If you were one of those people who used to write and ask why bands on Sarah didn’t do more gigs, here’s a reminder from the (Scottish) Sun of what happened when The Orchids were due to drive 400-odd miles to London to promote Striving For The Lazy Perfection at the Garage in Highbury in the vague hope that someone from NME or Melody Maker might turn up and be drily dismissive. (The handwritten comment is by the band, by the way!)
But, on a more positive note, here’s the (Glasgow) Evening Times
bringing news of what happened two weeks later, and also explaining why Striving For The Lazing Perfection
is called what it is. Though I’m not entirely sure they’re right.
Footnote: we obviously didn’t find out about the Orchids’ crash till just before soundcheck, which didn’t give a lot of time to sort out adding anyone else to the bill. But then Harvey suggested he and Bobby did some Field Mice songs, given they were there anyway (Blueboy and Northern Picture Library had been due to support). So they did, including, as Clare says in the There And Back Again Lane booklet, three songs they never played live when the Field Mice were still going: Willow, An Earlier Autumn and A Wrong Turn and Raindrops, the last of those with Harvey on harmonica, which he never played on the record.
A typically whimsical French tour; we’d been assured that the gig at the Cafe de le Plage was a Paris showcase, despite no one in Paris having heard of the venue… not surprising, in retrospect, as it was in Maurepas, a small town 20 miles west with no station (it’s twinned with Waterlooville; say no more). The Orchids were supposed to headline, but singer James had broken his foot playing football – this only months after the London launch of Striving For The Lazy Perfection had had to be cancelled after their van fell off the M6 near Carlisle. But Harvey stepped in, and we seem to have given away free cassette copies of Epicurean, which sounds ridiculously generous. If you’ve always wondered why Blueboy’s Toulouse was called “Toulouse”, by the way, it’s because it was written outside Le Bikini in Toulouse.
Mitcham Common, 1994
l-r: Anne Mari Davies, Mark Dobson, Bobby Wratten