Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Long Rambling Post On My Reformation Prejudices



Did anybody buy the boxset of the Jesus and Mary Chain Barrowlands gig from last year? For fifty quid you could get a 12" album of the complete Psychocandy set, a further 10" of the "encores" that preceded the afore mentioned set, a cd containing all of the music and a forty page hard backed book. Those of you who have read this blog for a while will know that this sort of thing is like a red rag to a bull for me and being a Mary Chain completest it was doubly tempting until I had a hard look at myself. Half a ton, even to me seemed a tad expensive for 21 songs and a book and why did I want a recording of a gig that I had no interest in attending at the time and have subsequently regretted my decision for all of half an hour after reading Swiss Adam's account of the Manchester gig? I decided not to buy it. I could spend the money on something novel like new music or put towards a pair of Adidas Hamburg trainers.

But still it nagged at me. What if I got a copy of the main set? It had been produced for RSD 15 and if I had decided to get out of my bed at 5 am on 18th of April and ventured into Monorail it's a stick on that I would have bought it.. So with a couple of clicks of the mouse I was Discogs bound. Cheapest 35 quid, not much of a bargain there. Then I remembered that a couple of years ago on RSD I had bought a copy of Psychocandy on red and black splattered vinyl which had been played once and then filed. I counted up my copies of the album, the original bought when released back in 1985 which still sounded good but the cover was pretty tatty, there was the copy that came in the vinyl album box set and the RSD one, not to mention the cd  and the dble cd repackaged ones. I wouldn't miss the RSD one I reasoned with myself. So I decided to contact one of the sellers on Discogs of the Barrowlands album and see if he fancied swapping, like you did back in the day. My luck was in and we duly swapped albums. I knew that the red and black Psychocandy was worth more than the other album but I wasn't bothered about that. The seller after receiving the album got in contact and offered me anything in his collection up to a further £20 which was most generous I thought. So we were both happy with the deal. By the way the live versions sound okay, more polished and less shambolic than when I heard a lot of these tracks nearly thirty years ago but you would expect that to be the case.

Now, I will get to the point of the post. I have said before that I am no fan of the reunion tour and subsequent "product". You would never get the Fall doing this and quiet rightly so. I am of the opinion if you have nothing new to contribute and have to live off of past glories bow out gracefully.

I have heard the argument also, that this would be depriving younger fans of the chance to see them, well yes but that's life that's what music's all about. I never got the chance to see The Velvet Underground and I had no desire to see them back in 1993 as they were not the same people who recorded the first album, well they were but you know what I mean.

Aren't the Reid Brothers entitled to a pay out I hear you say. Well not really, we're not talking Leonard Cohen here, who had to go on the road as he was robbed blind by someone he trusted. As far as I'm aware nothing like that happened to the boys from East Kilbride, They owned their own studio and the music has been licensed to Hollywood films. If they snorted and pissed it all away, well then again, that is rock and roll.

In a nut shell if the JAMC release new material and it is any good then I will buy it. I know I am a hypocrite as I bought the vinyl box set when I had all the albums on vinyl apart from the BBC sessions and the live album. I never said that I was consistent.

Anyway, here is the last good thing that either of the Reid brothers recorded as far as I'm aware apart from their little sister's album. It wouldn't have been out of place on one of the last JAMC albums or Darklands for that matter. This came out in 2005 on 7" and includes Julie Barber on vocals but I don't know anything more about her.

Jim Reid - Song For A Secret


9 comments:

acidted said...

From the title I was hoping for a discourse on the sixteenth century schism of the western church and perhaps some I saw martin luther bitd anecdotes. I was initially disappointed but that was a very fine JAMC post.

Swiss Adam said...

Snap! Like Acid Ted I was hoping for a schism related post.

I enjoyed the gig, really good. Wasn't fussed about the boxset- how often would I play it? Once, maybe twice. It wasn't even the gig I went to. Would possibly have a listen to it online. I'm not as hardcore about reformations as you are Drew though I agree about the VU.

drew said...

Coming from the West of Scotland, it would probably have been more of a critique of John Knox, if I were that way inclined alhough I have an even dimmer view on Religion than I do on bands reforming

George said...

I'm with you on this one Drew, not going to see bands who re-form many years later. It's a bit like those remastered with extra track releases as far as I'm concerned. From the title I thought it would be a Fall-related post, something to do with Post TLC Reformation.

Brian said...

I want to give a hearty "hear, hear," but I would be a hypocrite. I saw Pixies when they reformed (long before there was new music), and there have been others. I'm probably even worse with collector sets like the one from JAMC. If I like the band enough, I'm the first sucker in line. Not proud of this shortcoming.

Dirk said...

Hmmmh, I spent way too much money on various Clash - compilations to have a proper opinion here, I'm afraid ....

Dirk said...

Hmmmh, I spent way too much money on various Clash - compilations to have a proper opinion here, I'm afraid ....

Walter said...

I agree to you all. What does it mean to have a record from a concert you are not there. I would spent a lot of more money on other records. But it's all right if you're in to this band.

The Swede said...

An excellent piece, parts of which could easily be the soundtrack to conversations I've had with myself many times, as I queued up to buy 'Blonde on Blonde', 'London Calling', 'Electric Warrior', 'Kind of Blue' or many other titles I could mention, for the 6th, 7th or 8th time.
As for reformations, I saw The Velvet Underground in 1993 and I'm bloody glad that I did, they were great. Then again I was at the small The Town & Country Club, I'm not sure I could've coped with VU as seen from the other end of Wembley Arena the following night, but that's another matter. The live album from the tour was terrible though.
I'm sure we all have rules as regards our favourite bands. I know that if The Clash had announced their reformation in 2001 I would have been utterly devastated, while simultaneously phoning every available ticket agency to ensure that I made it to every show. Rock 'n' Roll - it makes hypocrites of us all!
I'm not a big JAMC fan, but this really is a thought provoking post and I know that I'm going to be mulling over some of the points raised in the next few days.