took me a long time to identify as being from Mean Streets. Being a sucker for anything vaguely Spectorish I fell in love with the track and had it on continually for weeks and eagerly awaited the next single.

It was to be a two year wait, the follow-up has probably one of the best titles I've ever heard - You Are The Generation That Bought More Shoes And You Get What You Deserve. The song turned out to be every bit as bombastic as the debut if not more so. It was produced by James Dean Bradfield who had heard the first single and loved it that much that he offered to produce the duo. Why this song did not did not reach a wider audience I will never understand as it is epic in every way.

After another couple of years an album appeared which I found a disappointment, I don't know if this was due to the wait and expectation of the first 2 singles or I had just lost interest but I have not found myself playing anything else apart from the tracks that introduced me to the band after the initial couple of listens. Maybe further listening and a reappraisal is in order.

On their myspace page they describe their music as "Church bells, boy-girl vocals, loops, twists, warps, walls of sound and edgy guitars combined to rekindle the idea of Sandinista!-era Clash having an, erm, shootout with Phil Spector. The Sandinista reference I know will put off a few of you (JC?) but give them a chance.

Johnny Boy - Johnny Boy Theme
Johnny Boy - Johnny Boy Dub


Simon said...

Hmmm. Interesting. I'd not heard of that before. I see what you mean about Wah!, but then if old Mr Bradfield is involved then I'm not surprised. Design For Life was hugely influenced by Story Of The Blues.

I kind of like it, but it's missing something, perhaps it doesn't go far enough. I just did some googling and saw a review which compares them to GoTeam, but GoTeam do something with their music, that just has bit more sparkle. It's missing the sparkle. Great sound though. Perhaps they should get Weatherall in to produce!

drew said...

I suppose the GoTeam comparison is relevant, however I find some of their stuff too full if you know what I mean, there seems to be so much going on at times that it is hard to get the overall feel, however Ladyflash is a classic, think that I will have to dig that out tonight.
The Weatherall remix is a good shout, make it into an epic of Weekender proportions.

Simon said...

Ladyflash is just a superb track; one of my favourite singles of the past ten years.

And as for Weekender, now that's something I've been meaning to post for a while. Wonder if the video's on youtube?

drew said...

it is but the one I saw was in 2 halves. You will need to race me to that post. Thinking alike again Simon, scary.

Anonymous said...

'You are the generation' was another of those tunes that i used to dj with and wait for the great british public to form a queue to ask me who was singing. Never happened!
Brilliant intro. An easy track to change from rock to motown.
Never realised it was produced by Bradford though.


RemixCulture said...

I'm going to check them out.

spaceman73 said...

any chance you could re-post the dub version of this??
Thanks a bunch

drew said...


spaceman73 said...

Thank you very much..