As an ideal companion piece to The Best Of The Radio 1 Sessions Volume 1, The Best Of The Mark Goodier Radio 1 Sessions Volume 1 was also a one-off. In 1990, The Evening Show became The Evening Session and Mark Goodier began presenting it, a most eclectic mix of sound and became arguably more diverse than fellow BBC compatriot John Peel. It’s worth noting that many of these songs ended up a brilliant cassette which was given away as a cover-mount with Vox magazine, Christmas 1991 – called Live & Unreleased.
With one exception, each band have submitted sleeve note comments:
The Farm – Hearts ‘n’ Minds: “My aim is to become the Kiss of the ’90s. We’ve always hated dance music and those Julius Caesar haircuts were just a regrettable bid for popularity. The real Farm is all about bizarre facial decorations, meaningless lyrics, excruciating guitar riffs and a high ratio of phallic gesticulations. Think Farm: think glamour.”
Jesus Jones – Someone To Blame: “An attractively obscure choice, a song that had previously been overlooked and not done justice. The session version reflected our interests at the time better than when the song appeared on Liquidizer. The fact that we were at our least incompetent here also helped the decision!” (Mike Edwards)
Milltown Brothers – Sally Anne: “This is our favourite track.” (Matt Nelson)
Paris Angels – Oh Yes: “We thought this would be a good one to include because it’s the original version of the song. There’s more of a groove to it than the one we did for the album.”
EMF – I Believe: “We formed the band at the end of ’89 and I Believe was the first song we wrote together. The video is filmed in the Forest of Dean, which takes us back to our roots too. So it’s just the track that started it all.” (Ian Dench)
Spirea X – Chlorine Dream: “A symphony of sound set around out-of-tune vocals, this is the first recording of Chlorine Dream. Don’t go near the water!” (Jim Beattie)
Poppy Factory – Stars?: “…was written six months ago. It screamed radio airplay. It was more Poppy Factory escapism, really.” (Jock Cotton)
Birdland – Wake Up Dreaming: “We wanted Exit to be on this CD but our manager chose Wake Up Dreaming. It’s an old song which we decided to hold back until we could get it a lot better. We did a straight version for the session. I wanted it to be more like Blondie than it came out. It doesn’t mean much – just a pop song, basically.” (Lee Vincent)
The Real People – Wonderful: “We did four tracks on the session. I think this was a pretty good choice – it’s great live, a real ballsy track. I wrote it in our manager’s house before recording the album. It started off as a different track at first, but me and my brother took the idea further and worked it into a new song.” (Chris Griffiths)
Banderas – Don’t Let That Man: “We thought it sounded better live than on the album. It had more of the feel we had intended, which was slightly more surly.”
Linden Tree – Walk Your Way: “This song hopefully says something to someone about not getting inside your head too much for what you’ve done or didn’t do in love and life.”
The Dylans – Ocean Wide: “…is a song about existentialism and more precisely JP Sartre’s book Nausea which was a major influence. My mind is not a paddling pool.” (Colin Gregory)
Fatima Mansions – You’re A Rose: “This is included to commemorate the first and last attempt by The Fatima Mansions to fit into the ossified British way of doing things.” (Cathal Coughlan)
Chapterhouse – Breather: “It’s got the full Chapterhouse sound with two vocalists and three guitars. It’s faster than most of the stuff we do, so it’s a good track live. The Goodier session was about the fourth time we’d recorded it because we were trying to get the right sound. It was just after we’d been touring so I think it sounds pretty good on the session.” (Andrew Sheriff)
The Frank & Walters – Michael: “We chose Michael because it’s the track we thought sounded the best on the session and it’s the first one we ever heard on the radio that means something to us.”
Cud: Oh No Won’t Do: “…started as a list of interesting sounding places in the developing world set to a Cud-like rhythm. It kind of metamorphosed almost inevitably into yet another obtuse Cud commentary on the state of affairs somewhere sometime. We like to play this one live.”
The Charlatans – (No One) Not Even The Rain: No sleeve notes provided.
The selection of “exclusive and unreleased recordings” kicks off with The Farm’s Hearts ‘n’ Minds. Originally their debut single as far back as 1984, the track was a strong opener to the Spartacus album and this version retains the baggy groove of the ’91 cut. Plenty cool people poked fun at the album back then; it’s garish supermarket / washing up powder sleeve was an easy target but in retrospect it’s an excellent crossover LP perfectly balanced on the indie dance axis. I saw The Farm play at Féile 1991; part of an excellent Friday night line-up that also included Into Paradise, The Golden Horde, The Mock Turtles, Power Of Dreams, Ride, That Petrol Emotion, Happy Mondays plus a surprise impromptu teatime set by Black Francis. A most fondly-remembered occasion. Next are Jesus Jones with the nagging Someone To Blame before a superb version of the Milltown Brothers’ plaintive Sally Anne. This ace baggy sequence continues with the Paris Angels’ smoking Oh Yes.
Following up Unbelievable with I Believe was a funny move for EMF. This version from November 1990 contains enough swagger and attitude to make you get up and dance. We start to shimmer with the next number, Spirea X’s Chlorine Dream. We are now sliding deep into Forever Changing territory with the Poppy Factory’s remarkable Stars, a great and lost indie dance classic. Oh that Madchester guitar! Check out my mix 18 Forever for more of the same. Still hanging on in 1991 were Birdland; Wake Up Dreaming is typical of the sound of the self-titled Lazy album. Better are The Real People – a favourite of Peter Harrison from Brookside (he wore their t-shirt) – and the wavy, heartfelt Wonderful. I did say that the show was eclectic – next are Banderas and the ripe soulful pop of Don’t Let That Man. And then the most obscure Linden Tree & the moody strum of Walk Your Way.
Released on Situation Two, The Dylans’ self-titled debut album was more of the era’s more psychedelic LPs. Ocean Wide see them bring the organ to the fore. “This is Mr Blank calling…” – so begin a rather subdued version of one of the many highlights from Fatima Mansions’ Viva Dead Ponies. You’re A Rose was released as a single in 1991, coming with a limited edition art print. Also flying the tricolour are The Frank & Walters who recorded their session around the same time as EP1 hit the shops. Two SOTW in NME and three in Melody Maker. Michael remains a revelation of the absurd, a rush and a triumph (20). Over to Shoegazer 93 re: Chapterhouse’s Breather: “The rush of distortion, the frantic drumming, breathy, gliding vocals, the main riff, the intro volume swell, the guitar effects, the melody, oh, this is just Shoegaze perfection!” Moving on – it’s Cud and the catchy Oh No Won’t Do. Lastly, The Charlatans and the thrillingly miserable (No One) Not Even The Rain dating from 15 October 1991. “The first and lonely days have come…”
Poppy Factory – Stars
Milltown Brothers – Sally Anne
Lest we forget
The Frank & Walters – Michael
Ah Jim Beattie ! I don’t think I ever owned a Spirea X album (I’m sure whatever I’m thinking of is being mixed up with Ultra Vivid Scene!), but I do have the debut album of the lo-fi Spector-ish Adventures In Stereo which I think I heard on Peel or Steve Lamacq back in the day and dispatched a postal order to Creeping Bent records for ! I must dig it out later ! The reception of Radio1 in Cork at the time was entirely weather-dependent but we managed !
Hi Wes, thanks for your comment. Spirea X’s Fireblade Skies LP was a purchase from the Comet Sale, a legendary 2 January event that saw big queues outside the Dublin & Cork premises. Chlorine is great….like an updated Byrds if they were 50+ years of age. I did pick up the Adventures In Stereo debut; like you it was a mail order – think maybe Alans in Wigan – used to send them off bank drafts.
Similar experience in New Ross for Radio 1 reception. Moving to Dublin in 1991 meant I could split the Cablelink connection and connect via the tuner for crystal clear John Peel and Evening Session stuff.