#tbt Happy Mondays / Bummed (1988)

By Adam Parrilli
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1988’s Bummed was and still is a sophomore success. Arriving on the heels of the sub par Squirrel and G-Man Twenty Four Hour Party People…, Bummed truly dropped a dime on what might be in store for us from both the Mondays and the Manchester scene.

Lead vocalist Shaun Ryder’s signature buffoonish rasp is the perfect counterpoint to the swirling guitars chewing up the background. It all allows Ryder to drop his cerebral lyrical wisdom like, ‘Henny Penny, Cocky Locky, Goosey Loosey, Turkey Lurkey, Ducky Lucky, Chicken Lickin.’ It seems they are all on the move when the sun is falling in, on the song “Moving In With.”

Lazyitis” makes no bones about lifting elements from The Beatles “Ticket To Ride”and Sly & The Family Stone’s “Family Affair,” yet still, The Mondays were paving their own path, lest you forget they had Bez, a dancer/percussionist/wild card in their lineup.

The ‘banger’ (no not that kind) on Bummed is “Wrote For Luck.” It is the centerpiece of the record, being both the lengthiest tune, but also, closest to the truly anthem-level jams that would follow on Pills ‘n’ Thrills and Bellyaches.This marriage of elements in the Mondays’ music (guitars and dancier beats) would transform Manchester into Madchester and make way for other Mancunian luminaries like The Stone Roses.

“Wrote For Luck”(WFL) was used most recently by Kurt Vile as the stage entrance song for he and The Violators on his tour behind Wakin’ On A Pretty Daze.

Whatever you do, don’t open that CD sleeve! The lyrics are not in there…You were warned.

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