The name as strange as a green moon and that was originally took from an episode of The Goon Show, they were famous for have two bass players in their line up and for an indie band came across as more of a metal band with their fuzzy guitar and image which did not so much verge on, but was a direct prequel to the grunge fashion which was in directly responsible for them going tits up in the UK just a few years after this was released - ie once grunge exploded, magazines and the great unwashed were not interested in them and they split up in 1995. Since 2000 they have been back together (the original line up came back in 2008) and have released one new song since then. There has been the promise of new material, but nothing has come to the forefront, but that is not the reason for this blog. On this occasion we are looking at their first album which comes with its own story.
Before this album was released, these guys were on a record label called Chapter 22. At that point they were becoming one of the most popular bands in the UK; yet Chapter 22 could not keep up with demand and records (back when they were the original form of musical release) were hard to find. This lead to frustration and the band leaving Chapter 22 and signing a distribution deal with Sony Records (via the Columbia label) to release their records on their own label Furtive - thus giving them the clout of a major label in distribution terms, whilst retaining that desirable independence which was hipper than a hipster's shoes in those days (still sort of true today, but it is more of a struggle). With that support behind them in the background, they released God Fodder which peaked at number 4 in the UK charts and they were starting to make inroads in the USA as well.
Starting with one of their earlier number from the Chapter 22 days "Kill Your Television", the band come out with all barrels loaded and shooting from their hips. This was one of the biggest dance floor fillers for those alternative discos of the 90's. Also on this album are previous singles "Until You Find Out" and "Grey Cell Green" which was released on their first ep 'The Ingredients'. The stand out track of the album however is "Happy" which is also their highest charting single in the UK. This track sounds as crisp now as it did back in 1991 when it first came out, it still sends people of a certain age into silly frenzies (I have witnessed this) and apart from their song "Trust" (which has only ever been released on compilations) it is also their stand out track. Whilst the other tracks might not match these songs, they are still of a high quality - take "Nothing Like"; bands such as The Wombats and Foals would kill for something this good, believe me it is much better than about 90% of the alternative music out there now.
So overall what you have a great piece of 90's alternative that whilst not losing any of its charm or durability, is probably going to be lost in the great mix of musical time; whilst the likes of the Happy Mondays (shite), Blur (shite) and New Order (better when they were Joy Division) will be remembered over this little piece of bouncing heaven. Much like the Wonderstuff who they supported in one of their big breaks when they were starting out, they seemed deemed to be an also ran, and this album proves that they were more than this. 'God Fodder' is a brilliant album, one which some bands have tried to recreate charm wish, but have failed totally. Not wanting to sound like an old fart, but it was done better in those days and not pro-tooled to buggery - Mon the Dustbin!!!
7 out of ten - This is good and well worth a check
You can purchase the album from Amazon here
You can visit the Ned's Atomic Dustbin website here
You can listen to the album on Spotify here
Here is a link to the video for "Happy"