Tuesday, 11 February 2014

The Song - Teenage Fanclub's "The Concept"

She wears denim wherever she goes. Says she's gonna get some records by the Status Quo. Oh yeah.

Man, this really takes me back. And really makes me feel fucking old.

Yap, I clearly remember, as a young feller, rushing out excitedly to buy Bandwagonesque all those years ago  and, for weeks after, playing the shit out of it. Although the album couldn't live up to the massive levels of overhype it received from seemingly every single muzak mag, it was nevertheless a fine collection. And listening to it again these many moons later, the LP - and particularly his song - has really held up far better than I expected!

Here's the live performance video here of the Fannies knocking out the wonderfully evocative and blistering "The Concept" back in those heady days.

Although, in terms of lyrics (that, oddly, name-check muzak mongers Status Quo and - perhaps in a nod to Billy Bragg's 'New England' - the birth control pill  [rather oddly so, since everyone knows Quo fans don't get laid!]), it may be short of the level of excellence found in the band's best songs, but nevertheless  - in Big Star-esque style - it's the emotionality of this Norman Blake paean to a besotted denim-clad  groupie that drags you in, pulls you under and makes "The Concept" that rare thing; a timeless enduring classic.

All achieved with no small thanks to those waves of sublime, orgasmic riffs - which are not at all, erm ,,,, 'influenced' by the late great Alex Chilton and the legendary Big Star!

The liner notes to the mighty Big Star Box set Keep an Eye on the Sky - released a few moons back- actually include a piece on Bandwagonesque, (an album that threw the works of a very grateful Big Star right back into the spotlight again after so many long years of sad neglect) that included the line "the album was so in thrall to Chilton, Bell, and company that some critics started calling it "Big Star's 4th"!  .... I'm sure the Fannies were proud to hear that accolade!

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