Great Northern Albums #1 Easterhouse “contenders”

I was kindly asked to nominate an album for “The Orchids Sunday Album Slot”. I thought this was a great idea. One good enough to steal for the Northern Line. Below are my thoughts on Contenders by that great lost band; Easterhouse. Do you have an album that fits into this? Let us know as we would like to make it a regular feature…….

I’ve thought long and hard about my Sunday fave album slot. Do I pick an obvious LP that everyone knows or an obscure band no one has heard of? A band from Scotland in homage to our hosts; The Orchids? Or a band named after a council estate in Glasgow? That’ll do…….

Easterhouse hail from Manchester and came to my attention supporting The Smiths in Edinburgh, September 85. They were the next big thing for a while but their militant stance and use of some questionable imagery meant they remain a footnote on the page titled “80s indie”. But they left us Contenders. One of my all time favourite albums.
The album opens with one of the angriest political rants ever put down on vinyl; “Out on your own”. Their left wing mantra hurling abuse at the unions, the Labour Party and anything that gets in their way. If Andy Perry thought labour had lost its edge in 86 God only knows what he thinks of Ed Miliband!!!
Great track follows great track. Intelligent, hard hitting lyrics spat out with venom and anger over music that is both jangly guitars and hard edged rock.
“Get back to Russia” angrily demands the listener to reflect on the so called freedoms we take for granted versus a communist state we know little about. This was in the days of the Cold War when if you didn’t support Reagan and the USA you were labelled a traitor and a communist!
Other great tracks are “To live like this”, “The boy can sing” and my personal favourite “1969″. Do bands write songs about political struggle any more? Are bands as angry as this anymore? A superb album that deserves to be heard.

“They tell me my home is a “Nuclear Free Zone” That ain’t much help when there’s bills to be paid”.

By peter on November 30, 2014

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