I seem to have overlooked a cardinal rule of fanzine rhetoric in this excerpt from Pot Plant Pantry: never apologise, never explain. Nevertheless this is the intensity of youth in full flow. God, how he and I would eye each other with suspicion if time travel ever allowed us to meet.
But we would agree at least on one thing – those Jasmine Minks demos, which preceded the Another age album, remain exceptionally beautiful. Done with a drum machine and exuding the fragility of a song writer – Jim Shepherd – trying and succeeding to find his way again after the departure of partner in crime Adam Sanderson, the songs struck a perfect balance between vulnerability and confidence. Unfortunately very little of this is audible in transference from quiet cassette recording to mp3 format, so here instead are a couple of polished-up (or roughed-up) LP versions. Neither ‘Still waiting’ nor ‘Nothing can stop me’ appeared on the 2004 Rev-ola compilation The revenge of the Jasmine Minks; both feature Jim’s singing at its best.
‘I quite honestly don’t care for all these sixties obsessions that have manifest themselves recently, when even more powerful attitudes are being expressed here and now… There is no ‘golden age of pop’, there are just pop portents who come and go.’ I suspect that the irony of placing a picture of Dusty Springfield alongside this opinion was lost on me at the time, but perhaps I was just being bloody-minded or provocative. The phrase ‘pop portents’ still has a kind of ring to it, even if it makes the portentous nature of my writing at the time all too transparently evident.