the red penguin

Catch – Bingo

Have I not blogged for three months? Oops – I blame work, study, family and everything else. I only discovered this song about two years ago – it just completely passed me by when it came out in September 1997. It even appeared on Top Of The Pops, and I still missed it, even though I watched it regularly. I’m guessing I might have been still playing OK Computer day and night when this song came out.

But I absolutely love it now and I don’t understand why this band were never bigger. They were kind of Britpoppy – actually with those horns on this track, they were very Britpoppy – but they would have really appealed to the audience for McFly or Busted so maybe they were just the right band at the wrong time.

This single made no 23 and a follow up, Dive In, made no 44. Their one and only album was never released in the UK, and it’s at this point you wonder whether someone has been messing with Wikipedia, because from there you learn that it was only ever released in Indonesia. But it’s true …

Lead singer Toby Slater wasn’t happy with the album. This explains why it was never released in the UK, which probably annoyed the then-mighty Virgin Records who had signed them.

It seems from various YT comments that they did a lot of media in Indonesia and Thailand and built up quite a following there. The album is available – unofficially – on YouTube, and no other streaming services, officially or otherwise.

After Catch, Toby was involved in other bands and event organisation, but sadly died in December 2021 aged just 42. He was the son of singer Stephanie de Sykes, who was a TV staple in the 1970s, and Stu James, lead singer with 60s Liverpool beat band The Mojos, who featured a very young Lewis Collins on drums. Lewis was writing songs with Mike McGear (Paul McCartney’s brother) and was recommended by him to replace Pete Best. Lewis turned down an audition he was offered, and eventually became an actor. I’m glad about this, because the Beatles turned out OK, and I really liked The Professionals.

Thursday 9 February 2023, 15612 views

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