Wednesday, January 25, 2017

High concept, high seas: Sailor's A Glass Of Champagne

January 1976's Number Two hit A Glass Of Champagne by Sailor sets its lyrical tone right away with its opening couplet: 'I've got the money, I've got the place / You've got the figure, you've got the face.'

Yes, we're foursquare in the 1970's here, chauvinism and all.

Easily the most bizarre band I've covered so far, Sailor come on like Roxy Music with a nautical fixation - the same synth and piano boogie that drove Virginia Plain married to a lyric about getting together over a glass of ... well, you can see where this is going... delivered by four men in a distresed approximation of nautical gear (the video is from Germany, where Sailor were a very big deal)

Two of whom are hunkered around a Heath Robinson synth-piano-organ-glockenspiel device called a Nickelodeon.

What elevates Glass Of Champagne is the fact that it's ridiculously catchy, without a redundant phrase in its three and half minutes and is delivered with a cheerily gonzo intensity by this merry crew. Bass chants of 'a little glass of champagne' and all.

Seventies songs like this are probably the reason Gang Of Four wrote half an album about commodified love three years later. But moments in pop don't need to be anything other than of their time and A Glass Of Champagne is certainly that.

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