Heard of Cornershop? Granted, you haven't had much chance. They picked up a few mentions in trendy corners of Q a while back, for things like Oasis support slots (but then, Oasis should be grateful for the opportunity to support anyone these days). Last week the Guardian 2 ran a brief article on the band and their patronage by David Byrne, a man currently keen to recover lost credibility ground caused by a penchant for self-indulgent Brazilian rhythms. Cornershop, it seemed, were going places. I turned the page, thinking, "Well, that's the last we'll hear of them."
Friday night, I caught TOTP and it was barely watchable mush. However, noticing that Celine Dion had been unceremoniously ejected from no.1 after a mere week (so the market for weep-by-numbers, over-produced, bollocky balladry has "softened", has it Celine?), I stayed tuned out of curiosity.
Boom! "Brimful of Asha" by Cornershop, in at 1! Wha', who?
OK, it's a sneaky little tune, although I suspect most of the appeal is in Tjinder Singh's emphasised enunciation of "forty-five". But heck, if two blokes backed only by yesterday's art-punk star and his crafty publicist can pull a no.1 out of the bag within two weeks, why bother watching TOTP anymore? Even my Grandad and his dog could have a hit on that basis (probably entitled "Come back here, you stupid animal (woof)"). Celine, you've wasted way too much money.
1st March 1998