The quality of light around this time of year

I don’t know if you’ve heard about the layer of smoke that’s covering Florida at the moment. There have been wildfires and no rain, so the sky has been varying shades of black and white for a while. It’s left me with a really dry, sore throat, and no intention to leave the house.

Also, it made me think of this song from Brighton’s Clearlake. Not really sure why, it’s not winter, nor is it especially light these days. But still, it’s a terrific song. I caught the band at the Monarch in London once as part of Camden Crawl (2000, maybe?), where they played after where-are-they-now? Northern rockers The Action Spectacular. Clearlake clearly came across as divs – posh lads from the coast who said things like “What day is it? Is it Sunday?” and “Is anyone else as drunk as we are?” which grated, but all was forgiven once they started playing songs from their then-unreleased debut album.

I don’t get to use this word often enough, so: MAELSTROM. They make a relentless spiral of noise, melody, sadness and good drumming. I haven’t really fallen for their subsequent two albums as much as ‘Lido’, which brings chiming guitars, BBC TV’s ‘Songs of Praise’ and Jason Pegg’s curiously not-annoying nasal voice to joyous heights.

‘Winterlight’ is the last song on the album, and a veritable monster.

[download Clearlake - Winterlight]

[buy 'Lido']


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