This week marks the Cherry Red release of the second and final half of the Felt discography reissue campaign, one that focuses roughly on their era at Creation Records. Although the group had always released singles, the switching of labels found them starting to focus on the 12 inch EP format. For the purposes of the deluxe CD/7 inch single box set, Lawrence elected to stick to the singles as they were originally released in 7″ format. Thus, some songs have been omitted, and while omissions might seem to reflect a lack of quality, that is most certainly not the case here. While the label has informed me there are no current plans for a remastered singles compilation, this week I want to highlight those fantastic b-sides, because I truly believe they deserve to be heard.
“Primitive Painters” was and is one of the finest songs of the 1980s, as well as one of Lawrence’s greatest musical accomplishments. Although the back catalog has been in and out of print for years, the label rightly decided to keep this song easily available. In 1992, it was reissued as a three song CD single, and instead of the original b-side–a fantastic and superior rerecording of”Cathedral”–-it was decided to include two previously unreleased tracks, both taken from a 1983 demo recorded for Blanco Y Negro. “Sunlight Bathed The Golden Glow,” was originally released in 1984 as a single, and in appeared in slightly different form on their masterful third album,The Strange Idols Pattern And Other Short Stories. In subsequent years it too has become a signature Felt song; it’s catchy, upbeat melody not only channels Lou Reed, but it stands as a truly definitive song for the band. This early version doesn’t quite have the polish of the album or the single version, but what it lacks in sheen, it makes up for in attitude; Lawrence sounds positively snotty, his voice having a toughness that rarely appeared in the finished product. The almost amphetamine-paced melody is rushed, but it’s this frantic performance that gives this demo version its charm.
If, after listening to that wonderful song, you think that the melody sounds familiar, I would like you to participate in the following exercise:
- Click here.
- Now click here.
- Now, click here.
- Draw your own conclusions.
Ya learn something new every day, don’t ya?