Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Sickening Twist

Amongst all the recent rockstar casualties, the untimely passing of Tony Ogden gave PV greatest pause. Tony was the lead singer with early-90s post-Madchester pop minstrels World Of Twist, and like a lot of people of a certain age, it seems, Dead Kenny hunted out his vinyl copy of their debut album 'Quality Street' to give it a few spins over the weekend.

First heard the WOT noise when Peel played 'The Storm', the swirly, spacey standout track on 'Home', a compilation of tunes from mainly under-the-radar Manchester(ish) bands (others included Paris Angels; Milltown Brothers and What! Noise) trying to catch the tailspin of the Roses/Mondays baggy bonanza. On the back of this and some eccentric live performances, the band signed to Circa Records but despite a couple of fine taster singles ('Sweets' and 'Sons Of The Stage'), by the time 'Quality Street' was shared with the public their hype had dissipated and the group soon got lost amidst the weeklies' new-found love of all things grunge.

Dipping into 'Quality Street' again your correspondent was struck by the almost complete absence of filler and the bold visuals of the gatefold cover (the group dressed as chocolate-box soldiers on the outside, sharp-suited mods on their scooters inside) but also by the yearning; romanticism and natural grace of their songs. Listening to tracks so infused with optimism, knowing that the singer and co-writer has been found dead so young (early 40s) and in such mysterious circumstances added an almost unbearable poignancy to the listening experience.

Buying a copy of 'QS' now might set you back about £30, so if you're squeamish about shelling out that sort of money these mp3s should act as decent tasters (via The Daily Growl).

Tony Ogden RIP. Maybe he'll meet up with his Rocket Girl in another world.


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