#530 ‘Ready or Not’ by the Lightning Seeds (11 July)

Album: Dizzy Heights, 1996

Justification: There aren’t many bands that I look back at my love for with complete confusion. I mean, my fondness for some bands will ebb and flow fairly dramatically (my 14 year old self and I would have very different opinions on the Cure, for example) but generally speaking I accumulate rather than replace.

However: there was a time I adored the Lightning Seeds, and for the life of me I can’t work out why.


Seriously, why did I love this album? WHY?

It’s not that they were bad – well, I say “they”, but it was basically producer-turned-muso Ian Broudie – but I can remember a time when I was absolutely thrashing the Dizzy Heights album and this song in particular, and now I’m utterly baffled at the very idea of having a strong feeling about such a milquetoast artist, much less such an astonishingly patchy album (there was a time in my life when I listened to a song called ‘Sugar Coated Iceberg’ and didn’t want to deck everyone involved? What the hell was wrong with me?). I’m quietly confident that I gave this a rave review in dB Magazine at the time too, for which I apologise unreservedly. Fortunately it would exist only in yellowed print these days, since the internet was but a weird and soon-to-vanish fad in the eyes of our editors in 1996.

Then again, this song was also one my ex-wife and I used to consider special thanks to that weird, coupley way in which certain songs take on resonances that they don’t objectively deserve. That’s probably why I can slip this onto the list with a degree of equanimity these days.

Or it might be that, unlike 1996, I can listen to it and go “oh, it’s obviously about cocaine”. I mean, look at the lyrics: “I can’t stay home with all this time to kill, oh god I can’t sit still… I’ve got a million thoughts and when I’ve thought them all, I’ll think a million more… you make me feel alright, it’s like the tippermost-toppermost high”. Certainly sounds like the sort of idiotic stuff that goes through my head on the all-too-frustratingly-rare occasion that I’ve had a couple of lines.

Anyway, the chorus does hit me in the feels a little bit – but it’s more in a “ah, the stuff you’re going to learn, my friend” sort of a way than in a nostalgic one.

So yes: In 1996 I was pretty convinced I had everything figured out, was listening to the Lightning Seeds and thinking they were good. So at least I was consistently wrong, I guess.

SONG YOU SHOULD HAVE REDISCOVERED THIS TIME IN 2011: It’s not quite the Breeders, though it probably should have been: it’s the Amps and the rockin’ ‘Tipp City’.

SONG YOU SHOULD HAVE REDISCOVERED THIS TIME IN 2012: Admit it: you know you love The Waitresses’ worldwide hit ‘I Know What Boys Like’.


525. The Cure: A Night Like This (1 Mar)

526. The Pogues: If I Should Fall from Grace with God (15 Mar)

527. Hefner: The Day that Thatcher Dies (9 Apr)

528. Black: Wonderful Life (16 Apr)

529. Bruce Springbean and the S-Street Band: Born to Add (17 May)


2 thoughts on “#530 ‘Ready or Not’ by the Lightning Seeds (11 July)

  1. Pingback: #531 ‘Give Him a Great Big Kiss’ by the Shangri-Las (23 Aug) | Andrew P Street is the Internet

  2. Pingback: #533 ‘Sweet Jane’ by the Cowboy Junkies (1 Nov) | Andrew P Street is the Internet

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