NOW that’s the kinda Christmas present every proper indiekid needs.
Damaged Goods have announced a 2xLP and CD reissue of their classic round-up of Talulah Gosh’s entire recorded output, Was It Just A Dream? – and as if that wasn’t enough to make December already a far more welcoming prospect, they’ve also, in the absolute and inarguable kindness of their hearts, decided to put together a compilation of Heavenly’s singles – both hitting the tweepop section of your local record store on December 11th.
In case you need an introduction to the world of Amelia Fletcher and two very fine bands: Oxford’s Talulah Gosh were a leading light of the twee pop movement, who took their name from the headline of an NME interview with Altered Images’ Clare Grogan.
They supposedly formed when Amelia Fletcher and Elizabeth Price, both wearing Pastels badges, met at a club in Oxford in 1986. They called it a day in late 1988 with Amelia, Matthew and Peter reappearing soon after as Heavenly.
They never released an album during their short tenure, but they did release a string of absolutely storming singles, such as “Talulah Gosh”, “Beatnik Boy”, and “Steaming Train”, all of which are collated on Was It Just A Dream? – along with B-sides, the 2011 demos EP and radio sessions. Yep, it’s everything.
They forged a guitar pop that blended sweetly twee and romantic with absolute moshpit guitar thrash, as anyone lucky enough to see them will testify.
And also out the same day, in a brilliant cutesy pop one-two to your heart, is the Heavenly singles compilation A Bout De Heavenly.
When Talulah Gosh arose from the ashes as Heavenly, they had signed to the cult and ultra-geek-cool Sarah Records. They debuted with the 7″s “I Fell in Love Last Night” and “Our Love Is Heavenly” – being Sarah 7″s, both would set you back a pretty penny in their own right. Debut album Heavenly vs. Satan followed in 1991.
By the time of second album Le Jardin de Heavenly, Cathy Rogers has joined on keyboards and back-up vocals, fleshing out their sound; two non-album 7″s, “P.U.N.K. Girl” and “Atta Girl'” brought a darker, punkier development before the lush arrangements of ’94’s The Decline and Fall of Heavenly.
The group’s last album was Operation Heavenly, in 1996, containing such fine singles as “Space Manatee” and “Trophy Girlfriend”. The tragic loss of Amelia’s brother Matthew, drummer right through the two bands, saw the band announce an end to Heavenly proceedings.
We’ve also embedded the video loveliness for “Our Love Is Heavenly” below too, should you need swaying (you really shouldn’t).
A Bout De Heavenly features the singles cited above, and other greats such as “So?”, “Space Manatee”, and “Escort Crash On Marsden Street”. Proper guitar pop ahoy!
To keep abreast of announcements of pre-ordering Talulah Gosh’s Was It Just A Dream?, follow Damaged Goods on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram; Heavenly’s A Bout De Heavenly is up for pre-order now from Damaged Goods on blue vinyl, here – there’ll be a pink vinyl version in the shops.
Alternatively, write a nice letter to Santa. Mine’s winging its way to Lapland already.