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Tuesday 19 July 2022

Wrote For Luck, Takes Me Higher

There was further sad news at the weekend with the announcement of the death of Paul Ryder aged fifty eight. Paul aka Horse was brother of Shaun and the bass player in Happy Mondays, and when you listen to their records you realise how much of their unearthly groove was due to his basslines. Self taught and trying to copy the basslines from Motown, Parliament and Funkadelic and house records, his basslines are the foundation on which the Mondays were able to base their chaos. I first saw them at the Mountford Hall, Liverpool University in March 1989, a gig like no other, the entire room dancing from front to back, the stage a shadowy blur with Shaun sitting on the drum riser to deliver his stream of consciousness street poetry for most of the gig, Bez appearing through the dry ice, grinning and bug eyed. Paul and guitarist Mark were left and right, shrouded in darkness churning out their weirded out funk rock grooves and noise. They finished, as they had to, with Wrote For Luck.

Wrote For Luck (Dance Mix)

This performance has the band in full flight on Club X in September 1989. Club X was on Channel 4, one of the channels late 80s, late night programmes aimed at catching the youth audience. 

RIP Paul Ryder.

Another long lost/ never seen before TV performance from the 1989/ 1990 period came my way a few days ago, this time loved up rave heroes The Beloved. The group are miming (unlike the Mondays) but this clip of them doing Your Love Takes Me Higher on Hit Studio International, recorded at Limehouse in London, is rather good and a perfect little time capsule.

Your Love Takes Me Higher is a superb piece of house- pop, encapsulating the optimism and wide eyed feel of the times. The Beloved duo Jon and Steve have expanded to a full band for TV appearances drafting in friends, everyone giving it everything, all long hair, long sleeved t-shirts and baggy jeans. 

Your Love Takes Me Higher (Demo)


Anonymous said...

How good is that Beloved clip....

TheRobster said...

Sad news indeed about Paul Ryder. Despite Shaun being the obvious point of reference to identifying the Mondays, I think without Paul's basslines, the band would have been a sloppy mess. There's not doubt it's the bass which holds everything together, it's the bass that makes you want to dance your arse off. And in many cases, it's the bass that you hum along to, not the guitars or vocals.

twopalmtrees said...

The Beloved - what a fantastic way to start the morning here in the midwest. Thanks for posting it.

Adam Turner said...

One of the many things I love about blogging is writing this stuff in my bedroom in Manchester and people saying what a fantastic way it is to start their day with in the Midwest of the USA.

Michael Doherty said...

Someone uploaded this great quality clip a few days ago. It so completely csptures that real sense of we've got the whole world ahead of us, anything's possible that permeated so much of the late 80s/early 90s club culture. https://youtu.be/cQcU-v5shGE

Echorich said...

It really hits home when artists who are your contemporaries in age pass, especially as the years go by. Happy Mondays didn’t click for me until their semi-legendary performance at The Sound Factory in NYC back in the summer of 1990. It was chaos on the stage and in the crowd, but through it all there was a groove that dominated the affair. After that show I was convinced that they were something special.
That Beloved clip is superb. They were the band that represented everything I thought Balearic had to offer me and You’re Love Takes Me Higher was, for me, the height of their musical power.