Captain Misery's Miserable Mishaps

It's all a load of bollocks, quite frankly

>The Lightning Seeds – Change

>Right, for the second installment of Song of the Week. This week is the first of many Lightning Seeds songs that are likely to feature.

The Lightning Seeds started out in the late 1980s as a side project for Ian Broudie – a respected record producer and ex-band member for legendary Liverpool punk band Big In Japan, a band more famed not for being successful but for spawning band members that would later have a successful career (Holly Johnson, Bill Drummond et al). Initially a low-key affair it allowed Broudie to make some of his own music and continue to help and produce other acts.

The debut single was Pure, a gem of a song that went to number 16 in the charts. Two albums – Cloudcuckooland and Sense – and a trio of top 50 hits – The Life of Riley, Sense and Lucky You all preceded the fabulous hit single Change.

Change was released in January 1995 and was the second single released from Jollification. The album and this single would prove to be the turning point for the band. Firstly it would provide their biggest chart hit to date reaching number 13, but also it could no longer be classed as a one-man’s-side project. Signed to a new label which took the band seriously, they were now a serious proposition and with a touring line-up put together, Ian Broudie would now focus full time on the Lightning Seeds. Touring the US and a new outlook to making videos resulted in the glossy and well produced promotional video for Change. The packaging also signified better promotion and marketing. It was released in four formats – 7″ vinyl, cassette and two CD singles – with unique artwork. Now all the artwork surrounding Jollification-era singles had strawberries of some kind, and this was probably the best example complete with Groucho Marx disguises. The digi-pak had a pull-out section where you could “Change” (geddit???) the strawberry into a disguised one. This is rocket science stuff, this you know!

This was the song that got me into the band in the first place. I’d seen the video on things like the Chart Show and also had a Top Gear compilation where this little gem was hidden in amongst some ace rock songs. This is the song I remember playing the most and wanted to know more about the band that did it. Turns out they made songs I already knew – The Life of Riley and Sense. I found a copy of Jollification in my local independent record shop, which is alas, no more. I’ve never really looked back, as Jollification to date remains my firm favourite album of all time. If you don’t own it, why not? You really, really should.

There are a couple of versions of the song, the album version and the single edit. Don’t bother with the single version as it cuts out a portion of the guitar break and a verse. What remains on both versions is the driving guitar through the song with a distinctive lead guitar sound. A light, bouncy bass line added to quite effective synthesized drums, this makes up a fantastic pop song. Naturally, though, the best version of the song is when played live. After finally seeing them live after a fifteen year wait, I got to see them in April of this year, and the live performance puts a whole new energy into the song.



Watch the video:


October 18, 2010 - Posted by | Music

1 Comment »

  1. >Marvellous!

    Comment by Stamptree | October 19, 2010 | Reply

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