It was New Year’s Day, my family and a few of our close friends were on a weekend away in Deal, a small seaside town in Kent. Fresh sea air, cute record shops that were all closed, shit Wi-Fi and two rental owners on coke (and probably various other substances) looking for a party to gate crash.
We arrived around lunch time and were all starving from the long car journey - conveniently there was a pub next to the house we had rented which was on the seafront. It was packed - we sat outside. There were two men with their kids sitting near us that we noticed mainly because their youngest kid around three was shouting ‘lesbian’ for no particular reason, whilst the other two kids were bargaining us for some chips. We got chatting to the men and realised that they were the rental owners.
It was around 8, my mum had made a big dinner for us all, pasta with lots of red wine to accompany it. I went a bit overboard on the wine and ended up having to sit outside dribbling into a plant pot on the verge of being sick. I was trying to distract myself by listening to the crashing waves when from the corner of my eye I saw the same two men from earlier come in through the back gate and enter the house. I pulled myself together and followed them in to see what was going on.
One of them was busily fixing the record player and the other one was talking at a hundred miles an hour at one of my mum’s friends, offering her ‘something’ from a baggie. Turns out they were looking for some fun as it was New Year’s Day and all. I was rustling through the box of records with another of my parent’s friends and he picked this 12” out and turned to me and said, “oh you’ll like this one.”
The needle hit the vinyl, it crackled, then it started, I was hooked from the first sound to the last.
“How can anyone know me, when I don’t even know myself?”
He proceeded to tell me that the song was called ‘Giant’ which came out in 1983 by ‘The The’ an English Alternative/indie band that started in 1979.
So, there we all were dancing to this 9 and ½ minute song when one of the owners starts panicking, saying he’s lost his cat purse - they both left in a frenzy… what a fucking weird night.
Over a year and a half later the album ‘Soul mining’ by The The is one of my favourite albums ever and Giant is thus by far my favourite song on the album. To me it is literal perfection. Apparently, the song is about getting old, not recognising the person you’ve become in the mirror and fearing death, but to me the music contrast’s this message with a fast beat and its pulsing synth throughout.You could interpret the fast beat as how quickly life goes by and when the beat fades out at the end it embodies what he feared all along, death. I always wonder how I ever felt satisfied with music before I heard this song! If you haven’t heard it before go listen to it now. Really loud!!
P.S I wonder if he ever found his cat purse?
If you want to check out the album you can find it on Spotify here.
And we've made you a Curated Mix of similar artists if you enjoy it, on Spotify right here.