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Give me music and give me noise....

Saturday, 9 February 2013

The U.K. Subs miss out on a desert island trip

Some advice. If you like music it's probably best not to listen to Desert Island Discs. The tunes, even when they're half-decent (not often), are given such a cursory airing - faded out early and tersely back-mentioned as the show quickly returns to its main focus (cloying chat) - that it's positively indecent. There's virtually zero discussion of what's being played, never mind that this is a programme ostensibly about people's favourite music and why they like it.

Anyway, you probably knew all that. And despite this I still listen to the programme (I'm a masochist like that). I think there must be some mysterious attraction to wondering what songs people will choose, even when from their first selections it should be patently obvious that they're not going to go for anything even remotely good.

Except ... what's this! The ex-Tesco bloke Terry Leahy meandering his way through The Beatles, The Fureys and Simon & Garfunkel when ... all of a sudden he says: "It was 1980 and I was in London living in a flat above where this punk rock band called The U.K. Subs used to practise and play at all hours ...".

Blimey. What a turn-up. After all that I-came-from-a-modest-background-but-I-always-had-strong-opinions-I-worked-hard-at-my-A-levels-then-went-to-Tesco-where-we-serve-our-customers-no-one-is-forced-to-shop-in-supermarkets-the-rest-is-history nonsense, here we were going to get a little blast of the Subs' rough-and-ready punkoid stuff. Great! Glad I'd stuck with it.

So what does the bloody Checkout Charlie say next? "Don't worry Kirsty, I'm not going to make you play The U.K. Subs, but instead Depeche Mode, I Just Can't Get Enough". Aggghhh. Amazing! No explanation, just a swerve that was almost perfect in its unintended comedy. Leahy's defeat-from-the-jaws-of-victory was a moment of bathetic brilliance and deserves preserving for posterity.

In fact I'd like to request that self-same piece of audio as one of my record choices if ever I get to go on Desert Island Discs to talk about my own illustrious career. "And Niluccio, you're allowed to take one luxury item with you, what would you take?" "Well Kirsty, I'd like a big box of Tesco cucumbers. They're selling cucumbers for 90 pence each at Tesco at the moment, so I think a large box of those would be a luxury indeed." "Niluccio they're yours, and thank you for sharing your desert island discs with us this morning ....".

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