Chart Music #50: March 21st 1996 – The Movement That Wouldn’t Feel The Benefit


The latest episode of the podcast which asks the question: What was David Stubbs doing while the Rainforest was falling?

It’s our half-century. Pop-Crazed Youngsters, but we’re not making a fuss about it, bar the raising of the bat and a nod to the stands before returning to the job of whacking at a random episode of Top Of The Pops. And oh dear: this particular slice of Thursday evenings past comes at us during the even more devastating Second Wave of Britpop, with Steve Lamacq and Jo Whiley playing the roles of Peelie and Janice.

Musicwise, we’re fully into the Ric Blaxill era, so expect a morbid carousel of Proper Music played on Proper Instruments, with a smattering of past-it Eighties sorts thrown in, and all mixed together with an offensive distain for the charts. Rick Witter may or may not be wearing a Tena underneath his Martin Fry suit. Lionel Richie’s head is lowered into a Desperate Dan beard. Prince Naseem Hamed pitches up with Kaliphz to remind us that dance music was somehow still going in the mid-Nineties. Menswear bring along a string section. Oh God, it’s Madonna again. Celine Dion wafts about a circus putting in no graft whatsoever. Take That offer up the most half-arsed swan song in musical history, and – finally – Oasis enter the Chart Music arena.

Simon Price and Neil Kulkarni join Al Needham for a bit of Gay Exchange-advert-dancing upon the ashes of ’96, veering off on such tangents as going into the off-licence in Napoleonic headjoy, stripping in front of someone off Coronation Street, being a Lion Bell-End, bum-rushing the Camden KFC, being made by a Manic Street Preacher to dance to the Ramadan No.1 of 1974, the Horseshoe Of Shame, and a rate and quality of swearing that times like this demand.

Part 1: Preamble

Part 2: Shed Seven, Oasis

Part 3: Madonna, Menswear, Lionel Richie, Celine Dion

Part 4: Garbage, Kaliphz feat. Prince Naseem, Take That, TOTP2

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