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Sunday, 1 August 2010

~Kitten Wine~#13: Flipper's Guitar

As Oscar Wilde once said "There is only one thing in the world better than Scottish Indie-pop music from the 1980s, and that is Scottish Indie-pop music from the 1980s being eulogised in song by a pair of besotted Japanese musicians trading under the name of Flipper's Guitar!"
Okay so it's not one of his most memorable quotes but it is one of his most accurate.

Flipper's Guitar were a Pop duo comprising Keigo Oyamada and Kenji Ozawa who hailed from Tokyo and were inspired mostly by British, and even more, Scottish Pop music. Their main love appeared to be the whole Postcard scene as well as Aztec Camera, Teenage Fanclub and The Pastels. What I like about the duo is their lack of snobbery, for they also openly admit a love for and cite as an influence bands like Haircut 100, The Style Council and The Colourfield. In Britain we'd all be too snobby to admit EVER liking those bands.

Our reason for choosing to feature Flipper's Guitar is their wonderful single 'Goodbye Our Pastels Badges'(from 1989 no less, Hooray!!). This is a wonderful, vibrant, energetic piece of sparkling Pure Pop which is as infectious as hell and features a litany of Scottish Indie Pop references in the lyrics....have a read and see:

" Bye! Goodbye our Pastels badges
But it means some kind of happy birthday
Hey, beatnik boys! all you Blue Boys!
Teenage kicks can't die
A Postcard from Scotland says it's still raining hard in the highlands
Though there's nothing going on
I hear the truck and train now
Let's have our fringes cut just like James Kirk did long ago
But our hairdresser should be a boy
And he should have three wishes in his heart
Take, take off the badges from our anoraks
Put, put them into the drawers
And we swear we'll never forget that feeling
So goodbye, goodbye
On the subway sometimes so sad
But a razor appears and cuts
Yes, our lollipops were something pure
So let's take off our favorite shirts"

(You'll have to take my word for it, the track below DOES feature music, it just doesn't start till about 20 seconds in)

If you're trying to figure out the references, here they are in order; The Pastels, Altered Images(Happy Birthday), Orange Juice(Blue Boy), The Undertones(Teenage Kicks[yes, I know they're not Scottish]), Postcard Records, Aztec Camera(High Land Hard Rain), The Pastels again(Truck Train Tractor), Orange Juice again(a reference to guitarist James Kirk's fringe), Teenage Fanclub(The Fannies were originally called The Boy Hairdressers), Subway Records, Razorcuts(again not Scottish), and finally the not-Scottish Haircut 100(Favourite Shirts).

Flipper's Guitar released three albums from 1989 to 1993 when they split up. They are 'Three Cheers for Our Side!'(from which this track was taken), 'Camera Talk' and 'Doctor Head's World Tower', plus a live album 'On Pleasure Bent'. All albums are pretty tricky to track down now should you be interested in pursuing them.
Here is the live version of the song:

A fine tribute to Scottish Pop Music by two guys who really worshipped at it's altar.

Put simply, if you don't like this track then you really don't like music!

Ye Gods, we're simply thrilled!!


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