Groove Farm

album review

The Groove Farm: The Surf Shop / Baby Blue Marine (Overkill) (Raving Pop Blast Recordings)

DL / Limited Vinyl**

Available now to pre-order

C86-C89 Indie-punk groovers reissue out of print classics for connoisseurs of Garage Indie from the late Eighties, plus a reunion live set from 2017.  But how many times can you listen to the same song, asks Ged Babey? 

Quite, quite ludicrous.

Two mini-albums on one piece of 12 inch blue vinyl. One side a rumbustious 24 minute live set. The other?

Ten different versions of the same song!

Every available recording of Baby Blue Marine: the demo, the single, the four-track, a session version and live versions… Thankfully the song only lasts a minute and a half and it is one of those songs that as-soon-as-it finishes, you want to hear-it-again…  Well, actually, each version has a completely different length to the last: from 1 minute 13 seconds to 2:09.  Luckily it is a solid gold classic (of it’s ilk).

‘Baby Blue Marine’ since first appearing on the Pre-Sarah Records Kvatch Flexi disc, has gone on to become the greatest song of the 1980’s as voted for by listeners of JAY JAY’S Breakfast Show on Radio BS15

Here you get to enjoy it over and over in various different versions! You can chose for yourself which one you like the best, but the bottom line is they’re all ace!

This is  probably the best, in my humble opinion, capturing a kind of midway point between prime Buzzcocks and Jesus & Mary Chain yet simultaneously having a charm all of its own.

The live set I didn’t realise was recorded in 2017 (until I read the small-print)- the energy and sound could well have been from the band in it’s youth. Whether it’s my ears or Arthurs diction I don’t know but I swear that during In The Summertime he sings ‘Suppertime’.

I have oddly discovered the Groove Farm >Beatnik Filmstars > the Total Rejection in reverse chronological order – which is a disorientating yet satisfying experience. I would say that they get better with age – but they were always modestly fab all along. The Jarrett / Kent / Rippington and associates back catalogue is huge and inspirational.  Heart on sleeve, rickety and ramshackle, shambling and hyper-active, perfectly imperfect pop.

Buy from Bandcamp

** Limited to 101 copies! A Blue Vinyl 12″ LP. Sleeves are beautifully hand made . With a ‘Lucky Bag’ – 8 postcards (of old gig posters!!) Bubblegum! stickers! & inserts! 

Loads of other great music can be found on Raving Pop Blast – I particularly recommend THIS Fanzine and Compilation CDAlterModerns! The Groove Farm! The Courettes! The Total Rejection! Next Phase:Normal Records! Mike Nesmith/ Monkees, Cuttings! Reviews! and More! Comes with 16 Track CD sampler ‘When Are You Gonna Quit & Get A Real Job’ Featuring all your faves on RPB! The CD is not for sale separately” 

… and there is a Groove Farm  7″ Lathe cut single… 

All words by Ged Babey Press Release content in italics.

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Ged Babey is 56. from Southampton, has written since 1985 for Sound Info, Due South, various fanzines and websites, contributed to Record Collector magazine and was sole author of 'Punk Throwback' fanzine -the name of which was taken from an insult hurled at him by the singer with a young band he managed for a while. Ged believes that all good music and art has a connection with punk rock.


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