Crate-Digging Archive: Gomez – Abandoned Shopping Trolley Hotline

I have a completely-filled 120 GB iPod classic, the record crate of the digital age, containing my entire music library. I’m listening to each release in alphabetical order by record title – kind of a virtual archaeological dig. These are my findings.

[Originally published February 23, 2009, and presented here with minimal revision.]

(Virgin, 2000)

Here I am, record #3, and I already wanted to skip it. Sigh. I have two other Gomez albums and an EP somewhere along the line too, so there’s that to look forward to. Or maybe I’ll just delete them right out of the iPod. [Ed. note: Yep, I’ve deleted them.]

This is a true college flashback record, recalling a time when long hair and huge skater clothes were the norm. This stone-out blooze-soul-hippie band out of the UK somehow made it onto my radar, and I really did enjoy them for a while. Then I kinda stopped smoking… Gomez thrive on the slurry tempo, all the better to chill out to. The main singer (there are two) has a gravely Joe Cocker wail (but smoother, think Dalwhinnie to Cocker’s Beam) which upon further inspection, sounds too much like freaking Dave Matthews for his own good. I’m embarrassed typing that, coming into such close proximity to the DMB sound, but there you go. (God, I hate Dave Matthews. Hate. So much. ) As players, they’re pretty tight, but not terribly adventurous. And this is a B-sides comp.

There are a few nice tracks on here – the version of “78 Stone Shuffle,” “Steve McCroski,” and their cover of the Beatles’ “Getting Better” – but not enough to make me forget that I’ve simply outgrown Gomez. I did skip past the 9-minute “Buena Vista” – no chance I was getting through that muck.

I do have one incredibly fond memory of Gomez: In the early spring of 2000, my future wife and I visited her sister, brother, and nephew in Atlanta for a week. We ended up going to a couple shows, Gomez being one of them, and that started a brief flirtation for us with the band, enough that I bought In Our Gun when it came out the following year. (Bad idea, but oh well.) The show was really good, definitely a high point – it was a great week inextricably linked to Gomez. Although maybe my dissatisfaction was foreshadowed as I was nailed with a nasty bout of carsickness the day of the show….

RIYL: Hippie crap, bar bands


7 responses to “Crate-Digging Archive: Gomez – Abandoned Shopping Trolley Hotline

  1. I do want to say that I’m glad your relationship was able to survive its brief flirtation with bad music. My experience is that shitty music is often a relationship killer.

    My first wife had good taste in music when I met her. We got engaged. Then she started listening to Snow Patrol, as well as becoming obsessed with that awful song “Breath Me” by Sia — that horrible song that was on the final episode of Six Feet Under and, for a brief period of time, was featured in just about every commercial you would hear. (“Hurt myself again today…” I throw up in my mouth a little every time I hear that song.) We were only married for about a year. I’m not saying that her poor taste in music was the reason for our divorce — but even if we hadn’t split up, no good was going to come from that marriage. Did I mention she also watched Grey’s Anatomy?

    I’m going to shut up now before I get myself in trouble. 🙂


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