Friday, December 27, 2013

The Bluebells - The Bluebells

This year marks the thirtieth anniversary release of The Bluebells, the debut EP from the Scottish band of the same name. The group was made up of Robert Hodgens (guitar), Kenneth McCluskey (vocals and harmonica), Dave McCluskey (drums), Russell Irvin (guitar), Craig Gannon (guitar), Lawrence Donegan (bass) and Neil Baldwin (bass).

Side one opens with “Cath”, a bouncy pop song about a deceptive girlfriend. As the first single, it peaked at number 62 in the UK. The first place I heard this one was on the eighth volume of the Rhino Records Just Can’t Get Enough: New Wave Hits of the 80’s collection.

“Everybody’s Somebody’s Fool” is up next. I like the way the harmonica and guitars work in harmony here.

“Patriots Game”, the B-side to the second single, is a beautifully moving ballad about a young soldier going off to war.

Side two starts with “Sugar Bridge (It Will Stand)”. This second single went to number 72 on the UK charts.

Things slow down one more time with “Aim in Life”. It is a solemn song about a young person who has passed away in her prime.

This EP is very rare, having only appeared on vinyl. As such, I had to dig around once more on the Internet to find a place to give it a listen (I managed to find it over on YouTube). Some of the songs do appear on the Bluebells’ singles collection, but they appear to be re-recorded versions. I would love to see this one released in its original format on digital download as I found it to be a very good introduction to the band.

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