Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Re. A.C. Marias - turns out it was me that made "One of Our Girls Has Gone Missing" Single of the Week in Melody Maker. February 3rd 1990. And I did the feature too. (Couldn't find that clip). Wonder who did the album? Stubbs, probably, or Oldfield. We used to triple team often, in those days. Or quadruple team. Sometimes the Studs were involved in these multi-pronged campaigns. Divide it up between single, album, interview, lead live review. Next album, if we were still pushing hard (as with e.g. Young Gods), the roles would switch.
Written and raved about a lot of stuff over the years, and some of it's aged better than others. Some doesn't seem as rave-worthy as it did at the time. No indeed.
To an extent you worked with what you were supplied at any given time. The state of the scene fluctuates. (And specifically with Singles columns, sometimes the week it was your turn there was a real scrabble to find anything for the top spot. Other times, I was spoiled for choice. Once I had seven singles of the week).
Doesn't bother me at all, to have been "wrong", to have over-estimated things. I think "hype" is part of the job of the music journalist. Much better to hail excessively and prematurely than to weigh in with judicious, measured, deflationary assessments. Leave that to the newspapers.
But it is interesting, to look back and see what's endured. Not because I believe in the Test of Time. Assuredly, some music is only meant for its moment. Realistically, judged against the scale of Eternity, the most transient, trivial, local pleasure and the "truly lastingly universally important" are barely distinguishable. If you'd really contemplate the vastness and indifference of the universe,you'd never be able to use the word "universal" to describe anything human-related.
Besides, even if Time's test had validity, there's no way you can gauge what's going to make the grade long-term, when you're responding immediately as a real-time week by week journalist.
But it is interesting to look back and see what's faded away versus what proved to be imperishable, in terms of your own life. Judged purely from the vantage point of your own eyes and ears.
A lot of the time, it is a case of "what was I thinking?"
But with "One of Our Girls" , the song still astonishes and enchants. It does seem like a genuine Lost Classic, a should-have-been ....
Although what it should have been, I'm not sure. More than what it was. But a hit? Hardly likely. Some kind of rallying point for those opposed to the positivity prattle of the day. Perhaps.
I guess 154-era Wire meets Harold-Budd-at-his-most-bleached, and sung by the ghost of Sinead's dead twin was about as far from what was chartpop in 1989-1990 as you could get...
Then again Julee Cruise had a Top 20 hit around about this time...
The lyrics to "One of Our Girls Has Gone Missing":
One of our girls has gone missing
We've heard she's left
So where do we go now?
It feels like theft
One of our girls has gone over the wall
Under a wire
She's cut and run
But where is she now?
She's lost her colour and faded away
Left an empty house
And moved into thin air
One of our girls has gone missing
Under a cloud
Will she come back
Or is she too proud?
One of our girls has gone with the wind
And run away
For more than a minute
For more than a day
So one of our birds has flown
Is that so distressing?
She can have her wings
Will she have our blessing?