Sunday, 15 April 2018

Oliver!: Revolver - Venice (10 April 1992)

The Oliver! selections started with a song about clandestine infidelities, so it’s fitting that the final track from that show should cover similar ground.  And how nice to hear Revolver on such confident form here, in contrast to the anguish I went through over their performance on their Peel Session a while ago.

Everything about the opening of this track is perfect.  The minute long overture reflecting the journey to get to Venice, a city for lovers, and the opening verse conveys exactly what had brought Matt Flint all the way there:
Fall into your arms I could die in there.
The wonder of a smile just leaves me bare.
Think of how we’d be if we had more time.
I can keep a secret if you keep mine.
(All lyrics copyright to their authors).

Having established the sense of desire that has brought the lovers together, the track then reflects on the underlying unspoken cost of the affair, both to the lovers themselves who lack stability in what they do - “Waste away my hours in nowhere sure” - and the effect that discovery may have on them and those around them - “This mood I’m in could ruin for evermore” - a line which serves up the possibility that Flint is the bit on the side in this relationship and growing frustrated, or that he’s ready to blow cover and make things public in order to move things along.
As their Peel Session track, Wave, showed; Revolver were very adept at using their instrumental breaks to paint sound pictures and the guitar break here conveys the passion, intoxication and rage of people locked into an affair - clawing both at each other and at the glass ceiling and walls around them.  It’s a shame that the final verse is a reprise of the second.  It would have been great to see whether Flint laid down an ultimatum, took his lover away with him, or walked away from it altogether.

Video courtesy of poorsofreign.


  1. This is one of those bands where you've forgotten about them but immediately remember when you see their name again. Their music is still forgettable though.

    If you don't mind me go on a bit of a meander here, taking it slightly off topic but still on the 90' - I've always said that this (apart from a couple of exceptions) was a shit pointless decade for music. This shoegaze, the grunge music gave rise or an excuse for identikit acts. It did make it difficult to discern between bands. The plethora of guitar bands in this era probably did sew the seeds of guitar music dying out a decade later.

    A reason I've gone on this mini-rant is because I attended an event at the weekend. The theme was the 1990's. I decided that on the drive to the venue, to dig out some old 90's CD compilations and play them in the car. The music at the show was more from that period obviously and after the journey back with another CD, I do not want to hear any more music from that era ever again !

    (I've posted this under my other account because this is a personal opinion not associated with the KIP project. Please feel free to delete this long dull post if you want David !)

  2. Hi Webbie. It’s interesting to read your comments, I remember David Quantick in discussing the John Peel soundtracked novel he was trying to crowdfund recently saying that 90s Peel shows were a slog to listen to sometimes because he felt that the guitar music of the time as inferior. I’ve found as I’ve gone along that I’ve been more drawn to the dance music Peel was playing than the guitar stuff, though some of the bands still have the capacity to surprise. This could be because I’m discovering a number of them for the first time.

    Feel free to vent anytime ��