JAZZ1 (JAZZY1 picture disc)
Less than a year after singing Never Never for the one-off Assembly single, Feargal Sharkey did another great oddity.
Madness had been around for years and had just left Stiff Records to set up their own label. Peculiarly, they didn't kick off with their own stuff, but with this.
It is basically a Madness single with Feargal on vocals. It was written by Madness' Carl Smyth (aka Chas Smash), and Madness play all the music.
Like other Smyth songs such as Michael Caine, there's no clear meaning but somehow the words fit the music brilliantly; impressionism rather than literalism.
Madness shifted to a more reflective vibe for much of their remaining work (basically the Mad Not Mad album) as typified by the haunting elegant anti-Tory single Yesterday's Men. This, though, has all that gleeful pounding stomp we knew and loved them for.
A year later, autumn 1985, and Sharkey was back with his eponymous debut album and it's flagship single, the Maria McKee-penned A Good Heart. It was all a bit glossy and saccharine, lacking the kick of the Undertones, the emotional punch of Never Never and the kinetic bounce and boistrousness of Listen To Your Father.
At the end of 1985 Madness did a new year's eve concert at Hammersmith Odeon, and Sharkey came on and did Listen To Your Father with them (relased on the Mad Not Mad Party bootleg album if you can find it).
[MP3 deleted to make way for new ones. Sorry!]