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Thursday, 19 April 2018

Well It Seems So Real

More from Manchester's musical back pages (and not Morrissey who makes it worse every time he opens his mouth right now- just when you think he can't sink any further he does. Pretty soon it will be impossible to listen to The Smiths without visions of racist, far right fuckwittery). I overheard the opening to Why Can't I Touch It? coming through from the TV and stopped in my tracks to let it go on. Whatever programme it was didn't let it go on very long but it sounded superb, the reggae feel to the drums, the opening riff, all angular and jerky, followed by Pete Shelley's high pitched frustration and confusion (I've always assumed this song is about sexual frustration). The twin guitars stalk around each other while the bass and drums play a kind of Mancunian dub version of Can. Why Can't I Touch It? was released in 1979 and while it doesn't necessarily sound very modern or 2018 it also doesn't sound like it is nearly 40 years old.

Why Can't I Touch It?


Echorich said...

For me, Buzzcocks will always be a band that released double A sides. Songs like Why Can't I Touch It? are NOT secondary, not afterthoughts, not unfinished tracks. There is even an argument that can be made that the B-sides to the final singles are stronger than the A-sides.
Buzzcocks made Manchester relevant for me. Sure there's Magazine and Joy Division, but Buzzcocks set a template that survived their lifespan as a band - and probably would have survived longer than had they wanted to continue on.

Brian said...

Yep. That’s why Singles Going Steady is the most vital comp ever. B-sides as good as the A-sides.

Mike Hunt said...

You were watching 'The End Of The F*cking World'. What a blinder!