Lazycame (William Reid) ‘K To Be Lost’

William Reid split up The Jesus And Mary Chain live on stage in America in 1998. Given the nature of the brother’s relationship and their ongoing love affair with feedback and booze, it’s remarkable they lasted that long really. I couldn’t do 15 years in a band, drunk and whatever else, with earsplitting volume night after night with any of my brothers without blood being spilt. William retreated into a solo project called Lazycame, releasing an album called Finbegin and a couple of singles. The album was passed on by Alan McGee, partly because William wanted the cover to feature a picture of himself with a hard-on. McGee must have said no partly because of the music though. It’s the most unfocussed, patchy, lo-fi, scatty, scratchy, irritating, and almost unlistenable records I’ve got or ever heard. At times you want to shout at the stereo ‘Fer fuck’s sake man, tune the guitar and play a song’. It goes on for ages, stopping and starting, out-of-tune, drifting in and out. One man with a tape recorder, stoned, pressing record, then forgetting what he’s supposed to be doing. I quite like it. Someone at Amazon says ‘It’s not for everyone’- it’s probably really not for anyone.

However William could still get it together when he wanted to. This song K To Be Lost (as in, it’s OK to be lost, kind of a mission statement) is a cracker, so good it turned up in slightly more polished form on the Sister Vanilla album. It’s still gorgeously lo-fi, with typical guitars, cheap drum machine and loopy keyboards, but he pulls it all together. I’ve just read that last sentence back- I mean it all in a good way.

When they reformed a couple of years back, some wag suggested they had to do it due to Jim’s battle with his hairline and William’s battle with his waistline. They carried it off though- shades and black clothes can do wonders for the middle aged indie rockstar.

k to be lost.mp3

Jim Reid ‘Dead End Kids’

Bagging Area featured Sister Vanilla, Jim and William Reid’s sister Linda’s band a short while back, so I thought I’d post this solo single by Jim from 2006. It’s JAMC-style scuzzy indie rock, a three chord Velvet’s riff and ‘ooooh’ backing vox but Jim carries it off with a bit of gutter panache (‘It’s just like a grape in a bottle, it’s wine today, it’s piss tomorrow) and a bit of cliche (‘I’m a rock ‘n’ roll amputation’). Jim did some pretty good covers around this time too- If You Gotta Go (by The Byrds and Dylan, can’t remember which one wrote it) and an electronic version of The Saints I’m Stranded, which was excellent. Suppose to complete this post-JAMC mini-series I’ll have to look for something postable by William’s solo project Lazycame now, something so ramshackle even Alan McGee refused to put it out.

01 Dead End Kids.wma

Beth Orton ‘Bobby Gentry’

Beth Orton, the comedown queen. I’ve got bits and bobs by her-Trailor Park because of the Weatherall productions and She Cries Your Name, some songs she did with Johnny Marr, the Two Lone Swordsmen remixes, and The Other Side Of Daybreak, an album of off-cuts, remixes and extras from Daybreak. This was on it and it’s stunning. Starts out with lovely acoustic guitar, great husky vocals, and at the first chorus these beautiful swooping strings come in, and stay throughout the next 4 minutes. It also contains a brilliant line in the second verse- ‘Collecting dead rainbows from puddles and mires, and taking them home to warm by the fire’, which is a bit hippyish but hits me every time. No idea why it’s called Bobby Gentry but it adds to the overall brilliance of this track.

05 Bobby Gentry.wma

The Special AKA ‘What I Like Most About You Is Your Girlfriend’

I can’t get this out of my head at the moment- superb piece of left of centre pop music. After Terry, Neville and Lynval left The Specials it should have been game over, but Jerry Dammers soldiered on to make the In The Studio album, which reportedly drove everyone left in the band, and those new to the band, crackers. It took ages to record, Jerry’s perfectionism in overdrive, people coming and going but contains some belting tunes, not least this one and the life-affirming joy that is Free Nelson Mandela. This song is a belter, showing Dammers sense of humour was intact, and features some amazing horn playing by Rico. There’s a very funny video as well, with Jerry as an alien turning up in a bar, talking to a sailor while eyeing his girl, as The Jazz Defektors spiral and pirouette on the club’s dancefloor. This is tip-top stuff- ‘Your girlfriend has only got one fault, that’s you’.

17 What I Like Most About You Is Your Girlfriend [Album Version].wma