The song was a perfect pop moment. The songs all embracing lyrics and anti war themes celebrated the comradeship in the trench between the German and British troops in the First World War. A comradeship that was the theme on the terraces and in the clubs in 1990. A huge hit during xmas 1990 the anthem was at the heart of tshe optimistic rush of the period. A time that was drenched with E and everything felt possible – an impossibly halcyon time compared to now!
Back in Christmas 1914 peace broke out in the trenches as the soldiers from the opposing German and allied armies played footy instead of slaughtering each other in a war caused by bickering royals.
For a band like The Farm all the theme were in place – footy, left wing people power politics, unity and fight for your right not to fight and party. Right in the middle of the E revolution the song with its hook borrowed from Pachabels Cannon at the suggestion of the band’s Steve Grimes has become an anthem.
The song now has a life of its beyond the band who defied some of the snobbier music press who termed them ‘plumbers’ (as if thats an insult!) by becoming film makers, key cultural figures in hometown Liverpool and senior college lecturers. Back then they were Scouse ragamuffins who had found culture fame with singer Peter Hooton’s football and music fanzine The End that invented the football fanzine with detailed terrace fashion and culture piss takes hilarious wit backed up by a sharp cultural nous.
In this interview Peter Hooton talks about the song’s message of friendship and camaraderie that is much needed in these pandemic times as well as the background to the song and the band and the times it was forged in…
The song remains a football favourite too and has regularly appeared on football related compilations in the three decades since its release.
To celebrate the track entering the UK charts 30 years ago this week BMG are releasing a new digital compilation containing 9 mixes of the track all of
which are currently unavailable digitally and many which have never appeared on digital platforms.
Highlights include the original 7 inch edit, an unreleased instrumental and hard-to-find remixes by 90s Junior Boys Own dance luminaries Farley and Heller and Rocky and Diesel.
A newly restored HD version of its original 1990 promo video will be released this week available which again has a heart-warming theme to match the track with a cameo from legendary son of Liverpool, singer Pete Wylie!