What is the album, band or song that defines ‘ that’ time in your life?
We all have them, the soundtrack to our growing up, the music that epitomises the time we were young, optimistic and pretty clueless about what the future might bring. That time we were free.
There are a few for me, largely from the ‘Madchester ‘ era but one band stands head and shoulders above the rest and that is Primal Scream.
The news that Denise Johnson, whose rich voice provided backing depth to the likes of Primal Scream and New Order, had died saw me scrambling for my Screamadelica CD and then shimmying up the loft ladder to find the vinyl.
Yes, I’m that old. So old I nearly did my back in.
Denise came to prominence on the 1991 landmark album, notably on track Come Together.
Listening back in my car on the way to bootcamp (I’d never have said that sentence in 1991) I’d entirely forgotten what an absolute timeless classic it is from the cover art to the beat.
It was a new sound and safe to say if it was released today – it would be downloaded into every teenager’s playlist immediately.
Though to be fair Bobby Gillespie and band might have to upgrade their wardrobe – although admittedly curtain haircuts on blokes are back in again.
It was about that time I owned a kickass pair of 22-inch bottomed flares , all my clothes came from Afflecks Palace and all my records came from Eastern Bloc records ( look it up kids, your parents were probably cooler than you).
I was to head off to university down south with this 12 inch among a stash of record tucked in my luggage, making me instantly edgier than my southern counterparts and the go-to record library for student DJs.
For them the Madchester revolution was a mystery, for me a rite of passage and that’s what makes the music of youth so compelling.
My partner does not ‘get’ Primal Scream but as I told him, as I forced him to listen, ‘Don’t fight it, feel it’.