Oldfield Youth Club
‘The Glue’ EP
Tiny Global Records
South west London indie commentators Oldfield Youth Club – or OYC as they’re often known – return with a three track EP of observations on life and other matters, and they’ve brought a horn section with them. Variously recalling Dexy’s, the Style Council and Pulp, amongst others, OYC know how to take a three chord tune and expand on it with a touch of flair. Of course, musical polymath Simon Rivers has a lot of practise with this sort of thing and these songs bode well for any full length release OYC might be preparing to share with us.
First track ‘The Glue’ was explained to me by Simon when I interviewed him a few months ago. It’s about alienation, the ways in which corporatism divides people through terminology and other methods :’where is the glue that will hold us together’ runs the chorus over a melancholy guitar part that’s suddenly bolstered with a blast of brass notes from the OYC horn section, which is credited to Alison Targett.
Second track ‘Splinters’ sees OYC tackling some very big concepts : ‘we’re all splinters in God’s fingers’ goes the opening, and the lyric goes on to consider the idea that God is in fact female, as well as a commentary on the various pitfalls of everyday life. ‘We’re falling into the devil’s paper cups’ is a recurring line and I suppose a lot of people have felt a bit like that at one time or another.
Lastly, ‘Kids At Summer Festivals’ takes a wry look at, well, summer festivals : ‘you’ve got to have your leaders, highly regarded organisers’ sings Simon over a backing track that recalls Paul Weller’s mid 80s excursions with his post-Jam project the Style Council. It’s a song that will resonate with anyone that ever found festival going a bit less enjoyable than the posters made it seem.
Oldfield Youth Club have a lot to offer us, and when he isn’t part of either Vic Godards band or 80s survivors The Bitter Springs, Simon Rivers finds time to regale us with thoughtful, satirical and deftly performed songs such as these. Recommended.