Belated Music Monday: The Clientele


What was the purpose of living before I heard the Clientele? I have no idea. But thank the Lordy I've heard them, my ears and eyes have been opened. I am alive again. I have been listening to their God Save the Clientele album over and over and over for the past week. Its so good. If you like Camera Obscura or just any of the best music coming out of the British Isles these days, then you need to hear the Clientele.

Also, I stumbled upon the blog of Alisdair, from the band, today. (Here's some of the other band members' blogs: Mel, Mark ) I was looking at their main website and noticed he had posted a little something on his personal blog:

John Clare in Hiding
It was often the fate of the religious
who went to hear God in desert silences
to hear instead some other, unbreable, voice.
-Robert Blythe (President of the John Clare Society)

This suddenly made me want to cry. Not particularly because of the poem itself, but because it reminded me of my childhood. I grew up in a small village of 400 people in England called Helpston, the hometown of the English poet John Clare. Notice, the title of the poem is John Clare in Hiding. I then followed the link he posted to a long discussion by Robert Blythe, about John Clare. It includes some poems by John Clare and stories about his personality, his nature, his love of the nature in our mutual home village.
Ahg, this poem by John Clare just makes me drift quickly into melancholy dreams of Helpston.

O could I be as I have been
And ne’er can be no more
A harmless thing in meadows green
Or on the wild sea shore

O could I be what once I was
In heaths and valleys green
A dweller in the summer grass
Green fields and places green

A tenant of the happy fields
By grounds of wheat and beans
By gipsies camps and milking bield
Where luscious woodbine leans

I wish I was what I have been
And what I was could be
As when I roved in shadows green
And loved my willow tree

To gaze upon the starry sky
And higher fancies build
And make in solitary joy
Loves temple in the field

So, not only do you get some exposure to a fantastic band in this post, but you also get a little bit of my heart via John Clare's poetry and Robert Blythe's musings.


Baroque Pop Radio said...

If the world were fair, the Clientele would be at the top of the charts. The last I heard from them was an E.P. released in 2008.

Suki said...

I came to your blog through Alela Diane... and discovered the Clientele! Thanks!


Lovely White Things said...

Good call! They are fabulous!!