Song of the day – 162: Dolly Mixture
There’s a new Dolly Mixture box set out.
Hand on heart, I’m not sure you’ll be purchasing it. It’s 20 quid, which doesn’t seem so bad for three CDs, 56 songs, a 32-page booklet and sweet Mod packaging, and it includes the Demonstration Tapes album and all the singles and B-sides of course, and it’s all very twee, Eighties-style (we’re talking Helen And The Horns, The Photos, Talulah Gosh and The Damned), and of course there are plenty of photos of stripy tights and polka dots and skinhead girls… but I can’t help thinking that this is a secret crush available to a few only, probably those who were around at the time (1978-1984), probably a few starstruck boys and inspired girls who’d never seen girls act so unafraid to be themselves and parade their love for Sixties femme pop among all the rough and tumble of punk and jagged edges of post-punk and turbulent blasts of jazz and dub reggae and what-have-you at the turn of the Eighties. This wasn’t a trendy sound. Far from it. It’s not the out-and-out minimal pop which so endears Marine Girls and Beat Happening to the new generation 25 years on. It’s good-time, good-tempered girl-pop, not over-produced and with no flash ideas with what to do to the instrumentation, but a handful of cheeky harmonies that more than make up for it.
Here, have a listen.
Jeez, look at those skinhead girls! Dolly Mixture look all of about 13.
If they’d been called The Mo-Dettes, everyone would be loving them and forming tribute bands even today – but I guess The Mo-Dettes understood the importance of fashion.
So, whatever. If you’re Bob Stanley or Jon Slade or Everett True or perhaps an old old school John Peel listener or someone who was lucky enough to catch Dolly Mixture at one of those early concerts supporting Orange Juice, then this news is exciting indeed. But you? You’ve got fucking plenty going on already.
Here’s that Dolly Mixture link again. Go and listen to ‘Remember This’, as well. That was the single I loved.