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the official distractions website

Welcome to the official Distractions website. We will be aiming to record the history of one of the greatest, but least heralded, of all Manchester beat groups.

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Sunday, October 26, 2014

Definition of lost classic

As we gear up for the order process for the long-awaited, eagerly-anticipated release of the definitive Distractions box set, here's a couple of lovely little fan reviews of what will be the centre-piece of 'Parabolically Yours'.  Thanks to Mr Worthy and Whammo and My Party Is Better Than Yours for the kind words.

The Distractions - Nobody's Perfect

Pop perfection.  Often cited as one of the GREAT lost classics, the Distractions certainly hit a winning formula with this.  Elvis Costello eat your heat out!!  Don't think it's ever surfaced on ceedee but they did re-form in 2012 and released an album that was head 'n shoulders above most.

To Hell With Good Intentions.

The Distractions - Nobody's Perfect (1980)

The Distractions are an often-overlooked band of the seventies Manchester scene, forgotten in favour of peers and occasional touring buddies such as the Buzzcocks. Perhaps the definition of a lost classic, Nodoby's Perfect is 40 minutes of sonic brilliance, taking in Buzzcocks-like full-tilt punk, new-wave, and a bit of Phil Spector sixties pop.



Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Melancholy sensuality

This lovely review of FAC 12 Time Goes By So Slow appeared earlier this year on the Pop Diggers website based in Sweden - like many other Distractions fans seem to be - not least Malcolm Carter of Penny Black. 

Time Goes By So Slow
[Factory, 1979] (Listen)

The Distractions - Time Goes By So Slow

Just like in The Shoes there is in The Distractions' music something fleeting, sensuous that is hard to describe.  A melancholy spread by the wind, a sorrow and longing sensuality.  A listening to Time Goes By So Slow and hopefully you will understand what I mean.  Singing of a real English soul singer, written by guitarist Adrian Wright - though it says otherwise on the label - and originally intended as a B-side.   Became instead a very obvious A-side and one of those rare singles where everything is correct.
You can play it a hundred times without finding a weak point, and it stands completely outside both time and trend.  Play in the years 2009 and rediscover innocence.
And for God's sake - get Nobody's Perfect today, their only and much beloved LP!  The 2000s can be very cold without it.

Time Goes By So Slow
[Factory, 1979] (Lyssna)

The Distractions - Time Goes By So Slow

Precis som hos The Shoes så finns det i Distractions musik något flyktigt, översinnligt som är svårt att beskriva. Ett vemod som sprids med vinden, en sorgens och längtans sensualism. En lyssning till Time Goes By So Slow och ni förstår förhoppningsvis vad jag menar. Sjungen av en riktig engelsk soulsångare, skriven av gitarristen Adrian Wright – fast det står något annat på etiketten – och ursprungligen tänkt som en B-sida. Blev istället en alldeles självklar A-sida och en av dom där sällsynta singlarna där allting stämmer. 

Du kan spela den hundra gånger utan att hitta en svag punkt, och den står helt utanför både tid och trend. Spela den år 2009 och återupptäck oskulden. 

Och för guds skull – skaffa redan idag Nobody’s Perfect, deras enda och mycket älskade LP! 2000-talet kan bli mycket kallt utan den.


Sunday, October 19, 2014

Better than Buzzcocks

As mentioned by former Distractions drummer, Alex Sidebottom, on Facebook last week, the box set is nearing reality thanks to the efforts of Neil Storey, former Head of Press at Island Records, and team at HiddenMasters.

In the meantime, delving into the archives of the City Fun Exhibition at the Manchester District Music Archive pulled out this double review of a Distractions gig at The Squat , supported by The Nives and The Gags.

The Distractions - in retrospect, a strange looking bunch. The sound wasn't too hot. Awful drum sound, no punch, no power. Presumably not the drummer's fault, he looked pretty active. The rhythm guitar was too far low down in the mix. The bass? Sounded OK. Lead guitar was jumbled. A very boring review. I couldn't understand the words. They have promise. Reminded me of the Jags, who supported Squeeze at the university in November. Let's just say that The Distractions were better than the Smirks when I saw them at the university, and, given a clearer sound, would (or should) get people dancing. I didn't dance, I'd have been too embarrassed... Christ, that was a boring review...

Wednesday 13th December, The Squat, featuring: Gags, Distractions, Nives.
Distractions - promising, need a clearer sound. They looked bored, can't blame them, was that Bob Geldof in the audience? No atmosphere at the gig. The Squat's too high and always empty. Most of their songs sounded better than the Buzzcocks latest (awful) single. The Small Faces song they did was (seemed) the most effective. A good / great dance band given the opportunity. 


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