Monday, 12 April 2010

Supergrass R.I.P.

This knocked me for six. Not since The Long Blondes announced their departure in 2008 has the split of a band meant this much to me. Supergrass have long been one of my favourite bands and there's a lot of my life that's happened because of the group.

In 2005 I moved away to University and I had accepted an offer from Sheffield. In the October of that year Supergrass were due to play the Octagon at the Students Union and I'd be lying if I said that when I failed to get the grades I needed (and had to find a Uni place through clearing) this wasn't a factor in deciding to go to Sheffield anyway and study a different course. At the time Supergrass were by a distance my favourite group. At the time my listening habits were almost exclusively indie rock and britpop and the sense of fun that Supergrass imbued their records with and the craftsmanship with which they constructed their albums was unmatched by anything that I'd heard at the time, and remains this way until that day.

Far from prolific, between 1994 and 2008 the band put out only six albums and were due to release a seventh (Release The Drones) this summer, but it's now unknown if said album will ever be heard. I sincerely hope that we do. All six of Supergrass' albums were stunning pieces of work with their own distinctive identity. Their greatest hits album, Supergrass Is 10 was released in 2004 and remains my favourite CD to this, containing as it does the first thirds of an unparalleled run of singles along with pretty much the greatest B-side of all time ('Wait For The Sun').

Looking across the career of a band that across many years refused to go shit, and then hearing that they've decided to call it a day is at the same time gutting and inspiring. One the one hand we know that Supergrass are never going to turn into the embarrassment that many of their 'britpop' 'peers' became, but on the other we've been spared seeing what they could possibly have become with another few albums under their belts.

There's really not much more that I can say. I'm pretty cut up about this and am just hoping against all hope that Release The Drones will surface and prove a fitting eulogy.

Here's some of their finest video moments (of which there's more than a few). Sadly, the embedding is disabled, so you'll have to follow the links

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