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This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… some songs I was listening to in Autumn 1984 October 3, 2015

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.

I’ve no idea why but for some reason a lot of songs I heard in 1984 have stuck in my head and become a sort of short hand for Autumn. I was in third level, my first year there, in a draughty and damp building not a million miles from Leinster House – though not TCD, learning how to be a teacher (never completed the course, which may have been a blessing in disguise). So if the weather starts to turn, as it has in the last week or so, cooler, breezier, damper. The sun sets a lot earlier this is kind of the music that comes to mind.

The Sound Cellar was just down the way on Nassau Street presided over by Tommy Tighe who seemed to cast a jaundiced eye on anything that wasn’t metal. That October I won an album on some metal show on a pirate radio station (all those terms seem almost unbelievably quaint at this remove) by erm… essentially unknown… continental metallers Bodine and I remember going to the Sound Cellar to collect it and at the same time having a bit of money because of my birthday in October and purchasing Wilder by the Teardrop Explodes and New Order’s Power Corruption and Lies. ‘Do you really like this sort of stuff?’ asked Tommy – or words to that effect – with evident bafflement. I kind of nodded and he passed across the offending items, and perhaps it was my imagination but he seemed loath to let the Bodine album go. Fair enough, credit the man with some prescience, some years later I sold it second hand at Macs in George’s Street Arcade having partly foresworn metal, though I did manage during the age of blogspot (c.2007 to 2010) to – ahem – ‘acquire’ copy. And if you don’t like Dark Star Rising, well, good for you. I see that as the sort of link back to the fairly, though not entirely, uncomplex stuff I was listening to exhaustively two years previously – which we shall never speak of again.

But this was still a time of big hair and not a lot of money and chance findings in second hand record shops. I doubt I purchased more than a handful of new records between 1982 and 1989, there just wasn’t any good reason to do so – discounts and second hand were there. A target rich environment, so to speak.

It’s funny looking at the list. Metal was almost gone, as it would be for quite a few years, though the steely reboot of it that The Lords of the New Church produced sort of snuck in. Electronica just about making an appearance in the form of New Order. Rush was on their new wave/Police trip. There was more, but these were albums I had, that I went out and made the effort to beg, buy or borrow that Summer or Autumn – or in extremis taped from the radio. US punk too. Not much Irish there, bar Blue in Heaven and Microdisney (I have a feeling Alastair once of this parish loaned me that, and the Blue in Heaven single too). The Cocteau’s had arrived (well they’d already another album or two out, but this was the one which really went to town). Lloyd Cole in there too – though I was never entirely gone on his voice, and let’s not even talk of the Icicle Works in that respect (good song though and of a piece with the ‘Big Music’ of the Waterboys too) and bits and pieces from the 1970s, notably the Only Ones, though the album I got was Remains, a sort of compilation/round-up of their material. I loved the Siouxsie album – really did. Kind of still do.

I’m entertained at this remove by how morose so much of it was. Trembling on the edge of goth, some might say, not least with the Lords of the New Church and the Cult and Siouxsie and… But that’s a whole different year…

Turn on the News – Husker Du

All the Daughters (Of Her Fathers House) – Icicle Works

Culture Bunker – The Teardrop Explodes

Age of Consent – New Order

Church Not Made With Hands- The Waterboys

The Body Electric – Rush

Lorelei – Cocteau Twins

Black Star Rising – Bodine

Dreamtime – The Cult

So. Central Rain – R.E.M.

Dazzle – Siouxsie & The Banshees

Forest Fire (Extended Version) – Lloyd Cole & The Commotions

Before Famine – Microdisney

Julie Cries (Single) – Blue in Heaven

The Seducer – Lords of the New Church

My Way of Giving – The Only Ones


1. Michael Carley - October 5, 2015

A few years later, I discovered that the Sound Cellar had a very good blues section (I assume because of the amount that had crossed over into rock and metal). It ended up with me not even asking what I wanted: Tommy Tighe would just tell me, and he was always right.


WorldbyStorm - October 5, 2015

He’s a good guy I think. Very knowledgeable. And as I was saying above, he knew, somehow he knew, that Bodine was not long for my record collection 😉


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