Sunday, June 10, 2012

Classic Album Sundays

I had never heard of 'Classic Album Sundays' until last month when sat in Rough Trade East sipping a coffee Pip noticed a poster for Joy Division's Unknown Pleasures, which was to be played that Sunday (she'd known about this concept for a while).  Unfortunately I had to work that Sunday so we could not attend, I did however sign up to the Facebook page in the hope of being the first to know of the next one.

And so one morning amongst the anecdotes, photos of misbehavior and declarations that usually adorn my newsfeed, came a notice that the next event would be The Beatles' Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, yus!

It was the 45th anniversary of its release and we travelled to Angel in East London to a small pub that was filled with children... There was a Jubilee party in the park across the road that day and I guess it's ok in England to bring your face painted sugar-high kids to the boozer. The area of Angel and Islington is unlike the rest of London (in a good way) and we are hoping that perhaps the rest of the UK will produce similarities.

So we decided to take advantage of the two-for-one pizzas at the pub, which was located downstairs of where the album would be played. I don't believe the staff have ever had that many people in the pub before as it took an age to get served. It was made more irritating by the parents that let their kids run loose in the pub. As my pint of Guinness was poured I was being attacked in the back by a child with a light-saber. No apology from the parents when I turned around though, just a kid with a smile that said "I'm hitting you and you can't do anything about it".

So after the waitresses couldn't find our table and kept our pizzas in the fridge until we asked for them, we ascended the stairs and handed over our tickets. There were not many people in the room at that point and so as I was talking to the guy processing the tickets, I motioned to the fact that my partner also needed an entry stamp to find I was pointing at an imaginary friend. I glanced over and noticed that Pip had descended the stairs and was half hiding around the corner. I collected her and we headed inside. She told me that it didn't look like we were supposed to be up there and her feeling of discomfort had led her to instinctively search for a cubby hole in which to conceal herself.

There weren't too many people at this album listening session so we got a good spot on two lazy boys and we listened to an over enthusiastic American woman give us the history of the album before playing the original mono vinyl through some high end B&W speakers. What a treat! The album sounded unlike anything I'd ever heard which is a big statement given that I've heard the album on our laptop plenty of times. I now understand the album, I now feel like I've heard it properly and I now want my own room one day where Pip and I can sit and listen to albums in their entirety.