ARTIST: The Wedding Present
TITLE: George Best
YEAR RELEASED: 1987
CHART ACTION: #47 UK
SINGLES: My Favourite Dress, Anyone Can Make a Mistake
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Not here in the US, unless you were on holiday in the UK at that time.
LINEUP: Dave Gedge, Peter Solowka, Keith Gregory, Shaun Charman
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: A band from Leeds self-releases their debut album after several self-released singles, and it was received quite well.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: They were lumped into the C86 scene (power pop with fast, jangling guitars) and though over time it became a pejorative of sorts, the Wedding Present were a good band that used their sound to great effect.
The guitars are strummed fast, but they didn’t sacrifice melody. Gedge, the leader and songwriter, sings in a definite accent, so the US shyed away a bit. The songs are all slices and stories regarding relationships.
The band wasn’t happy with the production, and re-did the mix, though it sounds fine by me now. (That kerfuffle led to the sacking of the drummer Charman). It’s a pretty good slice of the indie C86 scene at the time. After this record, they’d move to a major label.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: The album is named for the Northern Irish footballer George Best, who gave permission.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yes, with the singles released by them after the album. “Nobody’s Twisting Your Arm” (#46) and “Why Are You Being So Reasonable Now?” (#42) hit the regular UK charts.
GRADE: B+: A little bit same-y, and Gedge’s voice can get a little tiring after a while (probably because of the same-y-ness). Overall, pretty good indie UK pop.