18 November 2015
Thirty years ago today – 18 November 1985 – Scottish brothers William and Jim Reid, with a little help from their friends, drummer Bobby Gillespie (the future charismatic frontman of Primal Scream) and bassist Douglas Hart, released their dazzling landmark debut album Psychocandy.
14 songs and 37 minutes of Beach Boys bubblegum pop drenched in noisy feedback,
a sonic attack similar to Phil Spector‘s wall-of-sound technique and performed with a Velvet Underground attitude & matching looks. A sound never heard before. A catchy clever mix never done before. Lyrically you got what all teenagers of every generation sing about: sex, drugs, and boredom. Never Understand, one of the highlights and also one of the album’s singles is a perfect example of what The Jesus and Mary Chain were all about 30 years ago…
Last August I saw the brothers performing Psychocandy in full, followed by a greatest hits compilation, in Belgium. Two remarkable things: it sounded even more poppy than before, also less rebellious (well, they’re 30 years older) and it proved again (as on their records) that they grew quite fast into excellent songwriters after their sonically innovative debut. Yes, we all had double fun that night. Now, let’s celebrate. Here’s the cake…
(Expanded version / #1 – #14 = original tracklist)
Jesus and Mary in Belgium (Lokerse Feesten Festival) last summer… (pics: TUTV!)