If you’ve been looking forward to this A-Z getting to the eighteenth letter of the alphabet then here we ‘R’.
But where exactly ‘R’ we?
At the letter ‘R’ of course.
I’d have thought that was abundantly clear from the way I just cleverly substituted the letter ‘R’ for the word ‘are’ above.
And then even more cleverly, I explained what was an obvious and poor joke, in order to increase the number of words in this preamble.
Anyway, on to the music…
R is for Return To The Last Chance Saloon
In 1996 The Bluetones exploded onto the scene with an album that stormed to the top of the charts and marked them out as heirs apparent to the Britpop crown.
That album was called ‘Expecting to Fly’, and I loved it.
What I loved slightly less was this, their follow-up album, ‘Return to the Last Chance Saloon’.
I wasn’t alone in not fully embracing the Bluetones sophomore effort, because, while it did OK, it really marked the beginning of the end of The Bluetones brief time at the top table of British music.
But, while it didn’t enjoy the commercial success of its predecessor, it’s not at all a bad album. It doesn’t have as many standout tracks as ‘Expecting to Fly’, and it certainly doesn’t have anything as radio-friendly as their breakout hit ‘Slight Return’ from that first album, but it’s arguably a more coherent work as a whole.
With thirteen songs, it’s probably a little longer than it needs to be, but there are some good songs on ‘Return to the Last Chance Saloon’ and with the benefit of hindsight, The Bluetones might just have been victims of the overall demise of Britpop.
The stand out track from this album is called ‘If’.