it's always a thing of beauty, or if you like a beautiful thing look you see, when the universe all comes together and delivers matters which mean stuff. chance, fate, happy accident, meant to be or just one of them things doesn't really matter, it just is. like today.
today is the day that marks four years since we, that is i, my (considerably) better half, two very very dear friends who will be friends for life and about 54,996 people we, like all groups of four there, made a special bond with, were stood in the grounds of Heaton Park, bearing witness and paying respect to the band that was, are and always will be The Stone Roses.
a nice touch, then, that my 7" and CD single of All For One by The Stone Roses should arrive today.
surely, you are correct. the new single off of The Stone Roses is not "new" as such - it was released in a non physical form back in May, and we've since had another non-physical form release of another new song off of the band since then. it's just that now, and only now, has it been released "proper", which is to say in a format you can touch feel and physically take actions in respect of playing it.
what i had in my hands earlier today, then, was the first new record by The Stone Roses in some 21 years. how many years depends on how you count - there was one new track on the Ten Storey Love Song single, and the ill-fated, poor choice Begging You single was just all remixes.
why is this important? i mean that pretty much as a direct question as much as i do a means of departure for conversation. no, not why is a new song off of The Stone Roses important, everyone just knows and accepts that. i mean more why is the existence of it in a physical form something that means so much?
it is, after all, a one track single. there's no b-side to the 7" as we shall soon see here. the lines are now blurred when it comes to the quality of a CD or vinyl being "better" than a download; digital recording has kind of negated the romance of it all.
i don't know, all this download stuff just feels so damned impersonal and disposable i suppose. you don't cherish or fall in love with a download - you do with an actual record. well, if you're lucky.
so, four years ago. wow.
as the sounds of Stoned Love faded and the video screens showed the band coming to the stage, Reni paused, bowed with grace and said thank you to all of us. i guess that's better than him having a massive ego about it, but still man, that's bewildering. we owe him so much he, as shown by how he was so dearly missed in his years in hiding, owes us not a single calorie of anything. welcome back, all of you. the world needed you four together more than you four together needed the word; i'm glad you switched off and felt.
so, yeah. one track CD single. yes, there were theories that it would actually be a whole new album that The Stone Roses posted you. nope, as you can see here, one track single with a 3:37 playing time.
yes i checked for the hidden track trick you can do with a CD. what's that? well, zero or 00 is a number. it exists on all CDs as such, but players are designed to go to track 01. if you get hold of the CD called Songs In The Key Of X (i think that's what it is called), play it and immediately hold in the "fast backwards" or if you like rewind button, you spin back to track 00, which is a boss remix of the X Files theme. no, there is no hidden 00 track on the CD single of All For One.
a little snippet, in non-camcorder mode, of the CD single in action? absolutely, why not. well, many of you seem unable to play the video bits on here - those what use Apple or Blackberry at the least. no idea on you Android user, but proper computer users should be a-ok.
if the concept of a one track CD single is pretty easy to grasp, imagine and visualise, what then does the b-side of a one-sided 7" single look like? black, ladies and gentlemen. it looks black.
a lot of people have kicked off about this, claiming it to be ripping off the fans, what a waste of money, etc. if a new song was too much to ask for, would it have killed them to shove the instrumental of All For One on too, or even a live recording off of any of the shows from the reunion era? evidently yes.
i get why people sense a money grab here, and i do not entirely disagree with them. that said, as i've said before on the subject of this, they're raking in many, many, tres many coins of money from the live shows. the profit off of this one track single would, i suspect, barely make it worth the effort.
do i feel ripped off? no, not at all. why not? if at any stage between 1996 and 2011 (prior press conference announcing their return) someone had said "you can have one more new Stone Roses song but it will cost you £10", i would have handed over the coins of money with absolutely no questions asked.
i am thrilled to own this as a physical thing, and i look forward to, in a little while, my one sided 12" off second "comeback" single Beautiful Thing landing. perhaps you're happy, in terms of All For One, in owning a legal download, owning an illegal download, or even just "stream river it" ing the song. perhaps you are of a mind that you would be happy if so long as your arse still faces south you never hear the song again, ever. that's all cool, dig what you dig.
any signs of a new, ostensibly third album off of The Stone Roses? no, not yet. we can but hope one is imminent, but you get the sense that nothing will be said until the latest gigs are done, or until Beautiful Thing has shipped. or maybe these two songs are the only ones they felt were worth releasing / could be arsed to do. the former and the latter are weirdly as likely.
right, let me go and give it another spin, then. well, another spin or twelve or so.
be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!