5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Watch the dawn in sick amazement,
This review is from: Daunt Square To Elsewhere: Anthology 1982-88 (Audio CD)
A very welcome release. It's about time the wonderful Microdisney received the attention they deserved. What's really needed, of course, is a full re-issuing of all their work, but apparently that seems to be too much to ask for so I guess we'll have to make do with this very good compilation.
There's no arguing with the music on this 2CD set, of course. All of it is sublime - bruised, angry, sardonic, bleakly funny and, perhaps most of all, wonderfully tuneful. In terms of pure songwriting technique there must be a great case to be made for the songwriting partnership of Cathal Coughlan and Sean O'Hagan to be considered one of greatest of all time.
Disc 1 opens with one of the band's greatest acheivements, the beautiful and extraordinarily bleak Hello Rascals, a song which contains one of my all-time favourite lyrics: 'Wake up almost dead/ watch the dawn in sick amazement'. (But then there are so many great lyrics on this record...). Yes, the production values are almost laughably dated, but at this stage there was no major record company and no money. From this opening track to the end of the much more polished CD2 Daunt Square is a sheer joy.
If we're going to be pernickety though, and I am, then you have to ask why no Teddy Dogs, Helicopter of the Holy Ghost, A Friend with a Big Mouth, Genius, the magnificent Bullwhip Road ('I hate the world/I hate my life/and this song/now run along'), Ambulance for One ('if we meet again/try not to faint in my hallway') or even the ludicrously underrated Half A Day?
No matter, this set contains some of the finest music ever made, by a band who should have been at least as big as The Smiths (surely Microdisney's only real competitors in the Great Indie Guitar Bands of the 80s category). Put simply, do yourself an enormous favour and buy this record.