Jun 13

Friday Poll Special – The Great Britpop Sorting Hat!

FT215 comments • 9,522 views

We are now firmly into the BRITPOP YEARS on Popular, oh yes, so it’s time to consider its musical legacy in the only language we truly understand, viz. a ticky-box poll.

We have selected 32 bands who someone, somewhere, might possibly have once described as Britpop. Tick all the ones you like and by science we will be able to finally, once and for all, define terms like “Britpop D-List” and “second divison Britpop”. Isn’t that a noble endeavour? I thought so.

Which of these Britpop bands were Any Good At All?

  • Pulp 70%
  • Blur 64%
  • Kenickie 53%
  • Suede 52%
  • Supergrass 48%
  • Elastica 47%
  • Super Furry Animals 44%
  • Ash 43%
  • The Divine Comedy 39%
  • Oasis 35%
  • Boo Radleys 30%
  • Lush 30%
  • Bluetones 28%
  • Catatonia 25%
  • Mansun 24%
  • Sleeper 24%
  • Black Grape 23%
  • Lightning Seeds 21%
  • Gene 21%
  • Longpigs 19%
  • Echobelly 18%
  • Shed Seven 16%
  • Space 14%
  • Ocean Colour Scene 14%
  • WELLER 14%
  • Kula Shaker 13%
  • Cast 11%
  • Menswear 11%
  • My Life Story 11%
  • Marion 8%
  • Seahorses 8%
  • Northern Uproar 3%

Total Voters: 1,496

Poll closes: No Expiry

Loading ... Loading ...


  1. 1
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    (I’ll take this out of the Popular section next time put a proper post up…)

  2. 2
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    The problem is the oddities: Lush were good pre-Britpop, but were a shit Britpop band. I feel similar about Lightning Seeds who were also good after Britpop (the album from three or four years ago, Four Winds, is lovely). And then there are groups who, Nuggets-like, really did have one or two brilliant songs (Inbetweener is still one of my favourite Britpop-era singles).

    And why no Saint Etienne, who – as Bob is happy to remind people – were one of the original Select Britpop names (as were the Auteurs, no?).

  3. 3
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Actually, Bob and I were trying at a Rod Stewart gig the other week to work out the point at which Elastica stopped being New Wave of New Wave and became Britpop.

  4. 4
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I didn’t vote for Lush on those grounds but did vote for the Boo Radleys (whose Britpop stuff I hated) so no consistency from me.

    The Select names were (from memory) Suede, Pulp, Denim, Auteurs, St Et, Cud… so we’ve left plenty off. I had “1995-6” – the summers of Britpop – in mind as a criteria, basically. The only thing Saint Etienne put out – correct me if I’m wrong, Bob! – was “He’s On The Phone” which would be very marginal BP.

  5. 5
    punctum on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Wot no Auteurs or Denim? Not to mention Stereolab.

    FWIW I will probably spend the bulk of this weekend writing a blog post about WELLER

  6. 6
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I fear Northern Uproar will not find their fanbase here.

  7. 7
    TriffidFarm on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Suede and Denim were the first bands of something resembling this scene that I was introduced to. I inferred that all bands wanting an in would be naming themselves after fabrics, and there would be a land grab to claim any that weren’t taken.

  8. 8
    99centimos on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I’m up for a Nuggets-like Britpop era compilation. Is there any blog/tumblr/resource like that?

    Some of my favorite records of the late-90s were from the fringes of Britpop -“Everything Picture”, “You’re Majesty We Are Here”…

    it’s like record companies were giving idiosyncratic/freakish bands a chance hoping they could turn into the new Pulp or something.

    Also I miss Placebo in the list!

  9. 9
    tm on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Blur edging out Pulp? Bloody southerners!

  10. 10
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Gomez is way late! (And very post-BP)

    There may well be a companion “bands I missed” poll. If demanded.

  11. 11
    tm on 28 Jun 2013 #

    No way Placebo or Gomez were Britpop! They were ‘Britpop’s gone shit, let’s try something a little rawer’-late 90’s Lamacq fodder!

  12. 12
    99centimos on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I edited my comment before your answer Tom… In my mind Gomez they were waaay earlier! Quick Wikipedia visit made me realize my mistake.

  13. 13
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Also, Tom, you appear to have misspelled WELL-AH.

  14. 14
    Chelovek na lune on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Yes, exactly what MichaelH said at #2 about Lush. When first out, as a kind of MBV-shoegaze derivative, with complex textures and haunting rhythms and semi-buried vocals, they were pretty stunning. But the less said about their Britpop/hit singles phase, the better really. But I still voted for them on the basis of their first few singles, EPs and albums.

    I didn’t vote for Ocean Colour Scene, despite the B-side of their debut single (the much more ordinary-baggy “Sway”), in 1990 or so, being really rather haunting and worthy of repeated listening. They made up for this lapse of good taste many times over in the majority of subsequent releases.

    I’d say the Lightning Seeds were (more or less) consistently good, but general laddish-football-beeriness period aside (which I guess will be discussed on another occasion here…), didnt’ really think of them as being Britpop. Sure, they got meatier later on, but otherwise they were kind of fragile (the quite quite brilliant and lovely “Pure”, 1989) and closer to (late 80s/early 90s version) New Order, soundwise than major guitar-wielders that make up a substantial proprtion of this list.

  15. 15
    punctum on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I’m a lot more tolerant of late period Lush than most; the Lovelife single B-sides for instance are quite astonishing.

  16. 16
    wichitalineman on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I can understand why most of the names on this list are included, and others excluded, no real issues with it (I presume it means the likes of Rialto and Pimlico are non-league Britpop).

    I did vote for Lush and the Boo Radleys, even though their Britpop-era stuff does little for me. I might be wrong, but didn’t Lush cover Willow’s Song from The Wicker Man and a Vashti Bunyan song in the BP years? Impressive foresight.

    And I voted for Northern Uproar, the Slowdive of Britpop! Rollercoaster still sounds like a terrific single to me, especially if you’re stacking it alongside Daydreamer or Inbetweener. Even their label thought of them as a punchline. When the Forever Heavenly event happened at the South Bank a few years back, NU were pointedly not invited.

    The current issue of Q is about proto-Britpop, which of course no one called it in 91/92. The ’93 Select cover was the moment at which that unnamed thing could have gone overground, but didn’t. Still, it had slightly more traction than Romo. And Pulp obviously did break through eventually.

    Re 4: We certainly felt more affinity with Alex Party in ’95 than most of the groups on this list. Hopefully that came across.

  17. 17
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #16 and they did a Magnetic Fields cover too, first I’d heard of that band.

    (Similarly, the much-derided Wedding Present were onto Pavement VERY early – a cover of Box Elder on a 1990 cassingle)

  18. 18
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #16 I rather liked Rialto!

    #17 Yes, the Wedding Present Box Elder cover predated anyone in Britain even having heard of Pavement. Gedge at that point – like Coxon a few years later – was very pointedly turning away from his peers as he tried to find a new direction for his music (Seamonsters must count as one of the least expected and most artistically successful left-turns made by a major UK alt band).

  19. 19
    Steve Mannion on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Dodgy probably the biggest omission here.

    Remind me why the Manics aren’t deemed “worthy” of inclusion again?

  20. 20
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Manics – I ummed and ahhed but, like the Verve and Radiohead, just didn’t feel right.

    Dodgy!! Genuine omission. They actually were on my list and I must have forgotten them. Sorry Dodgy fans.

  21. 21
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    The lowest thing I actually voted for (currently) – poor old My Life Story. “Angel” should certainly be on a Britpop Nuggets.

  22. 22
    TriffidFarm on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Rialto are surely too late with their first single to be contenders.

  23. 23
    Steve Mannion on 28 Jun 2013 #

    My personal criteria for this sort of thing is ‘guitar band with a few mid-90s hits’ but I accept that this would undoubtedly lead to a Terrorvision landslide and that might upset the Jarvisans.

  24. 24
    wichitalineman on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Re 22: Well, yes, but the name gives away their intentions.

    Here’s Northern Uproar’s wonderfully timelocked website:


  25. 25
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Dubstar! My list-making skills are woeful.

  26. 26
    wichitalineman on 28 Jun 2013 #

    No, really? I never thought of them as Britpop.

  27. 27
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    They surely pass the “Shine compilation test”. How valid that test is I do not know…

  28. 28
    Chelovek na lune on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Manics surely not Britpop. Not sure I can pin down why not, but not.

    DODGY. Yes! Like Scarlet , winners of that 5-week phone-in demo-tape content on Gary Crowley’s Sunday afternoon GLR show (“The Demo Clash”?). Scarlet really ought to have released their winning track, “Piccadilly In The Rain” as a single: I don’t know that it was ever commercially released anywhere…

  29. 29
    TriffidFarm on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #24, re: http://www.n-uproar.u-net.com

    The discography page suggests that it was last tweaked in 1997, before the final album. I may have been blinded by the gallery wallpaper, but the reviews pages are lovely.

  30. 30
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    At the moment Oasis are out of the first Britpop division and face a potentially humiliating playoff against Kenickie.

  31. 31
    weej on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Surprised myself by voting for the vast majority. “Any good at all” is a pretty low standard to set though.

    Lowest I voted for was Marion, who were brilliant the one time I saw them live. Can’t understand why Longpigs aren’t higher up. Shed 7 got the tick for their excellent first couple of singles before they went crap. My Life Story are a good memory I don’t want to revisit for fear of ruining it. And Menswear, hated by all and sundry, put out three or four absolutely brilliant singles. I would venture that the venom directed against them indirectly led to the “less style more subtance” rockist bollocks we’ll get into in ’96 and ’97.

    Missing band = Powder, surely the ultimate Britpop band, because –

    * On Parkaway Records of Camden
    * Only released music in 1995
    * Appeared on “Britpop Now”
    * Pearl married a Supergrass
    * They just are

    FWIW this is what wiki thinks, pretty close to Tom actually – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Britpop_musicians

  32. 32
    Steve Mannion on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #28 “Not sure I can pin down why not, but not.” Yeah this is always the reason given…is my point really.

    Someone only invented the B-word so that people could argue what was and wasn’t it tho – nothing to do with the actual music.

  33. 33
    James BC on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Which of these bands have stayed together from that era up to the present day? I know Ash have – are they the only one?

  34. 34
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #31 Agree about Longpigs. But then I don’t think of them as Britpop band so much as a British rock band who happened to be around at the time of Britpop.

    Manics not Britpop because they were already successful and stylistically fully formed before Britpop. And also made no particular effort to court Britpop, did they?

    Dubstar not Britpop because they were bascially Saint Etienne Mk II, so if Saint Etienne aren’t Britpop, Dubstar can’t be.

  35. 35
    Chelovek na lune on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #32 I did attempt to prepare a list of reasons why the Manics weren’t, but every criteria that sprang to my mind was quickly ontradicted by the acceptance of another band sharing that criteria as Britpop. (Too *political* probably being the nearest to a category that still qualified, but seeing Pulp at the top of that list even draws that into question, to some degree).

    I do think the concept of “Britpop” (and were there any Scottish acts deemed to be “Britpop”?) was far more about image/appearance than music.

  36. 36

    last line doesn’t follow: dubstar could be britpop’s st et

  37. 37
    weej on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #35 – Geneva, possibly?

  38. 38

    34’s last line i mean

  39. 39

    Were there any Britpop bands not from the Atlantic Archipelago at all?

  40. 40
    Steve Mannion on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #39 Wannadies (Brittpop)

  41. 41
    weej on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #39 – for some reason there seem to be loads of Serbian bands that describe themselves as “Britpop” – see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veliki_Prezir – but that probably doesn’t count.
    The closest real example I can think of is Placebo, of Luxembourg / Swenden / pan-European-ness.

  42. 42
    James BC on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #39 And the Cardigans?

  43. 43
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Cardigans? Maybe??

  44. 44

    Jönköping is an excellent word.

  45. 45
    Chelovek na lune on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #41 Of course all the usual observations about using Wikipedia as a source apply…. but it’s notable that the Serbian version of the Wiki page on Veliki Prezir makes no reference to “Britpop”: it describes them variously as a “rock group”, practictioners of “alternative rock”, and as an “indie rock group”…

  46. 46
    Jorge on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Lush was brilliant until the end. There were even times I entertained the desire to hear the earlier stuff with the later production values.

  47. 47
    weej on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #45 – There’s loads of ’em on here – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Britpop_groups – but curiously what you’ve said seems to apply to them too (check out Eva Braun, Popcycle, Kristali…) I guess, boringly, it’s the work of a single editor.

  48. 48
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Wannadies were a powerpop band who’d been going for a while pre-Britpop. That some Britpop bands were also powerpop doesn’t mean all powerpop groups were Britpop. Also, Wannadies’ signifiers were most un-Britpop (William Eggleston pic for album cover, for example. Fact that Per wossisface was a stoner, not a cokehead).

    A couple of D-list contenders: Silver Sun (maybe too late?), whose first album I thought was great fun. And Laxton’s Superb, who had one lovely single.

  49. 49
    thefatgit on 28 Jun 2013 #

    They broke up for a bit during the 95-96 Britpop nadir, but A Northern Soul was released in 1995, so…

    …The Verve?

  50. 50
    Chelovek na lune on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #47 Hmm. Two of the groups you mention don’t even appear to have a Wiki page in Serbian. Will dig around some more at a later occasion….

    (Hummingbirds’ “Blush” would have made a great Britpop-powerpop single, if they weren’t Australian, and they hadn’t released it quite a few years too early, to general lack of interest in the UK)

  51. 51
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Blush was a great single! Hummingbirds feed more into the Smudge/Half a Cow scene that Evan Dando became so enamoured with, though. (I think at least one Hummingbird ended up in the Lemonheads, though I may well be wrong).

  52. 52
    swanstep on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I’ve only listened to about 10 of the bands on the list (and a whole bunch I’d never heard of before) so can’t really contribute to this poll. I can, however, report that I’m on board with Marcello and others here in thinking that Lush’s final album Lovelife was rather good, esp. the stunning Last Night (which is closer to Trip-hop than to Britpop).

  53. 53
    Auntie Beryl on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I recently put together a Spotify list of “stuff I remember fondly from the 90s”, and far more Britpop ended up on there than I had anticipated. Delving down as far as Elcka and Octopus.

    Scandalously, the Milltown Brothers aren’t on Spotify.

    On another note, I’ve just realised I voted for Ocean Colour Scene by mistake. Apologies.

  54. 54
    23 Daves on 28 Jun 2013 #

    The Bluetones always interest me. A band who I thought produced some great singles despite never really coming up with a consistent album. They had huge fanfares at the time from the music press, had a large hit with “Slight Return”, then very, very slowly their career faded, although it did just about outlive the natural lifespan of Britpop. “Keep The Home Fires Burning” picked up quite a bit of airplay and was a moderate hit in the early noughties, I seem to remember.

    In terms of a Britpop nuggets compilation, this would indeed be great. I think Rhino Records tried something similar with the “Brit Box”, but the choices seemed woefully misguided to me the last time I checked.

  55. 55
    admin on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Votes climbing very rapidly on this one. The most votes any FT poll has had, 520, has been open for over 2 years, and this one may pass it like a “Get Lucky” of polls



    http://freakytrigger.co.uk/ft/2010/02/popular-86/ has more votes, 558, open for over 3 years

  56. 56
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I wonder if Pulp’s lead reflects the fact that everyone thinks Jarvis as great, while Damon is a bit of a knob. Because surely Blur’s catalogue is better than Pulp’s?

  57. 57
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    “Any Good At All” allows no distinction between a 9/10 and a 10/10 catalogue :) The question is, which band would be more likely disliked?

    I think yr wrong about their relative merits anyway, though.

  58. 59
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #


  59. 60
    The Lurker on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #35, #39 – How about Garbage? One Scot, three Americans, first album out in 1995?

    #49 – I always think of Urban Hymns as the last great Britpop album, released about the same time as Be Here Now which is Britpop’s tombstone.

  60. 61
    MichaelH on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I prefer Pulp. I find them more likeable. I think of them more fondly. But when I sit and look at their catalogues, I think Blur’s is more varied, more consistent, and has a lot more great songs.

  61. 62
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    They’re jacks of all trades, not sure how many they mastered. But I dare say there’ll be an opportunity to talk more about Blur before too long.

  62. 63
    The Lurker on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #31 – On every single documentary/retrospective/clip show on Britpop/the 90s, Pearl from Powder appears as a talking head, yet, despite my university years coinciding almost exactly with the height of Britpop, I don’t remember hearing anything by them either at the time or since.

  63. 64
    speedwell54 on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Tom -are you on holiday?; so much stuff to read! Great to see FT so full of comments recently.

    Enjoyed thinking about the Brit Pop poll. Always fascinating to see how far one has veered from the general consensus. Not too bad as it happens; didn’t go for Elastica because of all the plagiarism stuff and the brevity; though they were massive. Don’t really know Lush. Sleeper were one of my favourites at the time, and though obviously I would never be influenced by this sort of stuff, Louise was stunning. She’s a proper author now.

    On Wiki there is a list of Brit Pop Artists which is pretty close to this, but also includes Take That – bizarre! I saw Saint Etienne came up on the “related to Brit Pop” list. So if there is another list, there’s one for you.

  64. 65
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Kenickie inching nearer the front of the peloton here.

  65. 66
    admin on 28 Jun 2013 #

    It’s as if interested parties are RTing this *innocent face*

  66. 67
    tm on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Manics too overtly Americanophile in their influences to be Britpop. No Britpopper whether Camden-eyeliner or dadrock would claim GnR or Hannoi Rocks as influences!

    Blur have a more varied back catalogue, but Pulp released better albums during their heyday. Even Parklife has some toss tracks on it.

  67. 68
    Tom on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #64 not on holiday, just tried a different working method, seems to be doing OK so far. :)

  68. 69
    fivelongdays on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Tom is right not to include the Manics (glam metal), Radiohead (postgrung altrock) or The Verve (shit). But Ash? Sorry, influenced by Ramones and Undertones, opening track on 1977 rips off/pays homage to fellow Ulstermen (and acknowledged inspiration/influence) Therapy, open about liking grunge in an era when to do so caused death-by-uncool for British bands – not-Britpop. Prob. best seen as UK veraion of a young Green Day. Fuck all to do with Waterloo Sunset at any rate

  69. 70
    fivelongdays on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Oh and Placebo were way too rocky to be classed as Britpop – and don’t knock Terrirvision (they were ace)

  70. 71
    The Lurker on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #69 – there were other Britpop bands influenced by the poppier end of punk – Supergrass for a start, and Blur always had one punk thrash on every album.

    Placebo were clearly Bowie/glam-influenced, like Suede, Pulp, Oasis…

  71. 72
    MissPurple on 28 Jun 2013 #

    As a Manics fan, I wouldn’t class them as Britpop either. I mean the two albums they released during the Britpop era (I’m talking 94-97 here): “The Holy Bible” was about as anti-Britpop as you could get, and while “Everything Must Go” is occasionally put in the Britpop category, I’m pretty sure their influences for that album had nothing in common with the Britpop movement IIRC

  72. 73
    Another Pete on 28 Jun 2013 #

    I’d like to nominate ‘Another night in’ by Strangelove for the Britpop Nugget category. Though said track doesn’t save Strangelove from joining the Conference of Britpop along side 60ft Dolls, BIS, David Devant and his Spirit Wife and Smaller

  73. 74
    flahr on 28 Jun 2013 #

    haha I voted for all but 8 of these and 7 of those I’ve never heard anything by (SORRY OCEAN COLOUR SCENE)

    I just really adore the Britpop sound, and, since naturally I came to it late (I was not really following pop at the age of two) I don’t feel jaded about it and I’ve not really had the chance to experience death by crap. In brief:

    – Early Lush is obvs better but Lovelife is RAD for “Ciao!” (FEAT. JARVIS!) and “Ladykillers” alone
    – Bluetones indeed better in greatest hits format but the debut still stands up and I think Science & Nature might be even better
    Attack of the Grey Lantern is TOTES AMAZE and its 3CD expanded reissue was 110% JUSTIFIED
    – Sleeper’s second album was better than their first
    – Kula Shaker have about three good songs but at least that’s better than Cast’s one (“Finetime” still means they count as any good at all though) (and what’s with so many Cast singles making it onto Now! albums? what hold did they have?)
    – she left me on FRY-DAY! and ruined my WEEK-END! = proof of hiphop’s secret influence on Britpop
    – the Menswe@r (CALL THEM BY THEIR REAL NAME) album is hilarious and “Being Brave” is great AND AND AND they covered Public Image for a B-side = CREDIBLE
    – dismissing Elastica as dull plagarists is just RONG since “Stutter” = SINGLE OF THE 90s*

    *well, actually, no, since the greatest single and indeed song of all time was also the greatest single and indeed song of the 90s, but we will come to that in time

    right I will shush now

  74. 75
    Lazarus on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Travis – too late maybe? Some of their early singles were on the ‘Shine’ comps, and I think of ‘The Man Who’ as the last Britpop album …

    # 32 Stuart Maconie has claimed to come up with the term hasn’t he, supposedly while writing for one of the weeklies. Has that ever been confirmed?

    Lowest I voted for was Seahorses, if only for the gorgeous ‘Love Me and Leave Me’. They were the band the Roses could have been!

    Whole thread has made me want to dig out the Shines tbh.

  75. 76
    flahr on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #75 Travis are surely post-Britpop – “Why Does It Always Rain On Me?” and all that later-to-develop-into-Coldplay sensitive moping.

  76. 77
    Iain Mew on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Travis’ not very successful first album was low on sensitive moping and quite Britpop! (first two tracks: “All I Want to Do is Rock”, “U16 Girls”). It was released in 1997 so a bit too late, though. It’s a similar story for Embrace whose first album mostly fits but was released in 1998. They also later became bracketed with Coldplay et al.

  77. 78
    Auntie Beryl on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Kenickie third, now. Are fanbases being mobilised?

  78. 79
    23 Daves on 28 Jun 2013 #

    No mentions of Theaudience yet…. They’re at the forefront of my mind at the moment since I found a dirt cheap copy of their album the other day. Very much latecomers to the whole party, and in fact I’m struggling to think of a Britpop (or Britpop styled) major signing who came after them. They really seemed to be the last act the majors waved their cheque books around for.

    They’re not really deserving of a major reassessment, but they certainly have a lot of very strong tracks in their favour, and (while she got a lot of criticism at the time) Bextor’s sweet and sour voice did add a lot to their style. Even back then I thought that if they’d been around a couple of years earlier they would probably have had more success, but I’m sure that idea doesn’t trouble her much.

  79. 80
    Auntie Beryl on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #79 I Got The Wherewithal is a deeply odd record to have been given a major label counterbox push. There are a few bands in that bracket from this period: dismissed due to the failings of others. Salad are forgotten now, but put out some very good, and odd, records. Drugstore too.

  80. 81
    Nanaya on 28 Jun 2013 #

    Shocked at the absence of These Animal Men! Surely they fulfil the requisite nindie novelty slot? Concur that the absence of the (really rather good but I’m biased) Strangelove is odd, since they actually collaborated with some of Suede on their 2nd (weakest) album. I still think the 1st album is pretty amazing

  81. 82
    23 Daves on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #80 I completely agree with you on Salad and Drugstore, although only with the disclaimer (as with Theaudience) that I don’t think any of these bands deserved to be huge as such, just much bigger than they were – at least grabbing the odd silver disc now and then with the likes of Gene. Though to make a horrible and slightly lazy comparison, I don’t think Theaudience are anything like as good as Rose Elinor Dougall, though I do see them both as occupying very similar territory indeed.

    I also got the impression with Theaudience that the label were playing a peculiar game with their singles releases, making each one slightly more commercial than the last. What that was supposed to achieve or prove I’m not quite sure – perhaps the worry was that if they just dropped “A Pessimist Is Never Disappointed” or “I Know Enough” first the fanbase wouldn’t have been developed enough to create a sizeable hit, which might make sense for a band who had barely been around for five minutes before they were signed.

  82. 83
    admin on 28 Jun 2013 #

    A NWONW poll next Friday – if we’re desperate

  83. 84
    Auntie Beryl on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #82 I guess it’s only in this era that expectations might have been so high for bands like these. I’m very happy to have been there for that sort of thing, and love the chance to discuss even the chance of it happening.

    That’s why I will continue to defend Britpop – given what came after I’m prepared to overlook the weaker moments given the sheer volume of good stuff.

  84. 85
    RM on 28 Jun 2013 #

    What about Dodgy?

  85. 86
    Mark G on 28 Jun 2013 #

    #83 you surely can’t ask “Which of these bands were any good” for that one?

  86. 87
    MBI on 29 Jun 2013 #

    Oasis’s 30% showing is just you poncy music nerds in abject denial.

  87. 88
    mintness on 29 Jun 2013 #

    re “Scottish Britpop” acts – do the Supernaturals count?

  88. 89
    Auntie Beryl on 29 Jun 2013 #

    Scotpop: Teenage Fanclub, Supernaturals, Superstar, High Fidelity, er, er, can we rope in Belle & Sebastian at this point?

  89. 90
    Auntie Beryl on 29 Jun 2013 #

    #87 Or maybe a comment that Oasis, for all their manifold faults, weren’t Britpop?

  90. 91
    Chelovek na lune on 29 Jun 2013 #

    #88, #89, etc: Whiteout!

  91. 92
    Auntie Beryl on 29 Jun 2013 #

    #91 the list of crap Scottish bands Alan McGee signed deserves its own Wikipedia page.

  92. 93
    Billy Hicks on 29 Jun 2013 #

    I’m slightly but not entirely intoxicated as I write this, so apologies for incomprehensibleness.

    * Pulp (Duh. Reponsible for both one of my favourite songs of all time (as poetically written about in the first R&J entry and one of my favourite fesitval headliners of all time, Hyde Park)

    *Blur (Hit and miss but you simply cannot fault their true classics)

    *Suede (Animal Nitrate, Trash, Beautiful Ones and a ton of tracks I’ve yet to discover)

    *Supergrass (Alright is a bit too much overplayed but ‘Moving’ always raises a smile)

    *Elastica (Connection being the theme to Trigger Happy TV fills me with pre-teen nostalgia)

    *Ash (love Shining Light, don’t massively know their other tracks but am willing to listen)

    *Divine Comedy (Everybody Knows and National Express are both epic. Again need to hear them more)

    *Oasis (Next)

    *Bluetones (Entirely on the basis of Slight Return which I love)

    *Catatonia (both Mulder & Scully, Road Rage and their duet with Space are excellent listens)

    *Mansun (first heard Wide Open Space through the Perfecto remix but original’s great too)

    *Lightning Seeds (Life of Riley and a huge future bunny)

    *Space (Female of the Species, but a few others of theirs are pretty cool too)

    *Cast (solely for Sandstorm)

    …and one I foolishly missed in the vote, Ocean Colour Scene, if just for The Day We Caught the Train.

    Britpop did nothing for me as a child. The sounds were weird and loud and I didn’t understand what half the singers were singing, only a future Blur bunny standing out from the crowd to my 6 year old self. I discovered most of these songs in my teenage/early 20s years a decade later, otherwise it was the much less revered future late-90s musical scene that became “my” generation of music, one that’ll probably get 1s or at the most 2s from everyone but I’ll be bigging it up to the high hills. I’ll tell you what I want, what I really really want…

  93. 94
    weej on 29 Jun 2013 #

    I’m going to try to put together a ‘Britpop Nuggets’ CD but I’m wondering where to draw the bar, obscurity-wise. Blur/Oasis/Pulp/Suede are too well-known worldwide, but even they could be represented with a good quality b-side or album track. Also I think it’s best to limit things to ’94-’96 if possible. Basically, I don’t want it to turn into ‘Shine’. Any thoughts?

    #93 – I think you’re unduly pessimistic regarding the S**** G**** and even late 90s stalwarts like B*W******, but time will tell. (exit pursued by bunny)

  94. 95
    hardtogethits on 29 Jun 2013 #

    The Seahorses seem particularly under-discussed. As #75 jokes, “The band the Roses could have been” – surely, surely, surely that’s why people are overlooking them, and their clutch of magnificent singles? Amongst a small circle of friends, 1 of us has always thought highly of “You Can Talk To Me”; 1 “Love is the Law”; 1 “Blinded by the Sun”. Highly being somewhere between Desert Island Discs and All Time Top 100.

    I found it pretty hard to discern on the basis of “any good at all” / “NOT any good at all”. There’s a little bit of good in everyone (here), and they have all had more hits than I have had.

  95. 96
    Izzy on 29 Jun 2013 #

    94: Fill it with the lengthier, reflective, usually gloomier tracks that no Shine compilation would ever touch. It’d still be very much britpop, but not as anyone thinks of it. Start with:

    Blur – Essex Dogs
    Pulp – Sheffield: Sex City
    Suede – High Rising (they have a ton of these)
    Mansun – Special/Blown It (Delete as Appropriate)
    Kula Shaker – Sound of Drums

    add the odd garagey thrash or other unchirpy oddity:

    Supergrass – Lose It
    Oasis – Columbia
    The Verve – A Northern Soul

    and you’d have a very fine cd imo. And no need to pretend you like Kenickie – you people, honestly.

  96. 97
    Kit on 29 Jun 2013 #

    Kenickie absolutely deserve their current placement as they are one of the 24 BEST BANDS OF ALL TIME

    [i]Blush was a great single! Hummingbirds feed more into the Smudge/Half a Cow scene that Evan Dando became so enamoured with, though. (I think at least one Hummingbird ended up in the Lemonheads, though I may well be wrong).[/i]

    HAC boss Nic was filling in for his ex on bass when the H’birds supported the Lemonheads on their first tour, as she was then preggo’d up with the lead singer’s sprig; thus sparking Dando’s interest in the shop, label and scene. (Lemonheads’ Rockin’ Stroll was later about, and the video stars, the fruit of said union.)

  97. 98
    Izzy on 29 Jun 2013 #

    95: I went to a very early Seahorses gig. I couldn’t believe it, all the Roses bits that I’d liked and thought were Squire’s aesthetic had been forensically distilled off, leaving this lump of tar. It was like watching a child determinedly break its only toy.

    Even worse than the lumpen music was the look. Everyone bar Squire looked shit; nobody else could even remotely approach cool; there could never be any way to change them. Squire must surely have known this and it was deliberate legacy-trashing; the alternative, that he never knew why the Roses were good, is too grim to contemplate.

    Yet Love Is The Law has a decent long solo (if you’d never heard the trick before) and Blinded By The Sun is pretty good on any measure. I believe there was a second album, though whether anyone has ever heard it I do not know.

  98. 99
    hardtogethits on 29 Jun 2013 #

    98 yeah – only toy. Great analogy. I knew a guy who was v into The Roses, but not much of a gig-goer. When he finally fancied seeing a band live, The Seahorses were his starting point. Fair to say the disappointment put him off live acts forever. I’ve got the album, and it’s not very good. But were they any good AT ALL? Unquestionably.

  99. 100
    Another Pete on 29 Jun 2013 #

    There were a number of bands who had their peak/lifespan conveniently tie in with the Britpop time frame. First up the unimaginatively named Brit-rock scene with bands like Skunk Anansie, Ash, Reef, Terrorvision, The Wildhearts, 3 Colours Red. Then you have Madchester survivors like the Charlatans and James enjoying a second wind. You could even include the funk-fuelled Ferrari-driving hat wearing bunny to that list. All of them were British, all with a melodic pop leaning, but were they Britpop?

    #96 Surely Supergrass’ unchirpy oddity is Sometimes I make you sad.

  100. 101
    fivelongdays on 29 Jun 2013 #

    @100 – Britrock! There were some awesome British Rock acts in the 90s (I’d lump in Ash, Therapy? and the Manics and Idlewild in with them, too). We get VERY close to talking about Terrorvision, and that whole scene-that-wasn’t means an awful lot to me. Suffice to say, I’m sure I can find an excuse to mention it SOMEWHETE.

  101. 102
    Nixon on 29 Jun 2013 #

    The Divine Comedy are opening a lead over Oasis, making it appropriate to reference the narrator’s rant at the end of “Middle Class Heroes”.

  102. 103
    23 Daves on 29 Jun 2013 #

    #98 The Seahorses were responsible for one of the worst gigs I’ve ever been to. John Squire kept pouting and making Rock God poses during his tedious solos, the rest of the band were devoid of charm, and by the time the whole thing was over lots of Roses fans left the venue with their heads bowed (me included). It was such a depressing experience, and one I’ve never quite forgiven Squire for. I’m still not sure what exactly he was trying to prove.

    They had a couple of halfway good singles, “Blinded By The Sun” had a certain haunting quality about it – but even that sounded like the final track The Bluetones would have pulled from their LP in the hope of getting a very minor chart placing.

    I’ve still got a couple of Seahorses CDs sitting in a shoebox somewhere at the back of my wardrobe, I could pull them out to see if they deserve a reassessment, but I’m sure I’m not being overly unfair.

  103. 104
    Rory on 29 Jun 2013 #

    I voted for Pulp, Blur, Suede, Supergrass, Elastica, Super Furry Animals, Ash, The Divine Comedy, Oasis, Lush, Bluetones, Catatonia, Mansun, Lightning Seeds, Longpigs, Space, and would have voted for Kula Shaker if I’d noticed them (for their first album). Scarily, I own the entire back catalogue of all of them apart from SFA’s last few albums and Mansun and Kula Shaker past their first (Grey Lanterns is brilliant, but their follow-up left me flat; one album of KS seemed sufficient).

    Tried Kenickie once and didn’t like ’em much, despite adoring LL’s vocals on Mint Royale’s “Don’t Falter”. Bought Menswear’s album and sold it. Bought the Seahorses’ and sold it at the earliest possible opportunity. Heard the Boo Rads’ early stuff and never bothered with their Britpop phase. Liked a few Sleeper singles but for some reason never investigated further; probably should have voted for them anyway for “Sale of the Century”. Not a big fan of Shaun Ryder’s sound. Not sure if I’ve ever heard Gene, OCS, Echobelly, Cast (despite liking The La’s), My Life Story or Northern Uproar. A few tracks by Shed Seven seem to have snuck into my MP3 collection via a friend’s mix CD, and are about to be pruned. Marion! I forgot to vote for Marion! My Great Lost Britpop discovery of a few years ago…

    I guess what I’m saying is, This Is My Music. Wish more of them had scored UK number one singles so we could talk about them directly on Popular instead of obliquely.

  104. 105
    23 Daves on 29 Jun 2013 #

    #73 – re Bis… I don’t know if they really slotted in with Britpop. Their earlier material seemed like some hangover from Riot Grrrl and twee indie, and then later they actually began to sound like the blueprint for the noughties indie sound, and haven’t necessarily received the respect due to them for that, or the blame depending on your point of view. They got Andy Gill in to produce “Social Dancing”, and the single “Eurodisco” in particular (which should have been huge) almost seems like a harbinger of a coming storm. When one particular bunnyable act became briefly huge, I’m amazed they didn’t feel horribly cheated (although Manda Rin is apparently a huge fan of them).

    There’s also been a lot of tittle-tattle over the years about how the band were given a rough ride by an (unnamed) IPC journalist and his friends purely because Manda Rin failed to respond to his advances. She’s never commented herself so far as I know, but it does make me wonder if there were hidden depths of dodginess in the rather more laddish music press at this point. Certainly, the whole “female fronted band” dismissal of certain acts felt very uncomfortable to me at the time, as the very same journalists were seldom criticising bands who had charismatic male lead singers with faintly wooden members behind them. (Can’t remember The Fall getting slagged off for having Smithblokes in the ranks… or Shed Seven getting stick for their Wittermen…)

  105. 106
    Alan not logged in on 29 Jun 2013 #


    It had come to my attention that there is no ‘None of the above’ option

  106. 107

    I assumed this was the purpose of the WELLER feature and voted accordingly :D

  107. 108
    Patrick Mexico on 29 Jun 2013 #

    Seriously worried that I might be the only person voting for “all of them.” The problem is, anything with caterwauling guitars + a huge chorus x British sarcasm (however forced) = a delight to my 15-year-old tastes (had many ideological problems with the school nu-metal fans so decided to like the most angular, sarcastic, ironic stuff rather than Papa Roach saying I Hate Myself And I Want To Die, without the good/funny/ironic bits. Though the arse-end of this genre is probably just as witless as the baggy-shorted lot from across the pond.)

    I’ll have to come back to this later when I’ve binged on all the above acts. I’m really not too scared even to listen to Northern Uproar, though feel free to tell me if you’ve any precautions for wading into the restricted fallout zone.

    Ok, it’s strictly speaking New Wave of New Wave, but S*M*A*S*H – I Want To Kill Somebody is one of my favourite British “indie” tracks of 94-96… Buzzcocks/Slaughter and the Dogs as styled by the manic caution of the Curious Incident of the Dog In the Night-Time.

  108. 109
    James BC on 29 Jun 2013 #

    #100 I wouldn’t say James enjoyed a second wind. More like, they inexplicably made an album that sounded like Shed Seven and lacked everything that made them great. I saw them a few years ago at a festival and they played nothing from that period, quite tellingly.

  109. 110
    James BC on 29 Jun 2013 #

    A bit harsh, the above. The songs were OK, it’s just that compared to Laid, Britpop seemed to be an unwelcome influence.

  110. 111
    Ed on 29 Jun 2013 #

    #106 “None of them”….

    As a control group, would have been interesting to see what people felt about contemporary non-Britpop acts.

    What else were people listening to at the time? Tricky? Goldie? Pearl Jam?

  111. 112

    […] pop culture website, Freaky Trigger, published a poll about Britpop bands yesterday, which got me thinking about the genre and its cover […]

  112. 113
    Chelovek na lune on 29 Jun 2013 #

    #111 Portishead, I think. And in my case, at least, also Sophie B Hawkins.

  113. 114
    Lazarus on 29 Jun 2013 #

    Alisha’a Attic?

  114. 115
    Sam C on 30 Jun 2013 #

    “What else were people listening to at the time? Tricky? Goldie? Pearl Jam?”

    First two sure, Portishead yes, also Wu Tang and their various members, Gravediggaz, Palace Brothers/Music, Handsome Boy Modelling School, De La Soul, Beastie Boys, TLC, Swans, The Fall, Disco Inferno, Scott Walker, Aphex Twin, Skullflower, Prince, The Pharcyde, Tortoise, Stereolab, Cardigans, Manics, Kool Keith, Stina Nordenstam, DJ Shadow, Daft Punk, Nick Cave, Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci, Hanson, Prodigy, Company Flow, Ben Folds Five, Spice Girls, All Saints, Gang Starr, Chemical Brothers, a lot of jungle and hardcore pirate radio… the fresh, questing music that was out there (as well as some bright, fun pop).

    I’ll concede that’s a pretty masculine list for the most part, but in terms of musical interest and excitement I’d say that the majority of those acts were vastly superior to any of the ones in the poll (with the possible exceptions of Pulp and SFA, the only ones I’d have voted for if this had been a typical ‘which would you give 6 or above to’ poll*).

    Britpop seemed to me comfort music for those scared of the bright new sonic world which was rendering foursquare guitar pop/rock bands creatively irrelevant. Now we all have our comfort music but really, the unbelievable dullness of most of those groups was something else. Trundle-trundle-jangle-jangle-oh fuck it’s Oasis with their clodhopping, fun-free take on Slade-THUMPTHUMPTHUMPTHUMP-wow, Wire are good! Let’s rip them off but make it boring-wow, The Jam are good! Let’s try and write a song like one of their crap ones….

    *I know that Blur tried out a lot of different things and probably deserve better from me, but they just rub me up the wrong way. I should have given them a vote here though, so sorry about that.

  115. 116
    Sam C on 30 Jun 2013 #

    I used to work with the bass player out of Salad, very nice chap.

  116. 117
    Punk Pop on 30 Jun 2013 #

    Well the glaring omission from this list is obviously Shampoo :) Pop punk sensibilities, pissed on Oasis and Blu in Japan and did what the fuck they liked despite Brit Media ignoring them. Well underrated and summed up the whole mid 90’s damn well, took no prisoners and fucked off when the job was done. Respect!

  117. 118
    swanstep on 30 Jun 2013 #

    “What else were people listening to at the time? Tricky? Goldie? Pearl Jam?”
    Tricky, Bjork, Aphex, Smashing Pumpkins, Buckley, Radiohead (Fake Plastic Trees was on the Clueless s/track!), Pavement and, since I was in the US, a lot of industrial: NIN’s Downward Spiral from 1994 was having massive reverberations, so, e.g., Filter’s Hey Man Nice Shot was all over the place, (still fun) third rate Nine Inch Nails from Gravity Kills and Bowie was all over the soundtrack to Se7en, and Bowie and NIN’s joint tour was huge. My local wunder-band was (math rock, post-rock) Don Caballero (whose super-Drummer Damon Che would come out at the beginning of gigs and oh so dramatically *nail* his kit to the stage). And on the RnB side of things: TLC, TLC, TLC.

  118. 119
    Sam C on 30 Jun 2013 #

    Oasis fans who think I’m being harsh may be amused to hear that drunks are belting out ‘Don’t Look Back In Anger’ outside my window. That’ll learn me.

  119. 120
    Blurgh on 30 Jun 2013 #

    Shocked by the poor showing for Sleeper, easily the best band of the era after Pulp. They even managed TWO songs on the (dare I say: epoch-defining) Trainspotting soundtrack.

  120. 121
    Izzy on 30 Jun 2013 #


  121. 122
    enitharmon on 30 Jun 2013 #

    Ed @ 111 — What else were people listening to at the time? Tricky? Goldie? Pearl Jam?

    Define what you mean by “people”.

    I, for example if I am “people”, was listening to K-Passa, the Sweet Soul Sisters or Blind Lemon Beefcake live in various Bristol pubs; Annie Lennox, Donald Fagen, Bruce Springsteen or Cream in the car; Sibelius or Scarlatti, Puccini or Wagner, Miles Davis or John Coltrane in contemplative moments at home.

    I don’t think any of those were ever described as ‘Britpop’. But I don’t think that was the answer you were looking for, was it? Perhaps I’m not really a person.

  122. 123
    Tom on 30 Jun 2013 #

    First half of the year – main memory is A Guy Called Gerald’s Black Secret Technology. Second half – Different Class.

  123. 124
    Rory on 30 Jun 2013 #

    #115 Re “comfort music” – alongside all the bands in the poll I was listening to plenty of that “bright sonic world” – lots of the bands you and others have mentioned as some kind of counterpoint; the Chemical Brothers and Ben Folds pretty much defined the 2000s for me. Why on earth does it have to be either/or? And condemning all of the bands in the poll as “foursquare guitar pop/rock” is just… looking for a rise out of someone, so I’ll stop there.

  124. 125
    enitharmon on 30 Jun 2013 #

    Following up my post @122

    There’s probably no period in my life when I was less concerned with what new popular music was coming out than the mid-90s. I don’t think that’s about age; influenced by my daughter and other younger people in the 2000s I discovered a lot of new and original music that I like a lot. There is a simple, practical reason though – quite a lot of my music was still on vinyl, much of it transferred to cassette for use in the car, and the equipment for playing/copying was reaching the end of its useful life and not readily replaceable. Much of my spending on CDs, therefore, was devoted to replacing all that old vinyl and there wasn’t much to spare for exploring the new stuff.

    Of course, some of that old vinyl never found its way onto CD at the time and that was a shame, which is only now being rectified in ways that I won’t dwell on here. Others, annoyingly, got messed about by the distributors with substituted tracks and a mess of “alternative mixes” and “bonus tracks” which spoilt the effect as it wasn’t all that easy on my kit to play a CD selectively (a close friend of mine wanted an expurgated version of Carole King’s Tapestry album (without Smackwater Jack) and I could do this by fiddling about each time but couldn’t store the programme for it).

  125. 126
    Ed on 30 Jun 2013 #

    Enitharmon @122

    No: that was exactly the answer I was looking for. I was just interested in seeing how Britpop fit into people’s wider listening.

    Did you manage to avoid it altogether, then?

    “Perhaps I’m not really a person.” Sounds like you are one to me. Pending the full Voight-Kampff results, of course. ;-)


  126. 127
    Ed on 30 Jun 2013 #

    @125 Comments overlapped.

    That’s an interesting point about the switch to CDs. A great example of how people (including you!) were shifting away from buying new music and towards buying new technology.

  127. 128
    Izzy on 30 Jun 2013 #

    I was devouring pretty much everything I could get at the time, including a ton of britpop and a ton of the alternative fare Sam describes at 115. I imagine most heads were doing the same.

    Beyond that I had an outstanding lending library nearby that led me to allsorts – new romantic era was a favourite, iirc Marc Almond and Duran Duran making comebacks about that time was thing for me (and nobody else I knew). I tried and failed to get bossa nova too.

    And Melody Maker’s Unknown Pleasures dates from the period too – Chic, Fleetwood Mac and Zep, and later Abba and Curtis Mayfield, made their way onto my personal heavy rotation in the period.

    One idea I never got was that success for Elastica or Teenage Fanclub meant seeking out Wire or Big Star or whoever, and listening to them. I mean even if it was really true that Big Star were the motherlode, you’ve got the idea anyway; so why seek out a slightly better version of what you’ve already heard, when there’s another universe out there?

    Find out who your idols love then go for the opposite, I say.

  128. 129
    23 Daves on 30 Jun 2013 #

    #115 I agree with you on many of those choices (while also adding Leftfield to your list). By no means was I sitting in my bedroom listening solely to Britpop, there were a lot of other things going on besides.

    I was music editor of the student newspaper at the time, and while that meant very little in the grand scheme of things, it did mean that I got sent a huge array of albums from PR companies. I’ve often wondered since whether the mid-nineties felt like a diverse and exciting time for music because it was, or just because I was young and impressionable and so much material got shoved under my nose without me having to make as much effort to go out and find it. Everyone thinks their teens and early twenties were musically where it was at, and I do consciously try not to sound as if I’m falling into that trap.

  129. 130
    Kinitawowi on 30 Jun 2013 #

    #109… what?!

    James’ story around 1995-6 is very peculiar indeed, but it features no albums; 1994 was the year of Wah Wah, and while I’d compare that to a lot of things (Zooropa is the most usual attempt at a reference), Shed Seven is not one of them. Then there was Whiplash in ’97 – unless that’s your Shed Seven reference, which… no. 95-96 was the Black Thursday / Booth And The Bad Angel period.

    I’m struggling badly with the poll thanks to a reluctance to name many of the bands “Britpop”, at least around this period (there’s a lot of words I’d use to describe Casanova-era The Divine Comedy but I don’t think Britpop would ever be one of them).

  130. 131
    Patrick Mexico on 1 Jul 2013 #

    “She likes the black one / He likes the posh one / Cute ones are usually gay” – James, Destiny Calling (1998)

    I think we all know which group THAT refers to.

  131. 132
    Sam C on 1 Jul 2013 #

    #124, #129

    I wasn’t looking for a rise, honest, and I didn’t mean to suggest it was an either/or – in fact, I think a hell of a lot of my antipathy stems from being baffled at the time that so many people I knew (who also dug the good stuff) were wasting time on things that seemed utterly pedestrian to me. It wasn’t simply a difference of taste, it was that in my milieu it was really hard to escape this shit. And I was very pissed off that the coverage of the forward-looking stuff I loved was edged out by this wave of grot. So OK, bit of an adolescent rant, but seeing that list brought it all back!

    I stand by ‘foursquare guitar pop/rock’ for a large chunk of the poll list though (I think I clarified that I didn’t mean all of them, if that wasn’t clear then mea culpa). Suddenly it seemed that beauty and invention were of no importance, all that mattered was that indie records were in the charts. Great pop very often comes from the tension between art and commerce, but I hear very little art in Britpop. All very cokey and boozy.

    I want to stick around here – the project is great and the comments fascinating – so I’ll make an effort to wind my neck in in future!

  132. 133
    punctum on 1 Jul 2013 #


  133. 134
    Cumbrian on 1 Jul 2013 #

    I have been away for the weekend so missed all the fun. Too much good stuff already in the thread to talk about/rehash, so I will try not to bother. The one thing I would say is that I am surprised how poorly Black Grape seem to have fared – especially given the low bar of being “any good at all”. Maybe people don’t consider them Britpop?

    I got their debut for £3 in the carcass of an HMV a couple of months ago having never bought it at the time. It was glorious, so much so that it drove me to thinking that the exact high point of Britpop might be Reverend Black Grape with the chorus crashing in and Shaun Ryder hacking out “O Come All Ye Faithful”. Released in October 1995 – the same month as Different Class – it seems to me that the downturn for Britpop started soon there after.

    Low number of votes for Weller too suggests to me that people don’t rate his Britpop output (Stanley Road and Heavy Soul?) because to my ear there is some decent stuff on Wild Wood.

    Finally, Ocean Colour Scene – for a pretty conservative band, they strike me as a bit of an oddity – multi-racial and a gay lead singer, which is a bit from the usual band composition seen elsewhere in Britpop (and yes, I know that there are bands like Sleeper and Lush on there – I am just talking in generalities about the genre overall).

  134. 135
    Rory on 1 Jul 2013 #

    Sam C @132 – I certainly hope you do stick around – the more the merrier! – and I can understand how a list of bands (any list of bands) could trigger a deep-seated aversion rooted in one’s own musical history. I’m not even that bothered that you (or anyone) consider this music shit, or a wave of grot, or even some of it as “foursquare guitar pop/rock” (although… so?). My annoyed response was more to “comfort music for those scared of the bright new sonic world”.

    To me personally, this particular musical moment meant a lot, but it was hardly a brake on my own explorations, as mentioned. But apart from that, I just can’t agree that there was “very little art in Britpop” or in these bands’ wider output. Sure, some produced examples of cokey excess after they made it big – Head Music and Be Here Now most obviously. But they’re hardly the majority of everything these bands released.

    Some of the bands listed, like Ash and Catatonia and the Divine Comedy, I struggle to think of as Britpop; if they are then we might as well rope in Radiohead and James. But taking the list on its own terms lets me vote for superlative moments like this, which is the 1990s’ own “A Day in the Life” as far as I’m concerned. Is it “comfort music”? Well, it’s exhilarating… is exhilaration comforting? Custard is comforting. Hey, speaking of Custard…

  135. 136
    Rory on 1 Jul 2013 #

    While I’m at it… re #129, “Everyone thinks their teens and early twenties were musically where it was at”. That’s one reason I’ve been looking forward to this Popular era. I wasn’t in my teens/early twenties in the mid-1990s; I was moving into my late twenties, and had been through a fair few different musical phases already. But this is the time I think of as “where it was at”, and not just because of Britpop. The era from around 1994 to 2004 takes in a huge amount of music that matters to me, and a disproportionate amount of it was made in the UK.

  136. 137
    Izzy on 1 Jul 2013 #

    And don’t wind your neck in for goodness’ sake! A bit of dissent is good spice round here, where the consensus view is so often plain wrong. But at least the excreable Kenickie are now beginning what I hope is a long slide down this poll. A corresponding rise for Kula Shaker and we’ll be getting somewhere.

  137. 138
    James BC on 1 Jul 2013 #

    Probably the thing with Black Grape is that people can’t believe that they possibly can have been any good. Shaun and Bez without the other Mondays, plus some druggy mates and one of the Ruthless Rap Assassinz? But amazingly it did work. Not really Britpop in my book, though.

  138. 139
    punctum on 1 Jul 2013 #

    #137: not “plain wrong” but “different.” People seem to have difficulty getting past this fundamental obstacle to understanding.

    For instance, one could say that Kula Shaker are several earth crust layers below execrable and that Kenickie were rather good, but that would be a different opinion rather than a diktat being inscribed on a tablet with death as punishment for disobedience.

  139. 140
    Izzy on 1 Jul 2013 #

    Do you really think that needs pointed out?

  140. 141
    Patrick Mexico on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Re 133: Read that as “Sleepflower”; sensational opener to the good Welsh bunnies’ second album, though like Supergrass and Alright, the band are often too embarrassed to play it live; I’m quite tolerant of such tropes, but the bombastic central riff sounds a bit like a cock-rock take on Captain Hollywood Project meets Corona’s Baby Baby!

  141. 142
    weej on 2 Jul 2013 #

    #140 – 640 people vote for a band, you say they are “execrable” and give no further comment, so yes it looks like it needs to be said. There’s a big difference between challenging a consensus and just contradicting it.

  142. 143
    James BC on 2 Jul 2013 #

    How would you divide this list? To me it looks like:

    TOP TIER: Blur, Pulp, Suede,
    NEAR-GREATNESS: Kenickie to Ash
    MIDDLING: Divine Comedy to Lightning Seeds
    PERIPHERAL: Longpigs down to Cast
    BOBBINS: Menswear and below

    (Not that I remotely agree with the overall order, or that anyone else will either.)

  143. 144
    Cumbrian on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Given that 2 votes currently separate Suede and Kenickie, those two votes are doing an awful lot of work on Suede’s behalf. Equally, one vote currently separates Cast and Menswear.

    I know, in this sort of exercise, you’ve got to draw lines somewhere though. Looking purely at the votes I’d say, Suede should go into the second tier or Kenickie should go in the top tier. And the bottom tier should probably be from Kula Shaker or Cast on down.

    Of course, if more votes come in, then things might change. It just seems to me that currently these are where natural gaps have formed.

    Whether Kenickie should be seen as a Top Tier Britpop act or Kula Shaker should be seen as one of the worst of the worst is something I’ll leave to finer minds than mine, I think.

  144. 145
    punctum on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Britpop isn’t the World Cup.

    I know, in this sort of exercise, you’ve got to draw lines somewhere though.

    Why? How do you know?

  145. 146
    James BC on 2 Jul 2013 #

    It’s a fun poll, and we’re drawing lines in order to make it even more fun.

  146. 147
    Cumbrian on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Because, in this sort of exercise, if you wish to sort anything (varieties of baked beans, tennis players, segments of a market, whatever), if you want to impose some sort of order on it, you have to put lines down. I know this is tautological – but the fact is, without the lines, you don’t have different groups to compare. And when you put the lines down, you inevitably wind up looking at people on fringes of groups and think, well, why are they there?

    It’s not the World Cup, you are right. On the other hand, it can be instructive, from the point of view of understanding the tastes of the people who have voted. What common features (if any) do bands in certain groups share? What does this tell us about the general taste of the people who have voted? You know – understanding other people’s points of view. The type of thing that we should all be doing (even if an exercise as laid out in 143 might not be the best way of doing it).

  147. 148
    punctum on 2 Jul 2013 #

    I’m interested in why people think the way they think, and how deeply people actually understand themselves.

    Why, for instance, do both of you persist in referring to yourselves as “we”?

    Furthermore, why do things have to be sorted? Is music a meat packing warehouse? Why do people need to have groups and fringes? Are they that afraid of themselves?

  148. 149
    Izzy on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Yeah Tom, why do things have to be sorted?

  149. 150
    Tom on 2 Jul 2013 #

    You’d probably actually segment stuff by looking at consistent voting patterns though – people who voted for X also voted for Y – and our polling app does not collect such NSA-level data ;)

    Things don’t have to be sorted of course :) Polls are the big mac of content – calorific (commentriffic) but not actually filling. However I’m pleased with how much this one caught on with the Twitter massive.

    One category: bands whose members actually tweeted this poll. Kenickie, Northern Uproar, Shed Seven, Menswe@r (a day after the fuss had died down). It feels like only Kenickie’s get-out-the-vote effort was remotely a success, which in turn says something about their fanbase.

  150. 151
    Cumbrian on 2 Jul 2013 #

    148: I have just checked both my recent posts. I have used we once. The missing words are “I think” in between “that” and “we” in the relevant sentence. Can you take them as read?

    The questions you raise in your third paragraph are interesting. I’ve done about 10 years now in Market Research (indeed, I first became aware of Tom – not that I know him, I know of him – through his day job and meandered into this site out of pure interest) and have looked through quite a few projects that talk about human desire to impose order on chaos, to try to generate further understanding of – even communality with – people who share a similar sense of order. Principally this was to do with my job – in order to actually make sense of masses of data for clients and help them take good courses of action, elements of sorting are needed. I found it interesting how much sorting was going on elsewhere when I stopped to think about it though.

    Of course, things don’t HAVE to be sorted. Nevertheless, I’ve tended to find some people find sorting helpful, so that they can start to form opinions about things. It also helps these people when others go through their lives helpfully sorting themselves (it allows us to form opinions about them – for instance, all of those guys going on EDL marches have helpfully sorted themselves into a group that I know I don’t want anything to do with, except to stand in opposition against them and the beliefs – and decide on actions that we might want to take) and sorting other objects (so that it is more easy to find them, etc).

    Looking at the list provided and then doing some sort of helpful sorting exercise can be helpful. For instance, my opinion of people who comment here is pretty high and, frankly, I think this is sort of a niche site that is likely (again, I think) to attract similar visitors to those who comment. Going through the exercise at 143 allows me to say to myself – maybe I should give Kenickie another listen – after all, a bunch of people who I think know what they’re talking about seem to have a high enough opinion of them that they might be as good as bands that I know I like (and indeed to be close to one of the leading lights of a particular musical scene, so listening to and trying to understand this might help me understand more about Britpop). I think this is helpful. You may think otherwise.

    On one level, though the aesthete in each of us would decry the notion, music can benefit from being looked at as a meat packing warehouse for some people – it’s about understanding what goes into certain neat boxes of music and why you might or might not connect with what is in those boxes. More deeply, particularly for younger people, it’s one of the markers (along with fashion and taste in books, TV, and myriad other things) that helps give kids a sense of both themselves and how they might relate to their friends, which groups they are interested in being part of and so on. This stuff is not new – Teddy Boys, Mods and Rockers, all of that falls into the same category. Once I’ve got a group, I’ve inevitably got things and people that lie more on the edge of the group; these are also interesting, in my opinion – as things that are on the fringes, if explored, might lead me to more interesting discoveries, widen my horizons and so on.

    I guess, put another way, I use FT as a site that interests me, certainly, but there are sites that operate on the fringes that link away from it (some are more fringe than others – most sites have similar agenda but are run by different people). One of these links lead me to TPL. TPL allows me to look at music in a different way, because it’s written differently, explores different music and expands my ideas about what is going on. By moving away from the middle of the FT group and towards a fringe, I’m helping myself – understand more, experience more and develop more. But helpfully, the site has sorted itself to allow me to work out what those fringes are (by use of the links) – and by hanging around long enough, I can work out who those fringes are being written by, so I can work out my likely interest level.

    I don’t know whether this stuff answers your questions. It probably doesn’t! Nevertheless, I’ve given it a stab in good faith. I don’t think it is about being afraid of myself, not do I think people who do sorting exercises are necessarily afraid of themselves. What I do think is that, for some, it is a viable way for making sense of the world and allowing themselves to understand, not just other people, but how they might expand their own experiences in ways that interest them. In this sense, sorting can be useful.

  151. 152
    Cumbrian on 2 Jul 2013 #

    148/150: Ah – as I was away for the weekend, I didn’t realise that the poll was being re-tweeted and thus that there were new visitors to the site. I guess that puts a bit of a different slant on what I wrote in para 4 of, what now seems to be, a bloody huge post. Apologies for rambling.

    Nevertheless, the poll has forced me to think more about Kenickie than I previously would have done. In a quiet moment later today, hopefully I will be able to dig out their stuff from some corner of the internet.

  152. 153
    James BC on 2 Jul 2013 #

    I didn’t refer to myself as “we” either. “We’re drawing lines” referred to Cumbrian and me: we both were.

    Anyway, sorry everyone. I thought bringing up categories would be a bit of fun. Whatever the above eight posts are, they don’t look like fun to me.


  153. 154
    punctum on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Fun is one of the most serious things known to man!

    #150: very good answer/explanation – it’s amazing how the Kenickie fanbase has sustained over the past 15 years or so. The general Lauren Laverne effect?

  154. 155
    Cumbrian on 2 Jul 2013 #

    I would guess that it is a Lauren Laverne effect to an extent. That said, there might be something else there in terms of the type and and intensity of fandom that Kenickie had/have.

    I remember, for instance, The Bluetones soldiering on for years being able to sell out reasonably sized halls because their fans were incredibly loyal (and given what I have learned about the tweeting of the poll, it makes me wonder whether anyone did similar to a Bluetones account/fandom and my memory is faulty – in that they didn’t turn up – or whether your average Bluetones fan is unaware of this poll).

    I have finally turfed up some Kenickie. On with the listening, whilst I write up some data.

  155. 156
    Tom on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Lauren Laverne didn’t tweet, I should say – in the pub on Friday this was described as the nuclear option (i.e. Kenickie would win the poll, and the site would probably crash). I get quite excited about big spikes of hits, which is silly given that we’re not an ad-supported site so eyeballs don’t matter: regular views and interaction are what keep us going.

  156. 157
    Tom on 2 Jul 2013 #

    When we were drawing up the shortlist, someone (Cis I think) said that she bracketed Kenickie in a different box from a lot of the rest, more of a fanzine thing. This is true, I think: the Britpop era is when I was reading zines a fair bit and most of them had a completely different set of values and pantheon. But it seemed to me like Kenickie fitted in a way Bis (mentioned above too) didn’t.

  157. 158
    punctum on 2 Jul 2013 #

    No Charlatans? I suppose strictly speaking they belong in a Madchester poll but there was significant Britpop overlap, I think. Not that I ever found them anything more than dreary, mind.

  158. 159
    Ed on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Never mind good / bad, league tables, World Cups etc.

    I am still waiting for someone to live up to the promise of the headline, and assign Britpop bands to their appropriate Hogwarts houses.

  159. 160
    thefatgit on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Northern Uproar = Hufflepuff!

  160. 161
    Mark M on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Re 157: I think that Kenickie were (among many other things), the 1990s version of Fuzzbox, but also – by way of support for your/possibly Cis’ argument – when they first arrived they seemed related to the poppier end of British riot grrl (which overall was poppier than the American stuff, anyway), most obviously represented by the Voodoo Queens.

    The sleeve for Come Out 2 Nite is definitely on the fanzine/RG tip, while the cover for the first album is very Britpop.

    What connects them to Britpop, what connects Maconie’s original notion to an archetypal fully formed Britpop moment like Inbetweener, is a return to specificity, a rejection of the shoegazers’ mantra of ‘we don’t want our lyrics to be pinned down – they can mean whatever you want them to mean.’

  161. 162
    Ed on 2 Jul 2013 #

    #161 If you’re right that comprehensible lyrics are a defining characteristic of Britpop – and I think you are – then where does that leave Oasis? As discussed on the Some Might Say thread, their lyrics are either convincingly delivered gibberish or artfully elusive, but never specific.

    It’s another reason – on top of the massive guitar sound and the crap rhythm section- why Oasis are really the apotheosis of shoegaze. They’re just looking at the ceiling, not the floor.

    Maybe Oasis weren’t really Britpop at all?

  162. 163
    Andrew Farrell on 2 Jul 2013 #

    Kenickie also benefit from getting in and out quick – one album brilliant from head to toe (if you’re a fan), one still very good if a little mellower, and that’s your lot. That they tend to get buried in the history of Britpop has I think only honed their fans’ ardour. Also they were brilliant.

  163. 164
    flahr on 2 Jul 2013 #

    #162 – I tend to think of Oasis as more of a grunge/post-grunge band.

  164. 165
    Ed on 2 Jul 2013 #

    #162 Think maybe I meant “artfully allusive”. Oh well, both work.

  165. 166
    swanstep on 3 Jul 2013 #

    OK, have finally got around to checking out some Kenickie on youtube,…and I’m quite impressed; good, tight songs, and very charming and amusing in interviews. Of course they’re at least somewhat good!

  166. 167
    Cumbrian on 3 Jul 2013 #

    Having sought out and listened to Kenickie in response to this, I’d say that they definitely meet the criteria for voting for them in this poll. Definitely better than I remembered (I thought they gave good interviews – as Swanstep mentions – but that was the main positive I had in my head about them) and enjoyed the obvious Mackem accent, which gives them a bit of a different spin to the other acts.

    Re: Oasis, I have said before and will repeat now – I don’t think they were Britpop. I think they’re stadium rock, mostly due to the anthemic choruses (though I can hear why people think of them as grunge/post grunge – Husker Du references in the SMS thread – or a bit shoegaze).

  167. 168
    tm on 3 Jul 2013 #

    Noel G always used to acknowledge Nirvana’s influence on Oasis, saying they were largely resposible for Oasis adding the wall of guitar noise to their early, pre-Creation, Roses-inspired sound (check Noel’s demo of Live Forever for the jangly, young Oasis http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jmC3553Q3Fo&safe=active)

    There’s definitely shoegaze in there too, especially on the outros of their early stuff.

  168. 169
    tm on 3 Jul 2013 #
  169. 170
    tm on 3 Jul 2013 #

    Fatgit @ 60: Who is Slytherin? Oasis? Kula Shaker? Damon?

  170. 171
    thefatgit on 3 Jul 2013 #

    Slytherin? First instincts are Black Grape, Oasis and Suede. I’m not applying any logic whatsoever to these choices.

    Gryffindor: Blur, Kenickie and Supergrass.

    Ravenclaw: Elastica, Gene and The Divine Comedy.

    WELLER is Dumbledore.

  171. 172
    tm on 3 Jul 2013 #

    Grumbledore more like…arf, arf…

  172. 173
    thefatgit on 3 Jul 2013 #

    Of course, He Who Must Not Be Named (in relation to Britpop, hence not on the list) released Southpaw Grammar in 1995.

  173. 174
    Conrad on 3 Jul 2013 #

    Wot, no Reef?

    The Kenickie placing rather skews things, but other than that it isn’t a very surprising list – so far.

    The jarvis Cocker factor must surely influence how Pulp are thought of, and why not.

    I’d have stuck the Verve in there, if only to give them a good kicking, but I guess that opportunity will come along soon enough.

    The only records from that list I can still listen to now are the first elastica album, the first two suede, the first two supergrass and a bit of (a) blur.

    And the middle 8 of Love is the law may be the single most rubbish thing I’ve ever heard.

    Britpop supergroup

    Danny from supergrass – drums
    Bernard B – lead guitar
    the bass player from kula shaker – er, bass
    Justine and Damon – lead vocals, how romantic

  174. 175
    flahr on 3 Jul 2013 #

    I love Suede’s third album! “The Chemistry Between Us”, “Picnic By The Motorway”, it’s all so wonderfully grand. But then I love “Stay Together” as well.

    (In fact, Coming Up > Sci-Fi Lullabies > Suede. I’ve still never actually listened to Dog Man Star aside from “Introducing the Band” so I can’t say where it fits in)

  175. 176
    23 Daves on 3 Jul 2013 #

    I love “Coming Up” as well, and I think it and “Dog Man Star” excellently showcased two different sides of the band’s personality, although I’m sure “Coming Up” didn’t have that concept behind it and was probably just intended to put them back in the commercial game. It’s just a shame that most of the rest of their output feels so inessential (half of “Suede” is great, but it sounds far patchier than a lot of people seem to give it credit for).

    Still, two fantastic albums in one career is a much better tally than most bands manage.

  176. 177
    Rory on 3 Jul 2013 #

    For me it fits here: Coming Up > Dog Man Star > Bloodsports > everything else.

  177. 178
    swanstep on 4 Jul 2013 #

    Heh, the discussion of Kenickie here has introduced me to a new word ‘mackem’. Its Urban Dictionary definitions are hilarious.

  178. 179
    Ed on 4 Jul 2013 #

    #168 “Noel G always used to acknowledge Nirvana’s influence on Oasis….”

    I’d never heard that. It’s a great fact. Heraclitus would have loved it:

  179. 180
    The Riverboat Captain on 4 Jul 2013 #

    Wot, no Manics?

  180. 181
    Tom on 5 Jul 2013 #

    I’m going to close this poll today when I put the next entry up, btw.

    Unless I don’t put the next entry up. But I will dammit.

  181. 182
    fivelongdays on 5 Jul 2013 #

    Hmm…the fact that Tom has hinted the next entry is going to long indicates it could well be in for a beasting! Interesting…

  182. 183
    weej on 5 Jul 2013 #

    Will we still be able to post comments? Britpop nuggets is imminent!

  183. 184
    Tom on 5 Jul 2013 #

    Oh totally – the thread remains! I’m just going to stop the voting, since we’ve already reached 3x the voters of any previous Freaky Trigger poll! Do you want to run Britpop Nuggets as a separate post, Weej?

  184. 185
    fivelongdays on 5 Jul 2013 #

    IMHO Britpop Nuggets ought to be a post on its own – I for onwle don’t want it to be subsumed at the bottom of a thread.

  185. 186
    weej on 5 Jul 2013 #

    Well, certainly I would, yes. How would I go about doing that? ETA is Monday morning.

  186. 187
    Tom on 5 Jul 2013 #

    Drop freakytrigger@gmail.com an email and we can sort something out!

  187. 188
    Patrick Mexico on 7 Jul 2013 #

    Always thought it was quite funny, but bizarre, that Richard Oakes, 17, was uprooted from school to join Suede.

    I’m trying to imagine the media reaction had they used exactly the same recruitment strategy with a female member.

  188. 189
    Izzy on 7 Jul 2013 #

    It was a pretty great move, if only because nobody else had ever dreamed of it (Mick Taylor definitely not the same thing). It would’ve been awful if they’d just got some session bloke.

  189. 190
    Tom on 7 Jul 2013 #

    I was working in the Music & Video Exchange Book And Comic Exchange just after Suede recruited Neil Codling (around the same time as Oakes). Codling came in one afternoon shortly after, I recognised him from the Melody Maker, and watched with interest as he blitzed our ‘cult books’ section, arriving at the counter with a foot-high pile of paperbacks by Kerouac, Burroughs, Bukowski, Hunter S Thompson, and others. He had a surprisingly gloomy look on his face. I have assumed to this day that Brett Anderson had presented him with a drug culture reading list.

  190. 191
    Izzy on 7 Jul 2013 #

    Hahaha. Brett lived just round the corner too, it all checks out.

    I wonder how Richard’s parents reacted to their son’s sixth-form project? He seems like a level-headed sort, but there’s many a seventeen-year-old wouldn’t’ve survived long being dropped into peak Suede.

  191. 192
    a tanned rested and unlogged lørd sükråt wötsît on 7 Jul 2013 #

    Hang on, this never-before-dreamt-of strategy (especially using schoolgirls) is EXACTLY how Susanne and Joanne were recruited into the Human League — spotted by Phil Oakey at a Sheffield disco dancing (poss.round handbags), while still schoolgirls doing their A-levels.

  192. 193
    a tanned rested and unlogged lørd sükråt wötsît on 7 Jul 2013 #

    And Michael Schenker was I think only 15 when he traded up from support group (the Scorpions, as led by his brother) to lead guitar in UFO — though I suppose that’s more Mick Taylorish, in that he was already touring Germany in a metal band, and hence I guess not in school any more really.

  193. 194
    a tanned rested and unlogged lørd sükråt wötsît on 7 Jul 2013 #

    So in short Eater >> Suede

  194. 195
    admin on 12 Jul 2013 #

    Worth marking here that Kenickie have had mixed fortunes on FT


  195. 196
    Patrick Mexico on 12 Jul 2013 #

    I was delighted to be tweeted by Menswear’s Johnny Dean himself this week.. (though perhaps I was being condescending, so to atone, I bought Nuisance from Amazon for, er, £1.27. Genuinely can’t wait – always thought Daydreamer was a masterpiece of cocky, minimalist punk-pop. Strangely, used to think it was Billy Idol.)


  196. 197
    Tom on 13 Jul 2013 #

    I’ve closed the poll now, well done the new official “Big Three” of Britpop: Pulp, Blur and Kenickie. Bad luck the Uproar BUT! their moment will come as they feature on Weej’s BRITPOP NUGGETS which will hopefully be up this weekend.

  197. 198
    Patrick Mexico on 4 Aug 2013 #

    Many would put The Charlatans in the “Madchester” box but One To Another was possibly my favourite Britpop song. A fearless, cathartic response to the tragic death of Rob Collins… so much of a brick shithouse of an anthem even “Be your Spiderwoman, I’ll be your Spiderman” was something you could laugh with, rather than at. Though the intro does sound like the “Such and such a body’s [colours of team] army” chant and a tiny bit uncomfortable with anything hinting at the blanket football, “birds” and boozing obsession – the lack of anyone (apart from Pulp and Welsh Bunnies YET AGAIN!) to comment sagely on how it might be slightly fucking things up ensured Britpop was never much fun again after c. September 1996.

  198. 199
    Patrick Mexico on 4 Aug 2013 #

    A slightly embargoed MSBWT record, but on 8/9/96 the #2 to One to Another’s #3 was just as great – Kula Shaker’s Hey Dude. No flaming swastikas (Hindu or Hitler), no dubious politics, not much “just butthurt as I was 30 years too late for the Beatles meeting Ravi Shankar!” Just great, infectious Madchester. With images of tombstones, IMAGES OF TOMBSTONES. Unfortunately, they were held off number 1 by a certain girl group hell-bent on ruining the fine art of stream-of-consciousness lyrics.. that debut hit also brought the curtain down on Britpop’s imperial phase. But more – maybe excessively – on them later.

  199. 200
    23 Daves on 5 Aug 2013 #

    Has anyone noticed this review of Northern Uproar’s latest album on The Quietus yet? http://thequietus.com/articles/12942-northern-uproar-all-that-was-has-gone-review

    Somebody still loves them, obviously. I’m speechless.

  200. 201
    Ed on 7 Aug 2013 #

    @200 – Now that is impressive. Hard to imagine a sharper hipster move in 2013 than being a massive Northern Uproar fan.

  201. 202
    Patrick Mexico on 12 Aug 2013 #

    I just listened to Monday Morning by the Candyskins on Spotify. It’s quite possibly the worst song ever recorded.

  202. 203
    swanstep on 13 Aug 2013 #

    @202, Patrick. MM’s not *that* bad! A little dull, yes, but worse than even the worst thing in just the current charts? I don’t think so. That said, I’ve always slightly resented The Candyskins their ordinariness, since I’ve always assumed they took their name from this classic from The Fire Engines (who were essential listening if you were of a certain age).

  203. 204
    Cumbrian on 13 Aug 2013 #

    Goodbye to Jon Brookes – drummer for The Charlatans. Long term battle with a brain tumour apparently.

    Not Britpop according to this thread (and probably were Madchester/baggy holdovers), but mentioned in this thread, so I’ll file it here.

  204. 205
    Patrick Mexico on 13 Aug 2013 #

    Re 203: Well, do not underestimate the power of postwhoring! (And girls with plaits and very strange heads.)

    Hardly the most original thing I’ll ever post, but the Best Song Ever is a strong contender for the worst song ever.

  205. 206
    Patrick Mexico on 13 Aug 2013 #

    Re 204 – on a serious note: yes, terrible news. And to think only a few days back, on this very page, I was celebrating the fact he was talismanic in one of my favourite pieces of music. RIP.

  206. 207

    […] pop culture website, Freaky Trigger, published a poll about Britpop bands yesterday, which got me thinking about the genre and its cover […]

  207. 208
    Alan not logged in on 10 Apr 2014 #

    For more of your Britpop polling requirements there’s 6music http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p01tmt65

    Do you think we should adopt a polling “code of conduct” or T&C? (No, we should not – or we’ll end up with members of Kenickie NOT tweeting links)

  208. 209
    Tom on 10 Apr 2014 #

    I am a member of the Market Research Society so our polls are naturally guaranteed to operate to the highest professional standards.

  209. 210
    weej on 26 Oct 2015 #

    A couple of years later, here’s the now legendary Britpop Nuggets; 3 CDs, 10,000 words and an October of creative procrastination when I really should have been looking for a new job (anyone have any Director of Studies or EAP Tutor vacancies in Europe?)

    Britpop Nuggets Part One: Some People are Born to Dance

    Britpop Nuggets Part Two or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Tolerate Northern Uproar

    Britpop Nuggets Part Three: Long Live The UK Music Scene

  210. 211
    Adam Puke on 27 Oct 2015 #

    Good collection. I was expecting vol 3 to be chuck-yourself-off-a-bridge material accompanied by dour, er, ‘sleevenotes’ but the positive turn you took with Earl Brutus, Helen Love and David Devant was a pleasant surprise. Arguably a splash of Romo and maybe even something from Bis or Urusei Yatsura could’ve been included as part of this forward-looking aspect but that’d feck up the ‘cursed Scots’ line ;-)

    Which I’d largely agree with. The Gyres might as well have come from Bolton, Whiteout were Bandwagonesque-jumpers a couple of years too late while Octopus’ (subconscious?) attempt at the ultimate mockney Loaded gesture in recruiting the son of a Great Train Robber looks seriously desperate in this context. Still have some fondness for the latter two, mind.

  211. 212
    weej on 27 Oct 2015 #

    Yes, I diverted from the main thrust at the end to move into commentary (which also gave it a nice symmetry with Denim & Auteurs) but basically wanted to avoid the Glasgow scene entirely as it was conspicuously *a different thing* and also possibly my favourite scene of all time and deserving of its own separate, probably superior compilation, which I might get around to in another couple of years.

  212. 213
    Tommy Mack on 28 Oct 2015 #

    Cracking piece of writing, Weej. Made me quite nostalgic. Will throw a few thoughts up about specific bands here shortly. I also read the linked interview with Jamie Harding. Christ, drugs are not good for you.

  213. 214
    Tommy Mack on 29 Oct 2015 #

    So, the question on all of our minds, do we think Skinny White Thing by Shampoo is about Brett Anderson?


  214. 215
    swanstep on 2 Nov 2015 #

    @210, weej. Thanks so much for your Britpop Nuggets cds. I’m really enjoying them. At least 70% of the tracks are new to me, underlining that if you were in the US at the time (and say following a mixture of MTV and college radio) you only heard the top-tier of Britpop (whereas, e.g., you ended up completely familiar with 4th or 5th tier grunge and industrial acts).

Add your comment

(Register to guarantee your comments don't get marked as spam.)


Required (Your email address will not be published)

Top of page