A FLOCK OF SEAGULLS – “Wishing (I Had A Photograph Of You) (Extended Mix)”

What really gets me about nostalgia clipshows is their desire to get everyone remembering the same 80s. It’s the same objection I have to Top 100 polls – hands off my experience, fuckers! It’s the same objection people who don’t like music in ads have to music in ads, too, and the Sinker Argument (as seen on ILM threads passim) applies – to reject ad-music is to acknowledge its potential power over you. I dislike canonisation because I feel all sorts of cultural guilt and resentment about not liking so much of the canon. Similarly the False Memory implant regimens of I Love The 80s or School Disco annoy me because I’m so vulnerable to them.

Take A Flock Of Seagulls. Everyone knows AFOS – that haircut, man! And what was their song – the photograph one? – yeah, that was great. I know them too. Except I don’t think I ever saw or heard them in the 80s. In fact I think that the first time I heard “Wishing” was a few weeks ago when I downloaded this (presumably 12″) mix off an FTP site. You all know them better than me, so I won’t bother too much with description except to say that the extended mix is staggering, a strength-through-length move that just keeps getting grander and grander until eventually it ends though in some higher dimension you suspect it cycles on still. It’s an unusual 80s 12″ in that there is no drum break fuckery to keep the minutes quota up.

Actually I love drum break fuckery. “Dub mixes” where the ahem tricknology extended as far as fake scratching on the chorus – “The Reflex – R-r-r-r-reflex – “ and so on. Those are what my friends and I used to get nostalgic about, about the 80s, in the 90s, so much so that one of my friends made me a 12″ mix tape, heavy on the Ben Liebrand, he got bored after one side but I still laughed. Now when we’re sitting in a pub and waxing nostalgic there’s this nibbling guilt, embarrassed meta-references to Andrew Collins and Kate Thornton and “What were we thinking?”. They’ve ruined it for everyone: no more golden eggs, just a rather thin buffet of goose sandwiches.

These scatty reheated thoughts are a poor replacement for a piece which should have gone up on Freaky Trigger, also – sort of – about memories and nostalgia, by the Pinefox. It’s been delayed by formatting problems. I’m moving house this weekend and may be in computer limbo where I can update NYLPM but not the site proper. Next week me and my two new co-editors are going to sit down and work out a masterplan for getting FT back on track – if you fancy joining in your ideas and submissions are of course very welcome. Meanwhile go and listen to that Flock Of Seagulls track, it’s smashing.