Page 11 of the Soft Boys scrapbook

Page 11 of The Soft Boys Scrapbook

A long, complimentary review from Ian Penman, and a monumental put down from David Hepworth, who much later wrote thoughtful, perceptive full length books like ‘A Fabulous Creation’ and ‘1971’. ‘Scabrous’ means covered in scabs, or indecent, salacious. Another review describes a ‘line’ from Penetration to Siouxsie and the Banshees- you zig zag off it to find the Buzzcocks, Magazine, Subway Sect and the Soft Boys. I feel more of a spirit of camaraderie with Chas and Dave (not mentioned in the ‘line’) appearing the night after us at Dingwalls. Our first album is announced with the title ‘Heat Me Up and Tell Me You’re Happy’. The Soft Boys are on a compilation from the Cambridge based Raw Records, with ‘Hear My Brane’- like ’Skool Dinner Blues’ using the jokey spelling from Willans’ and Searle’s Molesworth books. Alongside are the Unwanted- cheerily untogether punk- the Killjoys- Johnny Won’t Get to Heaven sold 18000- Some Chicken- morose shouting- the Users- with my friends Chris Free and the late Andrew Bor- Downliners Sect (formed in 1962!)- no mention of their 1970s recordings in their discography- Gorillas- high energy rock, with distinctive clothes and haircuts. All recorded at Spaceward Studios in Cambridge. This record being a scrapbook, there are a great many print reviews and listings. There is no mention, for example, of the two weeks we spent at Rockfield residential studios. On arrival, Jim and I discovered that someone had left a gargantuan flush resistant floater in the toilet. It was painful just to contemplate the size of it. It was agreed tho, that this was hilarious. There was also a piano tuner at work as I unloaded the gear. He complained, muttering that the more noise I made the longer he would take. It was a bit like being back at school, where you’re told that the whole class would have to stay behind because some individual had wasted time. I should have told him that if he wanted to make himself really useful, he could remove the floater. PS- the record company instantly scrapped the Rockfield album and I have never heard it. But many of the songs appear on the Can of Bees album.