31 thoughts on “Spillyear 1994

  1. I think these were all 1994:

    Edwyn Collins – A Girl Like You
    Beck – Loser
    Portishead – Glory Box

    I was 36 and moved from my Clapham flat to Morden
    .My sister and her husband and small daughter lived in the flat above mine and my nephew was born in October in their living room as I tried to distract my niece with a Bagpuss video.

  2. 1994 – Britpop is the first thing that springs to mind here. It was the year that Blur released Parklife. The second thing is that it was the year that Kurt Cobain killed himself. Oasis gave us Definitely Maybe and that started the whole Britpop War thing in the media.

    It was also the year that Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain came out, but unfortunately I didn’t know Pavement‘s music at all then.

    I do know that the first album I bought in 1994 was The Division Bell by Pink Floyd. I never realised then that it would be their last proper album, though.

    I also bought Lifeforms by Future Sounds Of London which really blew me away at the time. So inventive, so new and oh so prog to, really. A fantastic record.

    What else did I buy? Second Coming, the long-awaited second album from The Stone Roses, Portishead‘s Dummy, Grace by Jeff Buckley (I loved it to bits back then and still like it now), Massive Attack‘s Protection, Dog Man Star by Suede and Page and Plant‘s No Quarter.

    I was also given From The Cradle by Eric Clapton as a birthday present.

    So, three tunes. Hmmm.

    Let’s start with;

    Jeff Buckley – Grace
    The Stone Roses – Driving South
    Portishead – Glory Box

  3. A very good year indeed. Will trim this down later, but Hole definitely makes the cut.

    Mark Lanegan – Shooting Gallery
    Green Day – Longview
    Pavement – Cut Your Hair
    Sound garden – Spoonman
    Hole – Miss World
    Nirvana – Where Did you Sleep Last Night

  4. A great year.

    These days, although I’m still constantly discovering new-to-me music, I don’t have much of a grasp on what new releases I’m supposed to be listening to. Aged 16, I would read literally every review in Select or Vox (whichever had the better free cassette that month), probably more than once, and had an opinion on everything. Even if I hadn’t actually heard it.

    1994 was probably the creative peak of Britpop, although it didn’t become ubiquitous until the following year. Blur realeased Parklife, Suede Dog Man Star and Pulp His’N’Hers. Oasis released Definitely Maybe (I was about them, but excited about Echobelly). Plus The Auteurs’ Now I’m A Cowboy and first singles from Elastica and Supergrass. (Not to mention Animals That Swim’s first album, but I didn’t buy this until the following year because it wasn’t on cassette: it was the record that made me buy a CD player).

    Then there was Britpop’s near anagram, Triphop: Portishead’s Dummy, Massive Attack’s Protection and Tricky’s first singles. Also, possibly my favourite St Etienne album, Tiger Bay. Fortuitously, this was also the year that I first started listening to music while smoking dope.

    So it’s almost impossible to narrow it down to 3 – and in contradiction to everything I’ve written above, 2 of them are from America:

    1. Kristin Hersh – Hips and Makers
    I was bewitched by this the moment I heard it. The solo voice coming in with no introduction, the ringing acoustic guiter, the cello… then ohmygodit’s Michael Stipe. I got the album as a 16th birthday present (remember how wonderful it was getting albums as presents? instead of just having them available to stream instantly.)

    2. Jeff Buckley – So Real
    Not actually my favourite track off the album, but I very clearly remember discovering what getting stoned was like while listening to this song – I was in a beanbag in my brother’s bedroom, and I swear it started floating.

    3. Portishead – Numb
    This was on a Vox tape. It sounded like nothing I’d ever heard before. I got the album as a Christmas present, and the experience of listening to it for the first time that night (by the light of a log fire and the Christmas tree lights; hash involved) was incredibly intense.

  5. ok it will have to be something from REM’s Monster, and from Oasis Definitely Maybe …so

    What’s The Frequency, Kenneth – REM
    Supersonic – Oasis

    and something else…

  6. Something from Nick Cave’s Let Love in…possibly Nobody’s Baby Now but I think –

    Red Right Hand – Nick Cave

    Donds for Portishead noms

    I’m trying hard to remember what happened in 1994 – nothing especially memorable, just life going on as usual

  7. Fatima Mansions – Brunceling’s Song

    Schwartzeneggar – Slice Of Life

    The Dickies – Roadkill

    Tricky because it was a great year for me, and that was nothing to do with Britpop obviously. I warily ventured to the Fuck Reading all dayer at Brixton Academy and the rest is history. I was already buying stiff by 80s punk bands, this was the year I came across a lot of new (or at least new to me and still active) punk bands and started buying new records regularly for the first time in years. Very little of which is reflected here. Fatima Mansions are something entirely different obviously and I didn’t get into The Dickies until a few years later. Schwartzeneggar was a big favourite at the time though.

  8. One thing I remember about the all dayer : it was previously a punk all dayer, this year they had billed it as “punkabilly” all dayer, so The Meteors were on the bill along with Exploited, GBH etc. The night before a mini gang of three psychobillys nearly started on a mate of mine in a pub in Leicester after completely misunderstanding something he said. They seemed as if they were quite wound up to start with as if they were looking for a fight with anyone. This didn’t exactly reassure me about going to Brixton Academy on my own. The next day I got off at Brixton Tube station and immediately bumped into the same psychobillies from Leicester the night before. They didn’t appear to register that they’d seen me before , but it wasn’t the best start to my big adventure.

  9. Soundgarden – Black Hole Sun – One of the most incredibly melodic songs ever. Cornell established himself here as no mere Zep wannabe, but one of the greatest rock vocalists around.

    Magnapop – Slowly Slowly – Atlanta group that was like this close to making the big time.

    Mazzy Star – Fade Into You – Just a perfectly moody and atmospheric pop song.

  10. Pavement – Heaven Is A Truck
    Bee Thousand – The Goldheart Mountaintop Queen Directory
    Richard Thompson – Beeswing
    Ali Farka Toure With Ry Cooder – Lasidian
    (I’m owed at least one from last week…)

  11. Oh man, what a year! Donds to literally everything already mentioned!

    I was doing my A-levels, had very little cares in the world, was going to gigs, buying music and band t-shirts, taking acid and cheap speed and all was right with the world!

    Grunge had seeped into the invented-by-NME-but-actually-quite-good genre of the New Wave of the New Wave and all of those amazing and ambitious Britpop statements mentioned above had been unleashed on an optimistic Britain gearing up to shake off the shackles of 15 years of Tory government.

    Just to fly the flag for the maligned NWONW bands:

    S*M*A*S*H – (I Want To) Kill Somebody

    These Animal Men – You’re Not My Babylon

    Compulsion – Mall Monarchy

  12. Chris has bagged Beeswing so I’ll have King Of Bohemia from RT’s Mirror Blue; When First I Came To Caledonia from Waterson:Carthy; and from the department of I’d-have-loved-it-if-I’d-known-it-at-the-time, Crawling Back To You by TP from his second solo album Wildflowers. (Soon to be reissued as a double CD with all the songs there wasn’t room for at the time, hooray.)

    In 1994 I was living in Stony Stratford and having a wonderful time! Not quite as good as now of course, because I had to go to work. But then again – Stony Stratford…

  13. Struggling to think of anything. I was 35, life was bumbling along … forget what did. Anyway:

    Seal – Kiss from a Rose
    Lisa Loeb – Stay (I Missed You) – I actually picked this up on a compilation CD, but it’s good
    Paul Weller – Wild Wood

  14. ping pong – stereolab
    say it ain’t so – weezer
    range life – pavement

    it’s a kid’s world – disco inferno
    gold soundz – pavement
    do you love me – nick cave
    sabotage – beastie boys
    are we here? – orbital
    american dreaming/cantara – dead can dance
    cigarettes & alcohol – oasis

    I wasn’t really into Britpop, though I liked the first oasis album.

  15. We were living through the embargo in Pristina, betting paid in Monopoly money, smoked cheese, or, once, a haunch of beef – the butcher’s van drove up outside of the Faculty and we were invited to choose our haunch. We got it home in the back of a friend’s 2CV and plonked it down on the dining table. After inexpertly stripping the meat form the bone and packaging it up,
    we stuck it in our freezer. Next morning, we discovered the freezer was broken. For a small fee, we were able to use a friend’s freezer, which was empty because she was a vegetarian and had immediately bartered away her haunch of beef for flour and sugar. Ah, such sweet memories.

    Anyway, not much available to buy, but Nick Cave was very popular on pirated cassette. So, first choice will be Nick Cave and ‘Do You Love Me?’.

    We did have MTV on the telly, and I was really impressed by Salt n Pepa and ‘What A Man’.

    And finally, Neneh Cherry and Yousuf N’Dour with ‘7 Seconds’.

    1994 spawned two hits that immediately got me changing the channel – Celine Dion’s ‘The Power of Love’ and the truly awful ‘Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm’ by Crash Test Dummies. Hope I haven’t offended anyone here.

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