Friday, 18 May 2018
Oliver! appendices: Superconductor - The Most Popular Man in the World (10 November 1991)
In looking at the title of this track while doing a trawl of appendices for the Oliver! selections, all I could remember was the rather gross cover photo for Superconductor’s debut single. It had been some three years since I heard the 10/11/91 show and it had been my Festive Fifty winner from the 1991 shows that I had heard which I most readily associated with that edition of Kat’s Karavan. It was only when doing a little research on Superconductor, ahead of writing this that I rediscovered exactly what piqued Peel’s interest in them. Basically, if you wanted sonic rock excess - no, sonic rock gluttony - in the early 90s, then Vancouver, Canada was the place to go. Superconductor boasted a line up containing 6 guitarists and 2 bassists. Clearly A.C. Newman and friends decided that an indie version of Paul McCartney’s Rockestra was a potential going concern.
The Most Popular Man in the World is essentially two styles parading for audience attention. The first half is hard rock lamentation about the title character’s drinking exploits, but at 1:40 the tone changes to something more akin to garage rock. It’s these shifts in tone, alongside the sheer weight and brio of the sound that guarantee its inclusion, some three years after I was initially left wishing for it.
Video courtesy of Irresponsableful.