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Jellyfish - the best band you may not have heard of

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Some things are just too good to last, and leave behind a short but amazing legacy the endures for decades. Fawlty Towers, The UK Office, maybe Fleabag. 

 

Jellyfish were just too good for the early 90s, in an era of grunge and manufactured pop they crafted 2 of the greatest and most musically tight albums I own - they wear their influences on their sleeve clearly - Queen, Beatles, Beach Boys, ELO, XTC, Crowded House and many more but never seem derivative or knock off (like say Oasis), they crafted it into something all of their own.

 

You always know people who love Jellyfish, they start rabbiting on about their favourite track, which is never just one but many of them.

 

A couple of the songs were in film soundtracks, a boyband covered one more recently, but the usual creative differences saw the band break up just 2 albums in, fortunately they are both masterpieces that stand up today.

 

Bellybutton 

220px-Jellyfish_Bellybutton.jpg

 

Spilt Milk

220px-Spilt_Milk_albumcover.jpg

 

This video popped up in the Blur thread the other day and I sat for 3 hours transfixed yesterday watching how these 2 masterpieces I've lived with and loved for almost 3 decades now came into being

 

 

 

So Jellyfish - possibly the greatest band almost nobody has ever heard of.

 

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A passing familiarity, as with most bands of the 90s, fudged through a haze of weed and booze, but nothing like an opinion one way or the other. It was all just background noise to the other things we did.

 

hell, the same way we listened to ugly kid joe, silverfish, and shampoo. Nevermind the spin doctors, madder rose, or fucking STP.  
 

caveat: I’ve never heard music I didn’t think was good. There’s stuff I don’t like, but that’s not to say it’s bad. So...

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Jellyfish were amazing, and spawned so many great and interesting bands and albums after they split.  I'd seen the Bellybutton "making of" video, but not the Spilt Milk one, so thanks for that.  That's my next few lunchtimes sorted.

 

I've followed the members of Jellyfish for years, and the Bird Streets album (featuring and produced by Jason Falkner) made my Albums of the Decade list recently.  All of Jason's solo stuff is worth seeking out, also.  Andy Sturmer has done some great collaborations as well (Bleu and L.E.O. are worth a listen) as well as theme from My Friends Tigger and Pooh, which I watched about a million times with my kids.

 

My contribution to the thread is Creeple Peeple by Roger Joseph Manning Jr.:

 

 

 

 

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Saw them live at the Town & Country* club in or around '93. They were great, my girlfriend at the time was a big fan and dragged me along and I've been a fan ever since.

 

Those albums are the kind you forget about for months and months and then something will happen (like a rllmuk thread!) that makes you remember their brilliance and you spend a couple of days wallowing in them. Which is what I'm going to do right now. 

 

*May have been the Astoria, memory is fuggy. 27 years, fuck! 

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Spilt Milk is an all-time classic.

 

The production alone on it is an absolute solid-gold masterclass.

 

There's a instrumental-only version of it available too and it is stonking.

 

Oh and they made this for Nintendo

 

 

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I've been listening to Imperial Drag again lately.  I never really thought much of the Boy or a Girl single at the time, but the album is amazing.  There's an extended version with a load of demos and unreleased tracks on there, and it's well worth seeking out.

 

 

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Adore both albums in their entirety, but Spilt Milk is in my top 10 albums of all time. Absolutely perfect and picked up both albums reissued on vinyl a couple of years ago and they sound incredible.

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Bellybutton is great, but bejesus Spilt Milk is a masterly album.  I saw them on that tour and they were bloody fantastic.  Anyone even vaguely into powerpop owes it to themselves to check them out.

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