Saturday, 13 November 2010

Itchy and scratchy

Before I moved to London I used to get the train down a lot to visit my girlfriend and for the journey I'd always get a newspaper or two and a music magazine to read. While some people clearly found a couple of hours on a train a bit of a drag I loved it, especially when they still had smoking carriages. (The same with hospital waiting rooms - there's always someone moaning about the wait, I regard it as a golden opportunity to thoroughly read the papers - once they had the Ashes showing on the telly as well, I could have sat there all day.)

Anyway, back in the day I left a free cd given away with one of my train journey magazines at my girlfriend's flat - generally these cds were poor but on one there was a track that I found utterly beguiling, its appeal heightened because I only got to listen to it every three or four weeks (I never took it back with me for some reason). I always meant to pick up the band's album but before I did the cd was mislaid in a move and I realised I'd forgotten both the track and the band name.

I like having a half remembered track or two to be hunting down at any given time, but as the years went by it occurred to me that I'd probably had it with this one. My attempts to track it down were, it transpires, only hindered by my having a vague recall that the bandname contained the word hospital and that the female vocalist was Scottish.

But, wuffling round the blogosphere the other day I saw a band mentioned in a post and a little lightbulb pinged on above my head. Less than a minute later I was reunited with my long lost track.

The Paradise Motel Derwent River Star

This just leaves me now trying to track down a very brisk reggae track with the vocalist toasting over the top a lyric about "them old, old Europeans" and a Dub track that I can only describe as sounding quaintly science fiction spacey with a very tight whirring noise running through it. I despair of ever finding the Dub track.


  1. Love the article Artog, never heard of this band.

  2. SciFi dubby eh? Might Lee 'Scratch' Perry be a contender?

    I have one of these too, I posted it a while back - it's an old doo-woppy thing that I taped off the Peel show in about 1982 and I have pretty much given up ever finding out for certain who the artist is.

  3. Cheers Drew, I've bought the album and it's sounding very good.

    Davy - It's heavier or somehow fuller than all the Lee Perry I'm familiar with. I heard it round at an old friend's about twenty years ago - she moved away (we both did) but I unexpectedly bumped into her not so long ago and quizzed her. To my disappointment she didn't have a fucking clue what I was going on about. She was my best shot as well.

  4. I've long since given up on finding a dub track I heard 25+ years ago at The Jacquard in Norwich with my good friend Riggsby. It contained the line 'Educate The Nation.' To this day I'll chant the only line I can remember ie 'Educate The Nay-Shon' but it will only ever be a song heard in my head. Unless of course...

  5. Sorry John, can't help you with that...other than a quick google suggesting somebody called Lui Lepke? At least you've got a snippet of the lyrics to go on.

  6. Glad you were finally reunited! Although I guess you must be a Bupa patient if the word 'Motel' made you think of hospitals ;-)

    I often find the chase is a bigger thril than finally getting it. When I was a kid I collected bublegum cards (star wars, planet of the apes etc etc). On limited pocket money I rarely completed the set, but only about 4 or 5 years ago I found someone selling odds for the 70's Superman set at a comic and card mart (pound a pop though). Almost 30 years since I had started that collection I finally finished it, but somehow I felt a little gutted that the chase was over. Can't win huh?!

  7. I've never stayed in one, but I thought motels are normally seedy places?

    I know what you mean about the thrill of the chase - pre-internet I used to love occasionally finding Ronald Searle books in little second hand bookshops but then at a bookfair in York I got a copy of his Rake's Progress and I sort of lost my momentum after that.