Timothy C Holehouse/LAN Formatique
Cassette. No label.
The Undermeister recommended ‘Bradford’s Noise of the Valleys - A History of Bradford Rock and Pop 1967-1987’. It was a book I’d half looked at when it came out a couple of years ago but had totally forgotten about and there I was in Jumbo Records on Saturday morning buying a couple of choice items and there it was up on the shelf. So i asked the guy behind the counter if I could have a look and he hands me the book and the four CD’s that come with it and it all looks great in a hand written rock family tree, old newspaper clippings, flyers kind of way but the print on the CD insert was so small I could hardly read it but what the hell £25 for all that it seemed like a bargain. Later that day I’m perusing the book and getting all nostalgic at the mention of the 1 in 12 Club and The Market Tavern and I’m half way down my bottle of red when I realise that the disc number one contains a Smokie track called Back to Bradford. Smokie hailed from Gomersal [ask Mutant Ape George] a small village which I eventually came to live in for six years. They were a big deal in the 70’s but to us they were just a run of the mill pop band who we would never take seriously.
It must have been 1979 or ’80 when eight of those Smokie hating Skynyrd loving school leavers went to the South of France for a two week beach holiday. All the way to the South of France on a 52 seater charabanc and when we’re about 50 miles away from the Med what does the driver shove in the cassette player? Only Smokie’s greatest bleeding Hits thats all. I’ve never forgiven him for it. On that album [whatever Smokie album it was] there was the track Back to Bradford and I’m thinking we’ve just done 700 hundred miles in a shitty, sweaty cramped bus with no bog all the way from Bradford and for two weeks the last place on earth that matters to me is Bradford and here were Smokie going ‘I’m going back to Bradford its what I prefer’ and I’m thinking you must be off your fucking nut to think that you daft sods. Here we are in 90f temperatures surrounded by beautiful women with tanned bodies and your saying that a dismal pile of bricks and curry shops is the best place on earth? And from that day until yesterday I’d never heard Back to Bradford but whilst I was halfway down my bottle of red that same opening glam rock intro riff came out of the speakers and I was back on that bus and thinking about all the good times we had during those two weeks. Which got me to thinking how remarkable the human brain is, storing that information from thirty years ago and in the space of a few seconds it had made the connection - here’s that song you heard thirty years ago and heres all the memories that go with it. A remarkable instrument the human brain, a pity some folks never use them.
I don’t suppose I’ll be having that same connection moment in thirty years time when it comes to Timothy C Holehouse and Lan Formatique. If I’m still alive in thirty years time these two will be but distant memories. In fact you’d have to pull off a printed copy of this review and shake it in front of my half blind eyes just to begin the memory jogging process. Such is the anonymity of what has just passed. On a muddy cassette appears two sides of vibrating, reverbed two phase drone [Holehouse] and Sunn O))) 10th generation live bootleg recorded on a dictaphone that was in the back pocket of a fat person wearing heavy wool serge trousers who was sat down on the floor above whilst having a rest from all his burger eating [LAN Formatique]. I can’t even remember who gave me this, probably came with a Jase Williams package. Another piece of flotsam.
I think I’ll have a run out to Bradford, its been a while since I was last there.
Bradford’s Noise of the Valleys - www.bradfordnoise.com