Starting with that cross-stick snare beat from Brian and killer Dan bass line – it has a groove!
Possibly one of my most favourite Mick synth pieces. There’s a level of maturity to it. Then those sharp little wails from Charlie’s guitar while that fantastic little riff plays just under those wails.
Then Jim…not afraid to repeat the use of lyrics in two separate songs on ONE album that actually has that line in its title also…comes in with that verse:
Real to real
Fact to fact
Nothing moving happening
The waiting room
Limbo can burn
But the original sin
The incentive to learn
I mean – WHAAAA?! He writes so dark and powerful.
I get the impression that he felt (and possibly still feels) years down the line, it was all too dark then. No!! It was a different kind of dark. To me it is, anyway. It’s story-telling…not self-pity, or morose, or maudlin. It’s just matter-of-fact and kind of unblinking…but not EMO. It’s not that kind of “I hate myself today” kind of stuff, more just a “look what dark times we live in” but there is a “BUT HEY! That doesn’t have to be us!” That part is not so obvious. But it’s there. IT’S THERE!
There is a light to their music. It was…(I am bad at analogies) like a child’s night light to begin with (Life In A Day). It flickered sometimes (the more…Boomtown Rats pastiche sounding things on Life In A Day), but then it got stronger. Became a regular 60W bulb in a bedroom. Perhaps it wasn’t even that warm, bright white light of the regular filament globe…but one of those coloured lights my brother loved using in his room in the late 70s. Red, blue, BLACK! Lol. A black light!
Oh, that is early Simple Minds to a T! A black light! Thank you, Quince (my brother – real name Gary…but has been Quince since about 1980!) for using those lights so I could arrive at that phrase for them! 🙂
Premonition exudes “black light”! Even the art piece I made for it has it. Jim really liked that one too. And shared it on the SMO wall. I tried to symbolise that showering metal “raining and pouring” down when I made it.
The most disturbing line in it is the “hole in my head / where the creature has crawled”. That’s BLACK! Not even sure there is any light to be gleaned from that one!
It’s just a perfect concoction of groove, narrative, (dare I say?) politics, and that wonderful black light!
And from such baby boys. It is what is most astonishing. Again and again. The words are simple…but laced with meaning. Heavy.
God I just love, love, love Jim Kerr as a songwriter. I would give him 50 Novello’s. Why it took them SSSOOOOOO long to award him with one, I will never know!
The BFI (British Film Institute) next week are showing Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. I’ve NEVER seen it on the big screen, but I have seen it several times on video and DVD. There are parts of Premonition that blend in so well to the visuals to that film. Such an “industrial” tale.
Seeing their performance of it at the Hurrah’s Club in 1979…it was the first live clip I watched and my jaw hit the floor. My gob had never been so smacked! I was in love!!! It was another thing that cemented my “in” on this band and made me crave being the right age to have experienced all that early stuff as it was happening.
I’m finding it hard not to digress with this one…but…just listen to it. It’s ART! It should have given Real To Real Cacophony a much higher standing in the music-loving public eye. I mean…in a time of Bowie, Can, Kraftwerk, and La Dusseldorf, how R2R could somehow be deemed TOO experimental? Just…it’s NUTS!
Even among Minds fans…it is only ever really the “early days” purists who seem to appreciate it. Perhaps there is the odd fan like me, who is also into their more latter day stuff that LOVES stuff like R2R. But we are few. Well, it seems that way.
The only “in summary” I can make is…JUST LISTEN TO IT! Seek out the Hurrah’s Club performance…search this blog. You’ll find it! This time I’m going to link to the Rockpalast Cologne 1982 version. If for no other reason than to watch Jim whack himself in the head twice, delivering those “hole in my head” lines. Oh, and a bit of mic stand fondling. Yum yum! Enjoy!
And that is why I love…Premonition.