Thursday, April 21, 2011

Blast from the Past: Some Friendly

Title:  Some Friendly (Amazon, AllMusic, Wikipedia)
Artist:  The Charlatans UK (Official, MySpace,, AllMusic, Wikipedia)

Back in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, prior to the explosion of Nirvana, the hot city in alternative music was Manchester, England.  This city was not only responsible for acts such as The Smiths and New Order, but also a new crop of bands that would influence a slew of other artists by mixing dance beats, organs, and strong baselines.  These bands influenced everyone from lesser known acts like The Farm, The Dylans, The La’s, and Chapterhouse to big acts like Blur and Oasis.  Thee bands that started this movement were The Stone Roses, Happy Mondays, and The Charlatans UK. 

Some Friendly, The Charlatan UK debut album, is a fun house romp with great numbers like the classics “The Only One I Know” and “White Shirt.”  This was one of the first albums that I got when I started getting really involved with the underground music scene when I was a sophomore in high school.  I was immediately drawn to the fun beat of the music and have loved this record ever since.  As my own music tastes evolved over the years, I stopped following The Charlatans but I still own a copy of Some Friendly (and its follow up) and still love these songs.  Like a lot of music from a specific era, I’m not sure how well this translates to the modern listener but maybe there are bands over in England that grew up on these records making new music and I’ve just never heard them.  Either way this is a great record that really captures the vibe of the era.

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