1985 and All That

So whilst I was busy buying godawful records by members of The Quo, at the same time I was racking up some unintentional points with Britannia Music.

Long-term readers may remember that I mentioned this particular company once before. In the mid-1980s, anytime you opened a weekend newspaper, a leaflet would invariably fall out, advertising Britannia’s 3 for £20 introductory offer, which I have to admit this teenage brain fell for.

Having succumbed, they would send you a booklet every month, detailing all of their wares (of which you had to buy a certain amount within a certain amount of time or…well, actually, as these were the days where you paid for any postal purchases by cheque, I’m not sure what the “or..” was. They’d tell my parents??) and bigging up their Album of The Month.

And here’s where the real money-spinner was for them: they just assumed that you would want to buy the Album of the Month. If you didn’t, you had to tick a box on a form and post it back to them by a certain date. Miss that cut off point, and suddenly you were the proud owner of…well, you’ll see.

You know me by now. I ended up with some stuff that I would not have ordinarily bought. Like this:

Go-West

Go West – Don’t Look Down

and this…

spandau-ballet-the-singles-collection-cd-usa-391101-MLA20268255688_032015-F

Spandau Ballet – Highly Strung

…which contains one of the most cringe-worthy lyrics ever:

“She used to be a diplomat, but now she’s down the laundromat”

Although I can’t really complain, as it did mean I owned this, which is an absolutely belting New Romantic classic:

Spandau Ballet – To Cut a Long Story Short

Both of these inadvertent purchases would, in the fullness of time, actually prove their worth. I’ll explain that later.

So that’s my excuse for owning those. I have no such excuse, nor do I think I need one, for owning this:

big_country-the_crossing(5)

…which I intentionally bought, not so that I owned any of their guitars-as-bagpipes records (if you don’t know what I mean by that, then go YouTube “In a Big Country”), but so that I owned this, which I still adore to this day (and I don’t care what you think):

Big Country – Chance

I also bought this:

R-2058375-1358002607-6384_jpeg

…a collection of tracks by bands who had played at Live Aid, mostly because, if memory serves, it was only £1.99, but also because it contained this (and again, I don’t care what you think about me liking this either):

The Boomtown Rats – I Don’t Like Mondays

Has there been a greater record written about a shooting spree at a school? I think not, and let’s face it, there’s been plenty of opportunities for somebody to have a go at writing one.

But wait. Here comes the good bit.

Yet again, I can snatch victory from the jaws of defeat by giving you this brilliant piece of Japanese pop, which samples the piano bit at the start of “…Mondays” (and, whilst we’re at it, the German bit from the start of  “Pretty Fly (For a White Guy)” by The Offspring, which in turn was sampling Def Leppard’s “Rock of Ages” which…heck, we could be here all day if I carry on). (By the way, you should watch the Def Leppard video, it is unintentionally, bum-wigglingly, hilarious. Spinal Tap was spot on.)

Anyway, if you only click one link on this blog, I urge you to make it this one. You won’t regret it:

Splurge_album

Puffy AmiYumi – Call Me What You Like

See? Told you.

More soon.

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Published by

Jez

On Twitter: @atastehistory or me (where you're more likely to get a reply and a follow back): @jezbionic or by email at: dubioustaste26@gmail.com

4 thoughts on “1985 and All That”

  1. There is much more to like here than you let on. Early Spandau Ballet is great, and Big Country was my first great love, even if it only lasted through Steeltown. I adore Puffy AmiYumi. A great Jellyfish connection there. If you don’t know the song Wild Girls on Circuit, give it a go. One of the gals’ early singles.

    1. Ah Brian, you’re not wrong. Some of the early Spandau singles are good (but not as good as “To Cut a Long Story Short” and they may pop up here sooner or later. As for Big Country: I may have bought The Crossing for “Chance”, but I’m in no way saying I didn’t enjoy the bagpipes. Besides, I figured you’d be covering them soon enough in your ABC of Singles over at your place, so I wanted to get in with my favourite first! Also, your leaping to the defence of Spandau and Big Country – bands often described as “guilty pleasures” – is exactly the sort of reaction I want! Cheers for the Puffy AmiYumi tip too by the way – will see if I can locate a copy somewhere.

  2. Will download that Puffy tune later today after work. And that Britannia 3 concept reminds me of something similar we had here in Germany in the 80’s: “Bertelsmann Buchclub” … and you could rather release yourself from the Foreign Legion than getting out of said ‘club’, believe me!

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