Our Thursday in Belper reaches its crescendo now, like in Sibelius 5th, as we approach the gorgeous market place at dusk.

Some opted for the (excellent) Angels micro pub, some stuck to the Marston’s Proper Pubs, but we all seemed to regroup and compare NBSS scores in the Nag’s Head, the very definition of “solid”.

Of course, a beer range of Pedi and Razorback gives you a summary of “a lively popular town pub” on What Pub, but squeals of delight from Old Codgers. 

Not my round (“Is it ever ?” says Dave) so I shout “Half of Pedi please” and head for the window seat with the Banks’s pump and classic lighting for company,

while the rest of the Codgers stand at the bar.

What can they possibly be deciding ?

Only one choice, and a classic sulphurous drop of Marston’s finest (until it starts supplying Bass again).

This was the busiest pub of the day, 20 or so in before 4pm, which is quite something.

NB For anyone expecting a Marillion video based on the title, you’re out of luck. But Sheffield Jeff, which I expect I’ve spelt wrong, had seen Aylesbury’s finest (or was that Howard Jones ?). In fact he’d seen EVERYONE who we heard playing on the stereo that Belper afternoon. Even Suede.

But not Sibelius. Serious omission there.


      1. The Daily Mash doesn’t mention Marillion at any rate –

        MUSIC history is littered with performers hailed as groundbreaking legends. Here are some you’ll get abuse for if you so much as hint they’re not musical geniuses.

        The Clash

        Punk visionaries or a bit of a pub band? Some weird, meaningless lyrics – how exactly does one go about ‘rocking’ a North African citadel? – and a lot of ultra-simple tunes. Still, at least they’re easy to play, although with ‘Should I Stay or Should I Go?’ you may not want to.

        Kate Bush

        Nothing screams ‘pretentious, arty 6th form drama student’ more than devoting a song to the plot of an Emily Bronte novel while performing a painfully silly dance. The queen of the ear-crippling caterwaul, Kate had the chance to tell Peter Gabriel to stop whining on ‘Don’t Give Up’ but instead chose to join in

        The Stone Roses

        Having a singer who can’t hit a single f**king note is usually a drawback for a band, but it didn’t trouble the Roses. Pity the sound engineers who had to sit through Ian Brown’s haplessly tuneless vocals night after night. Also think back to the up-our-own-arses outro to ‘Fool’s Gold’ which went on longer and more unpleasantly than a tantric shag with Sting.


        Possibly okay during the Peter Gabriel years so long as you were a stoned art student with a silly wispy beard. But when bland professional Cockney Phil Collins took over, even that last vestige of respectability evaporated. ‘I Can’t Dance’ should have been called ‘I Can’t Write A Song That Isn’t Hopelessly Naff’. Your mum probably likes them too.

        Bruce Springsteen

        Controversial choice but worthy of inclusion just for that godawful rendition of ‘Santa Claus Is Coming To Town’. No one has ever been able to decipher what ‘Dancing In The Dark’ is about, although apparently ‘this gun’s for hire’. We do know unequivocally where Bruce was born, so at least that’s cleared up.

        Jethro Tull

        Naming yourself after an 18th century agriculturalist who invented something as boring as the seed drill should be a red flag right from the start. Having a frontman who can play the flute while standing on one leg might have been deemed novel and entertaining from a jester in a medieval court, but that’s probably where it needs to stay.”


      2. The official retiredmartin view on those;

        The Clash – Nope, but I loved the meaningless Sandinista triple album

        Kate Bush – Uncriticisable, bar “Don’t Give Up”

        The Stone Roses – “I am the Resurrection” & “Fools Gold” aren’t enough to justify their reputation

        Genesis – One good track. And not “Abacab”. Oh, I’m thinking about “In the Air Tonight”, that’s Phil isn’t it ?

        Bruce Springsteen – Uncriticisable, bar the 8 minute “Outlaw Pete”

        Jethro Tull – I did like “Gaudette”, to be fair.

        You missed Bowie off that list.


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