Monday, August 28


The Lightning Seeds may or may not be the latest entry in my "dead bands" series. For one thing, this was always a "band" that had the "one-man show" thing going on. That man would be Ian Broudie, who has made his name producing artists from Echo & the Bunnymen to the Zutons; the Coral to I Am Kloot. For a second thing, Broudie has had a habit of pulling the "band" out of mothballs every now and again, though the only recent release was a best-of collection back in June (only available in the U.S. as an import).

As a creative entity, the Lightning Seeds has never received a great deal of credit. Somehow, the sound was deemed too "clean"; "whispy"; "lite." All Music Guide writer Alex Ogg all-but-tore Mr. Broudie a new one when reviewing the album Dizzy Heights: "[the Lightning Seeds are still] obsess[ed] with the perfect '60s pop song, polite guitars, and saccharine vocals on an endless quest to rewrite 'Unchained Melody'." Now, for one thing, "Unchained Melody" is a pretty great song - one capable of overcoming the awful image of Patrick Swayze playing in clay. Beyond that, there's plenty of room in my life (and perhaps yours) for the occasional foray into "clean, whispy" pop.

From the LP Cloudcuckooland, 1989 >>>
[MP3] "Pure"

From the LP Jollification, 1994 >>>
[MP3] "Lucky You"

From the LP Dizzy Heights, 1996 >>>
[MP3] "You Showed Me"
[MP3] "Sugar Coated Iceberg"

From the LP Tilt, 1999 >>>
[MP3] "Sweetest Soul Sensations"


Anonymous said...

"Pure" is my favorite song (along with about another 50 or so that have been proclaimed as such by me). Nothing else on that CD grabbed me as much, but I'll check out the mp3's.

Bruce K

Kell Ryan Dockham said...

"Sweetest Soul Sensations" was the best pop single of 2000. Seriously. And "Dizzy Heights" from a few years before that is actually a pretty phenomenal album, including songwriting and vocals from Terry Hall(!) It sounds to me as though that All Music Guide reviewer simply doesn't like this KIND of music. Thus, he should leave reviewing it to those who actually get it. The Lightning Seeds had moments of pure sugary crystalline shiny pop perfection and were pretty ace at certain moments. Nothing more, nothing less.