Happy Mondays' retooling of this song may have resulted in a sun kissed meld of dance and indie but the original is a much darker, stranger creation. Kongos was an emigre South African who had passed through a handful of bands before becoming a hack songwriter. One of his demos caught the ear of producer Gus Dudgeon. The result was a single that crash-landed between psychedelia and glam, but owed an allegiance to neither. The fact that it was a hit for the Mondays two decades later proved Kongos was ahead of his time.
Availability: Tokoloshe Man See For Miles CD
95. SPARKS: This Town Ain't Big Enough For The Both of Us/ Barbecutie(1974)
It took Ron Mael one Sunday afternoon to write, but its shadow extends over Sparks' entire career. Part narrative, part landslide, this bizarre tale about a town with, "not enough [girls] to go round" was written in Beckenham of all places. A year later, of course, Queen scored their biggest hit by cramming an entire rock opera onto the grooves of a seven-inch single, however, to listen to This Town Ain't Big Enough For The Both Of Us and its similarly grandiloquent flipside is to remember that they weren't the first.
Availability: Kimono My House ISLAND CD