Monday 15 February 2010

Losing Haringey

"In those days, there was a kind of fever that pushed me out of the front door, into the pale, exhaust-fumed park by Broadwater Farm or the grubby road that eventually leads to Enfield: turkish supermarket after chicken restaurant after spare car part shop. Everything in my life felt like it was coming to a mysterious close: I could hardly walk to the end of a street without feeling there was no way to go except back. The dates I’d had that summer had come to nothing, my job was a dead end and the rent cheque was killing me a little more each month ..." There are many things I love about The Clientele's Losing Haringey. The use of colons in the printed lyrics. The use of the original Haringey spelling. The fact that it's one of many highlights on the glorious Strange Geometry set, one of the greatest work of neo-pop classicism, which proves you've either got it honey or you ain't. On this track Alasdair MacLean wanders through north London, and reminisces about 1982. I have a particular passion for spoken word numbers, monologues and conversations. Among the finest examples of this form is Dexys' Reminisce Pts 1&2. Part 1, of course, has Kevin Rowland also reminiscing about 1982 and walking by the Thames and recalling searching for the spirit of Brendan Behan, ending up by declaring Ken Livingstone a folk hero. If I remember rightly we would have heard Pt 2 first where Kevin recalls the summer of 1969, being young and in love in London, and uses that great line about how you remember summers through certain songs. While Pt 1 appeared as a b-side slightly later, Reminisce Pt 2 appeared on the original pressing of the remarkable Don't Stand Me Down. As did this ...


  1. I turned off the Temptations to play this. It felt like a thunderbolt.

    Grazie molto,

    Ted Loaf.

  2. Ah I think the italians have a word for that.