Some records certainly make me whisper “fucking hell” under my breath whilst listening to them and The Pale Fountains “Bicycle Thieves” is one of them. Okay okay, Mick Head records make up a good number of them but let’s ignore that for now.

From a swirling Animals-esque intro, it’s one of those songs that just gets better and better as it goes on and Mick Head absolutely belts the vocals out like their life depends on it. Lyrically, …Across The Kitchen Table might be peak Pale Fountains (that opening line!) but “and when I seen you in the subway station, you looked like you hadn’t seen The Queen’s face for a while” is still up there in my books.

What a record! Fucking hell.

One of my favourite things about Paul Simpson’s work post The Care is how it teeters perpetually on the brink of cabaret. The Worst Year Of My Life especially sounds like the sort of thing you’d hear whilst passing a pub during karaoke hour and I adore it for that.

But it’s not a perfect song, that’s Bringing Home The Ashes. Ashes is still borderline cabaret but it somehow transcends that into the sublime. It’s very Liverpool indie, albeit tuxedo’d up. It’s great.