gullbuy music review

England's Glory


Legendary Lost Album




England's Glory CD coverEngland's Glory was the band Peter Perrett fronted in 1973, before he formed The Only Ones.

In South London Peter Perrett, inspired by his love of Dylan, played an acoustic set at a youth club. Based on the burning passion he had, his wife Zena Kakoulli decided to form a band for him. She got her brother Harry (already a great bassist) and her friend Jon Newey (on drums) to join him.

England's Glory never went anywhere, despite having recorded a self-financed acetate (this record). Harry Kakoulli went on to play bass in Squeeze. Peter may have idolized Dylan, but his lifestyle was more like Johnny Thunders. This pretty much guaranteed that all his projects would never get the top billing they may have deserved.

The songs on Legendary Lost Album are pop songs built on a pre-punk guitar oriented structure. The recordings are rough studio tracks - they are the best the band could do with their budget, and they stand as a chronicle of a band that never saw its potential.

Peter writes very odd and interesting lyrics, like his idol Dylan. Check out this couplet from The Wide Waterway

I could even be an actor
its better than reading books.
I don't ever scream at her
I like the way she cooks.

The record has early versions of City of Fun (eventually a song on the first Only Ones LP), Peter & The Pets (the B-side to the first Only Ones single Lovers of Today) and Trouble in The World (eventually a song on the third Only Ones LP Baby's Got A Gun). Trouble In The World shares little more than a title with the song Only Ones later recorded - it seems to have been completely rewritten.

This record and the recently released The First And Last comprise all known recording of the band. Predictably Blonde and Weekend appear on both these records, though the versions on The First And Last are completely different (and superior). The first four tracks on The First And Last are the best recorded songs the band ever tracked, from sessions they did for EMI. Weekend does have interesting backing vocals in a style that will sound familiar to any Squeeze fans.

Critics frequently dismiss Peter Perrett as a Lou reed clone. The Guest has music straight out of Sweet Jane, and Peter's voice IS a dead ringer for Lou on almost every track, but England's Glory are more of a guitar lovers band, as Only Ones were.

Legendary Lost Album is a record Only Ones fans will want to hear. A respected acquantance told me he thinks this record is the best work Peter Perrett ever did, but I don't agree. To me the Only Ones three albums remain pretty untouchable, with Legendary Lost Album an interesting footnote.

Faves: 1,3,5,8

---Carl, July 19, 2005