October 27th, 2014

Extant - Halle Berry

Soul Boys of the Western World

I remember the first time I saw Spandau Ballet. I wasn't into pop music for pretty much the first half of the 1980s, so I suspect Antonia was watching Top of the Pops, and Spandau came on. The song was True. Tony Hadley was wearing a very smart suit (I recall it being grey*), and I remember thinking, hang on, aren't pop stars supposed to be a bit...I dunno, punk? Scruffy?

That was then, this is now. I never got into the whole Duran vs. Spandau thing. Nowadays I like them more or less equally, although I actually, like, own an album by Duran Duran (mind you, I'm thinking of picking up the new Spandau Ballet best of album at some point; or at least putting it on my Christmas wish list).

My copy of Soul Boys of the Western World arrived this morning. I'm finding it a really fascinating insight into both the band, and the time in which they were formed and performing. I mean, I was alive in the late '70s/early '80s, but I was young and not really terribly socially or politically aware. So seeing the genesis and early years of the band set against, for example, the winter of discontent is a real eye opener. (Mind you...I keep wanting to chuck a brick at the TV screen every time bl**dy Thatcher turns up. Good job there are no bricks in the house, as we can't really afford a new TV...)

By the way, I utterly adore this song:

* Well, in this clip - from the Christmas 1983 TOTP - Tony's in a black suit. But the Kemps are in grey. Of course, this might not be the performance I remember, so it's possible my memory might be right...
Pet Shop Boys - Story

Fannish squee!

So, Pet Shop Boys cover version of Always on my mind has been voted the best cover version.

Which admittedly as publicly voted polls go is a bit pointless, but as it's my favourite song by my favourite band (albeit with the pedantic caveat, evident in the "best cover version" thing, that they didn't actually write it. Ahem), leaves me feeling somewhat vindicated by my utter unadulterated love for it.

Here. Have my second favourite remix of it. (I love the bit at 5m27s onwards...)