Thursday, 18 October 2012

The Sugargliders - A Nest With a View, 1990-1994 (Matinee Recordings)

If you want the definitive review of this wonderful album, then go and read this piece of breathtaking writing from In Love With These Times, In Spite of These Times (the best music blog there is, really). I'm not going to try and review this record now, because Kieron, as usual says it so much better than anyone else out there, but indulge me for a moment, if you will...

Today, during my lunch hour, I popped into one of the the old Selectadisc premises on Market Street in Nottingham. It's now home to Baklash - a "vintage" clothes shop that has just relocated from its dilapidated premises around the corner on Parliament Street. I wasn't in the market for a crimplene shirt, you understand; I was being nosey and killing ten minutes before I had to go and sit behind my desk for another four hours.

I went into the basement of what we used to call "top Selectadisc". Down here they used to sell the tapes, VHS videos and t-shirts. I spent a lot of time down here and "bottom Selectadisc" (also on Market Street and now empty - the last tenants being... a "vintage" clothes shop). Anyway, down in the basement there's just a load of clothes, but I just stood there for a moment and thought back to when I'd arrived in "the big city" from Grimsby and remembered how wonderful it all felt. I've been in a bit of a funny mood today.

It was down there that I bought a Sugargliders t-shirt, along with a Sweetest Ache one. They were my two favourite Sarah bands, y'see, and I could take as much as I would leave with the label. Down the road, in "bottom Selectadisc" I used to leaf through the rows and rows of seven inch singles from labels such as Sarah and Summershine (Selectadisc used to seem to have LOADS of Summershine Records) knowing full well that, if I put my hand in my pocket and bought the ones I wanted, it'd probably be two days until I my dole came through and I could eat again. Of course I bought the records.

Oddly enough, the girl I was going out with at the time had a friend at Trent Poly who actually had a sugarglider as a pet. A mere coincidence. I wasn't attracted to her because of this fact.

I digress!

Anyway, I wandered out of the old Selectadisc building this afternoon and contemplated twenty years in Nottingham all afternoon. I thought about all the places we used to go and the places we go to now, and how things have changed...

Funny, then, that I should get off the bus tonight and head home to find that the Sugargliders retrospective had winged its way from Matinee in the US. Bitter sweet serendipity, that, and it's been playing all night.

Like I said, Kieron says everything that needs to be said about this album, but for it to land today of all days, is a pretty wonderful thing. What you have here, comrades, is the most perfect indiepop - a tribute to defiance, hope and the beauty of finding confidence in a simple piece of spinning plastic. Thank heavens we have that left, at least.

Excuse me for rattling on, but why not save your own life and buy this album, eh?


Anonymous said...

Great read!

The good old days of Selectadisc and the singles shop.

My Sugargliders 7" singles will be getting a spin tomorrow and you've successfully sold another copy of 'A Nest With A View'

Don't Stop Indie Pop!

stricken office worker said...

Hi Sam

Thanks so much for your very kind words.

As I may have said, I was in Nottingham (indeed, Trent Poly) for a while and well remember the Selectadiscs (it was there, a little bit later, I bought the Blueboy single that was the last ever single on Sarah). I too have th fondest memories of them.

I share 1000 per cent your love for the Sugargliders, as you can tell.

But I should also say that if it wasn't for your support (and a handful of others!) I would have given up long ago. Thanks again, Sam.