Friday, 23 March 2012

23rd March

1967: Because nobody knew any better back then, you get some highly expressive behaviour at the mike on these early Pops. Manfred Mann's Mike d'Abo's doing a lot of pointing and proto-Flick Colby expressive acting out of lyrics here. The toy drummer and Manfred's own hat/beard/whistling style are notable touches too.

1978: "Remember the night Kate Bush burst onto TV? When this aired it was a sensation!" Steve Wright as trustworthy as ever, as including repeats this was Wuthering Heights' fifth appearance on Pops. It is, to a vague extent, based on the even more famous video, alongside some curious bird wing-like motions. Someone forgot to remove some bit of set dressing at the back, which spoils the illusion a tiny bit.

1983: As referred to the other day, here be the more famous Orange Juice appearance, replete with members staggering drunkenly all over the place, experimental provocateur Jim Thirlwell miming sax and, according to Edwyn's own official biography, "the pleasure of performing the song on Top Of The Pops neutered by the pain of Legs & Co ripping up tissue paper whilst dancing on an adjoining stage". Will Zoo never be given their proper due? Besides which, look how much paper they've pointlessly got through off-camera. In fact Zoo were all over the show this week with their extreme literalism, firstly with boxing gloves on as JoBoxers seem to be filmed from miles away, lest the power of the urchin soul stomp dislodge something, and then indulging in some sort of country roundel while Big Country bluster away and Stuart Adamson breaks into some sort of pleasant knee-lifting dance in his white jeans while making his guitar sound like bagpipes. By the time Altered Images show up the place is a mess for the streamers. Unlike Grogan, who wants to watch Nick Heyward when he's being all sombre and grownup and meaningful looking in close-ups? Not the man looking for an escape route after 33 seconds, that's for sure. And hark, who's that just visible begrudingly sidestepping off to Duran Duran's right? Ah, Zoo, how you existed without anyone remembering.

1989: Having got Lisa Stansfield up front, Coldcut must have not known what to do with themselves. Answer: a big daft hat, a big bass and a big soft mallet to hit the samplers with. Isn't that potentially dangerous?

1995: These probably aren't the circumstances under which Toni Halliday expected to try and creep out the entire viewing public in a roundabout friendly fashion, but teaming with Leftfield and in front of a bass drum about as big as she is she still dares you to ask if she'll ever actually play that guitar she has strapped on.

2001: When we first see Muse Matt Bellamy is already on his knees. And he actually seems to be playing in live, with narry a thought of feedback resultant. If you watch closely as he puts the guitar behind his head and then heads towards Chris Wolstenholme he's brought his own special effect too.

1 comment:

Grk! said...

No, you're supposed to call Jim Foetus a "noise terrorist"! Or something.