Hanging back in the 1980s for a bit, here…
I’ve mentioned before that a school friend of mine was in a local avant-garde/art-rock/new wave band, A New Man Celebration, in the early ’80s. I remember one of his favourite bands at the time was Echo & the Bunnymen, and I’m sure he put one of their songs on that elusive, arty mixtape I’ve been looking for, for a while. (I mention the friend’s band in my post on Philip Glass’s “The Poet Acts” and also talk of receiving an email through the Contact page on my website from the daughter of the NMC lead singer in my post on “Can’t Let Go.” The mixtape itself gets a mention in my post on “Long in the Tooth.”)
But, I digress, already…. back to today’s band.
Ian McCulloch is the instantly recognizable voice and frontperson of Echo & the Bunnymen, formed in Liverpool, England in 1978, just as the new wave movement was kicking off. Fast forward to the present, I’ve heard his vocal in one of their recent releases, “Bring on the Dancing Horses” from The Stars, The Oceans & The Moon (2018) numerous times on KEXP Seattle’s The Morning Show with John Richards. McCulloch’s voice has a unique, almost kind of haunting quality to it.
“Lips Like Sugar” is a terrific, upbeat song from the band’s eponymous 1987 album. The official video opens with a shot of the famous Royal Liver Building on St. George’s Pier Head in Liverpool. The top of the building is home to two statues of liver birds, a mythical creature and a symbol of the city and local football club. (It’s also the image on a tattoo one of our lads has to recognize his family history.)
One of the birds faces out to the River Mersey and Liverpool Bay, and the other faces into the city. One of my cousins there says one is watching over the sailors, and the other is checking to see if the pubs are open.
The video also features some campy, B-movie type footage and is pretty entertaining. It was a serendipitous discovery after an Internet rabbit hole took me there.
Wherever the day takes you, I hope it’s a great one. Happy Friday!
Now you know a little about why this is my Song of the Day for Today. Thanks for joining me here, and please enjoy.
Here’s the official music video. It’s on an unofficial but automatically-credited-to-the-artist version on YouTube: