New Warm Skin – GMack Remix

It’s taken me a few days to get around to listen to this. I like it. It’s very expertly done. But…I kept waiting for my fix of the chorus to arrive. At least just one time! And…the best part of Mick’s synths are taken away as a consequence, because they lay behind Jim’s vocal in the chorus.

As much as I liked it, they took away the best part of the tune for me.

I mean, duh…I love the verses too (Kerr lyricist uber fangirl that I am) – but for me – the hit…the melodic FIX comes from the chorus, and the fade out repetition of “Is this a war? Is the is a god?”

Maybe one day I’ll have a go at one of these remix things myself. Lol. As if I’d be any good!

Might have been fun to have mixed the demo version to the full recorded studio version. Mix up some of Jim’s rewritten lyrics. Just a thought…

Where Did The Fool Go?

It’s a strange thing, research. You can be looking for one thing and will unearth something else entirely!

Take a song like Here Comes The Fool, for example. It makes its first known live appearance shortly after the release of Life In A Day and is played at gigs in the summer.


Here Comes The Fool – June 1979

Late summer, off they go into the Monmouthshire countryside to record Real To Real Cacophony – and hang out with Bowie, Iggy, appear as guest artist on Iggy’s Soldier album (on the track Play It Safe) and have fun with mushrooms, minxes and manchego…


Here Comes The Fool – Aug ’79

By October they are back on the road and Here Comes the Fool is a regular on the set. The musicality of it is well developed and strong. Jim has played with the lyrics…they now seem fairly well scripted and fairly different to how they appeared early in the summer.


Here Comes The Fool – Nov. ’79

It remains a staple in the set until the spring of 1980 when we start to see compositions that come into the set that are then on the Empires And Dance album.


Here Comes The Fool – Jan 1980

So, a curious being is Here Comes The Fool. It starts tentatively…quickly makes itself a band and crowd favourite – yet never makes it to get a studio recording for Real To Real Cacophony – or even to appear on a B side. I am a strange one in that I defend Veldt when many other SM fans don’t have much time for it. But given that…it seems to me that THAT could have been the place for Here Comes The Fool on R2RC – to have replaced Veldt with it (as much as that pains me to say that).

What do you guys think? Do you think that should have been the case?

Answers in the comments, if you wanna…

One of “…Fool’s” very final outings from March 23rd, 1980.

I added the different versions of the song because it seemed a good thing to be able to hear its progression and subtle change – esp. with the lyrics. Jim was a devil for it then – but he was free to keep morphing it as it was never captured in the studio, hence he felt free to keep medling (I’m assuming?). Ultimately, it didn’t deviate a lot, and it seems a shame now to be consigned to history. Still, it sounds as if Jim grew tired of “taking his hand” (The Fool’s hand, I mean – Lyric alteration over time from “Well here comes the fool – you can take his hand” to “Here comes the fool – don’t wanna take his hand”).

Poor “Fool”.

Bonfire Of The Memories

It was bonfire night, 1980, and Jim recalls it like it’s 2016! (Coincidentally…my first ever visit to Glasgow was that night – Bonfire night, 2016…I had a bankside view of the Clyde from my hotel window and I could see fireworks going off all over from the view I had of the city there. It was magical!)

I left a comment on his post about the significance – for a Johnny-come-lately like myself of bootlegs and other (more official) live recordings from the time. They are like gold dust and little pockets of time travel.

Well, you guys know (those of you who may have taken some interest in the blog for a while – I dare say that’s just me! Lol) the things I have done to highlight them? The Weekend WhirliGIG being one example of my way of showcasing that stuff.

These kind of recordings are so precious to me. Had we had the technology we have now available back then? Imagine how much of this stuff would be preserved?! Still, that is part of what makes it so very precious. The fact it’s so rare, for one, and the other is capturing a band in (what is STILL) their formative years…oh, but what years! And how bloody accomplished they were already! I’m sure JIm would tell me “no”. That even then, they were still amateurish. I’d tell him to “do wan” if he did! Lol

As an example…here is a fucking BLISTERING version of I Travel from the time. And just as I imagine it sounded to his ears that night at the City Hall in Glasgow…listen to that crowd at the end of the song. And that’s in London, not Glasgow!

I’ve done it so the clip starts at I Travel…but you can always go back and listen to it all.

I’ll add a link to Jim’s FB post as well for your perusal.

A Look To The Future – Glasgow, 1980

The projection to a Glasgow of 1980, in a film made of the city in 1971. Given the fact that we are told in the film that the task ahead was quite…monumental…did they really think it would be done by 1980? I’m sure quite a bit was in place by 1980, but it seemed some mistakes were made and needed rethinking and replanning.

It is almost unrecognisable to my visitor’s eye – having now visited the city several times in the past couple of years. So very strange to see “The Duke” without his roadworks cone adorning his “heed”. The Kelvingrove still stands tall, of course. And the last time I went, I explored the Mitchell Library for the first time…and it’s stunning. Then there is the tragedy of the fires and damage done to the School of Art. And change still goes on. The last visit, George Square was surrounded by scaffolding. Not sure what was going on there but perhaps I’ll see it soon?

I was fascinated watching this. How much it has all changed. And…the signs around the city (today’s Glasgow). It just continually rings true…PEOPLE MAKE GLASGOW – and they do. And that is the thing I get most on each visit…the pride and optimism from the Weegies themselves. It feels like a city of now. Vibrant. Vital. Cultural. It’s “on point” as they say these days.

Every time I leave Glasgow, I never find myself thinking, “Oh thank fuck for that!” (as I tend to do with London) – I’m usually feeling a little forlorn and thinking, “Aawww, I like this place. I hope it isn’t too long before I get to come back.”

Minds Music Monday – Twist/Run/Repulsion – Isolated Elements

Back nearly FOUR YEARS ago now, when I took those tentative steps into exploring the Simple Minds back catalogue and having quickly listened to Life In A Day and Real To Real Cacophony to move onto Empires And Dance and fall instantly in love…it was Twist/Run/Repulsion that was the first track I heard that absolutely blew my socks off. Oh…it was just…the summing up of the parts. Like all the elements of what was being done by the boys (to me, anyway) finally converged for a piece of perfection.

For many early SM fans (and I mean fans of early SM music, rather than long-time fans), as much of a masterpiece as Empires And Dance is to them, Twist/Run/Repulsion is a “bridge too far”. NOT FOR ME! It is absolutely EVERYTHING I love about that time in music, and the time in Simple Minds’ career.

It’s an unsettling piece, granted. It isn’t fluid and smooth. It jutters. The saxophones are jarring and uncomfortable. Pure Bowie on Neukoln wailing sax fest.

And then there’s Jim and those words. A completely different lyric to what was on the demo (which is equally as good). I love that he would just completely rewrite a song having demoed it. And…how he performs that vocal I will never know!

Anyway…here is a version of it posted on YouTube last week that tried to separate out some of the parts of the song…isolating some of the French verse, the sax, and the “chorus” backing vocal. The song continues to astound me. I will love it until my dying day. This version highlights all the components going into a Simple Minds song of the period.

Oh, f*** they were good. And still so! And still so…

Magazine Clippings – 1980, 1981 – Gig Reviews, Band News and Tour And New Music Info

The first snippet is dated Dec 6th, 1980. More tour dates for SM…it’s starting to wear Brian McGee out already…

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Next – a review of their gig at Tiffany’s on March 1st, 1981 (printed in March 14th edition of NME). Brian’s final gig with them in Glasgow. Why they get labeled as being “pretentious” with their music at this point, I will never know. Anyway, the review ends unltimately positive. Thank fark for that!

The description of Jim walking onto the stage is utterly delicious. Uber cool…sex on legs. Geez, I wish! (Why was I only 10 years old and stuck in Sydney? *weeps into hands*)

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Then…the parting of the ways with Brian and the ringing in Kenny Hyslop for his short tenure. (Reported on in the NME, dated July 25th, 1981)

Then finally, info on Sister Feelings Call being (from Oct 16th 1981) sold as a separate entitiy to Sons And Fascination, as opposed to them being twinned together in a package.

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Tossing The Coin – Real To Real Cacophony Advert And Reviews – 1979, 1980

I’m putting these two snippets together, as they are both to do with Real To Real Cacophony. One advert from a copy of the NME dated Feb 9th, 1980, with two glowing reviews from David McCullough and Ian Cranna (spelled incorrectly in the ad) – as well as a dedicated (and horribly scathing!) review from Paul Du Noyer in the NME, dated November 24th, 1979.

Mr Du Noyer…I’ve got to hand it to you, you didn’t sugar-coat things! But you also had enough self-awareness to take in that maybe you did lack some heart not to get any emotion from R2R. It isn’t all doodling and pretentiousness! Yes! It was dystopian in its outlook…but, fuck me! How many other 20 year olds were making music like that? It’s a travelogue precursor to Empires And Dance. Glorious in its objective to be so left field, so far removed from Life In A Day as to almost come from a different band just NINE MONTHS later. Listen to Citizen, just for starters. Fans take the piss out of Veldt…but I adore it. Genuinely! It has an exotic air to it. It’s an aural jungle…with a humidity and a sweat. Factory – seriously, man? You get NOTHING from Factory? You don’t know what it’s saying? Fuck! It’s a fucking Lawry painting as a song, you fuck! JESUS! He probably never “got” art, either, this guy. He says SM’s music expresses no emotion…yet he sounds like a fucking automaton! Scar…IT’S JG BALLARD, bellend! Sorry…people who don’t get their early stuff just endlessly get on my wick. Especially pricks like this bloke, accusing them of being overly clever-clever and up their own arse, when he’s just too much of a blinkered automaton not to see it. Dick.

Sorry. Rant over. Anyway. Enjoy. Lol