can’t help feeling that one of the reasons people like this record [Tackhead: Learning toCope with Cowardice] so much is down to their nostalgia for the time it came out? Which I don’t have as a johnny come lately…

Only to a degree. Yes, I still remember the wonder with which I heard tracks like Jerusalem on John Peel when it first came out. But then Ifeel the same way about things like Black Flag. But “Learning” sounds great today. I know cos I deliberately listened to the original vinyl again while re-reading John’s post, and I expected to hear what he described. But what I heard was different, and much better than I expected. Side one still sounds great, at least. I didn’t have “Mark Stewart” to hand at the time so I deliberately didn’t do a comparison. But in absolute terms, “Cowardice” still sounds great — and I suspect, from memory, that it sounds better than much late period Stewart. But Icould be wrong.

Oh yes, and Danny writes to inform me that “Sounds of The Universe” (the Soul Jazz shop) now have a massive stock of old Tackhead twelves and the like, and demands I leave immediately for an urgent appointment with a barber in Hoxton. Bah!

Well, it was bound to happen — the canonisation of On-U has been at an advanced state for some years (and rightly so) so a commercial product of that is not surprising. Though I wonder if their large stock is to do with not being able to shoft them… Still, John’s hairdresser is a mere two or three miles north of Hoxton, so who knows what barnet-related developments may occur…

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