Friday, 28 May 2010

'You And Your Sister' - This Mortal Coil (1991)

“You say my love for you’s not real,
But you don’t know how real it feels”

So, you’re Head of the College for the Distributive Trades – part of The London Institute (that name used to take up half my CV). The building is five floors, but each is too small for an exam hall (it’s now the home of Capital Radio in Leicester Square). So where are your pupils going to sit their HNDs? Oh, here’s an idea: the crypt at St Martin’s Church. (!??!)

Yes, you can imagine the welcoming atmosphere (after you’d carefully weaved your way past the ‘colourful’ characters queuing for the soup kitchen in the building opposite). We sat in huge, dank stone vaults and strained to see our exam papers in the half-light (while outside the world was basking in the May sun). I’ve never seen so many students finish their papers early just so they could escape the place. The examiners must have seriously wondered why all our essays on retail distribution channels were tinged with such melancholy and maudlin thoughts.

This Mortal Coil were a treasured discovery of the time. Circling the nucleus of 4AD-boss Ivo-Watts Russell were collaborations from some of my favourite artists on the label, including the sublime pairing of Kim Deal and Tanya Donnelly on this track. (My grandad always likes it when I play this one.) The three This Mortal Coil albums also uncovered many new musical paths for me through their wonderful covers, including Chris Bell, Tim Buckley and Syd Barrett.

St Martin’s crypt is now a café and gift shop. But for me it’s haunted by memories of exam days. The shepherd’s pie looks good though.

Spotify linky:
This Mortal Coil – You And Your Sister

Bonus Spotify linky - the original version:

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