I would love to claim that I was a fan of the Cocteau Twins right from the start of their career but the truth is I didn’t start listening to them until 1990 when I was studying for my GCSEs. One of the few decent music shows on at the time was The Chart Show on ITV; a show which dispensed with presenters and just concentrated on showing promos of acts from both the UK Network Chart as well as specialist charts for Dance, Metal and Indie. The indie chart was the main attraction for me, even though only a couple of acts in the top 10 each week had actually managed to make a video. As a consequence, ‘Birthday’, the indie staple by The Sugarcubes was played just about every other week. Thankfully Cocteau Twins also got featured occasionally and ‘Iceblink Luck’ was my first introduction to what would become one of my all-time favourite bands.
The Cocteau Twins struck me because they sounded nothing like I’d ever heard before. They had a powerful and mysterious image, a wonderful singer, imaginative guitar effects, an immense production and a strong grasp of melody. A lot of music fans get hung up on lyrics but with Cocteau Twins it didn’t matter, Liz Fraser could sing any old nonsense and it still sounded wonderful. The album that ‘Iceblink Luck’ came from, ‘Heaven Or Las Vegas’, remains one of my all-time favourite albums as does its predecessor 1988′s ‘Blue Bell Knoll’. On these records the Scottish trio found pop’s holy grail, it was like a dream where you would wish for a perfect key change and then the band would achieve – and occasionally better – it. Together with Prefab Sprout, New Order and Talk Talk, they provided the “anthems” that would characterise my late teen years.
Cocteau Twins Official Site
Annie Barker, This Mortal Coil, The Delays, The Plague Monkeys