The first day I walked into college a soon to be friend told me that he had me sussed immediately. Dressed in a black shirt with white polka dots, black jeans and Doctor Marten boots I probably couldn’t have shouted ‘indie’ any harder if I’d tried. Yet despite a rapidly growing love of angry guitars, feedback and non-singing vocalists my inside was gripped by the second summer of love – free parties, raves and the ecstasy revolution were transforming music and reshaping youth culture. This is where our musical tastes crossed paths, got intertwined and fed off each other like hungry parasites. He introduced me to A Guy Called Gerald, D Mob and Phuture. I introduced him to The Primitives, Jesus and the Mary Chain and The Pixies. What we shared was a passion for music.
He put on raves, filled with dry ice and whistling loons. I went to one and lost everybody I knew in the fog of the smoke machines, dancing on my own in a detached happy world for what seemed like hours. Even although this was the e-generation, I never bothered with the drug myself. I didn’t need to. The music on its own set me free.
At college lunchtimes we always went to the local record store. I remember one time in particular we both bought the same album – my influence over him – Doolittle by The Pixies. The next time we met we could both only talk about one track. Debaser. “Got me a movie I want you to know, slicing up eyeballs I want you to know,” Frank Black screamed like an aggressive banshee over searing guitars and pummelling dirty bass; it was impossible not to be moved in some way. It was and still is an exceptional song and one we both agreed on.