Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Top 100 Songs From the 1990s (No. 88)

88. "Letter From a Lifeboat"
Artist: The Sugargliders
Year: 1992

I think "Ahprahran" is the song Melbourne lads Josh and Joel Meadows will remembered for most, but I have always enjoyed this one even more, the first of six singles they recorded for the legendary Sarah label. I dig the looped shuffling beat, Spanish riff and mellow vibe... even if the theme is pretty serious business.

The pedigree of these fellas is like something out of a dream. Before joining Matt and Clare's Bristol outfit after mailing them this song, their earliest singles appeared on Summershine, a revered label in its own right. They grew up listening to the likes of Lloyd Cole and Aztec Camera. The decision on their band name came down to wanting to appear in the record-shop bins between the Style Council and the Sundays. Later, I learned their cousin is Tali White of the Lucksmiths, one of my absolute favorite bands (more on them a little later down the list). All of this and more led me to believe I would want to hang out with these guys. In 2012, when the opportunity to touch base with Josh just as the Sugargliders' retrospective 'A Nest With A View 1990-1994' was being released, I jumped at the chance. He was very cool to take the time to answer my silly questions with thoughtful answers, which I have found is quite a rarity. Could that have swayed me to include them on this countdown? Without apologies, I say, "absolutely," but it's a lovely song, regardless.

7 comments:

The Swede said...

Don't know this at all. Has a nice shuffle to it. Surprised it hasn't been snapped up for a Balearic remix. Cool.

MisterPrime said...

LOVE the Sugargliders! I can't believe they aren't massive everywhere. That 'Nest With A View' comp. should be a compulsory purchase for everyone...

Scott said...

You can definitely hear their love of Lloyd and Roddy. Love the fact that they wanted their records to be between The Style Council and The Sundays in the racks. They don't sound to me like a typical Sarah Records band.

friend of rachel worth said...

Love this band - although Ahprahran pips it for me. Think they turned into the Steinbecks who are also great

charity chic said...

I'm sorry to say that Sugar would get in the way on my shelves

Brian said...

CC, Slappin' the knee. I took it a step further and wondered if they ever felt frustrated being so closely sandwiched between Bob Mould's band and the Sugarplastic. By the way, both of those sugars will be coming up on this list... but not for a while yet.

FORW,
You say potato, I say... oh, never mind. I guess it doesn't work if you type it. I couldn't possibly argue with you between my pick and Ahprahran. Both are so good. Sometimes I think I pick lesser known songs just so we all have something to argue about. Just glad you like them. I came across this video last night. You will enjoy this one:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9omYdRzVSpw

Scott,
Not sure where you stand with Sarah. Was trying to think if I have seen any of their bands on your blog. Musically, you're probably right about the Sugargliders, but between the ears these brothers were aligned with the label for sure... if you catch my meaning. Sarah acts have another song or two yet coming up. Hopefully that's not a warning to you.

MisterPrime,
How's my Nottingham correspondent? I should have guessed you might have been into these fellas. Yes, that compilation is so good. Matinee put it out over here, and they always do such a great job digging up these gems.

Swede,
So, you've hit the '70s. I have been following your story with much interest. I think you would really enjoy that Sugargliders comp. It's all you'll ever need.

Scott said...

Hi Brian, whenever I think of Sarah Records I always think of The Field Mice and The Orchids, who I am sure are not entirely representative of the label. Looking forward to hearing some more Sarah stuff as the list unfolds...