Teacake at BHS and How 90s Revival Could Go Wrong

by Miles Jones Jr.

My prior prediction that the 90s are due a comeback was further backed up today as 1995 one hit wonders Deep Blue Something returned to the charts to save ailing high street department store brand BHS.

Best (in fact probably only) known for their dull pop rock classic about grabbing a full English in a jewellers, it has now been revamped to remind British shoppers of the deep cultural bonds we all share with a store probably most famous for having the highest population of the elderly outside a murray mint eating contest.

Called ‘Teacake at BHS’ it is basically the same song with reworked lyrics that do not fully fit the rhythm and meter of the piece and basically just seems like a shoehorned cash grab

“And I said “what about teacake at BHS?”
she said “I think I remember the fiddly butter packets.
As I recall, I think we both had a satisfactory time.”
and I said “Well that’s something we got.”
as well as some really reasonably priced beige chinos, buy one get one free.”

So runs the chorus of this shambles of corporate puffery. No taking the opportunity to criticise the fact that high street stores, the steel industry and any semblance of humanity and compassion have been allowed to wither and die under the government which supportively propped up a banking industry rife with insufferable arrogance and greed with taxpayers money, but deems the communities of commerce and industry unworthy.

There’s not even some trite nostalgic Werthers-trip to everyone’s past memories of grabbing a bite at the always understaffed cafés. Oh the exceptionally dry school dinner style bacon, what memories. No hint of love or romance, just advert after advert for the products that will probably soon be flying off the shelves in a department store firesale unseen since the Co-op shut its high street flagships down and people in Ipswich went nuts because of the cheap fags.

Some people think I’m a bit of a snob. I’m not. Some people think the opposite. My arguments against Total Submissive were called into question with some suggesting I don’t value technical accomplishment in my music. This is untrue. I enjoy technical music. I enjoy bad music. I just want all my music to have some kind of passion and soul to it. You can tell when you hear a piece whether the people who made it put something into it or gained something from it. I still listen to ‘Believe’ by Cher for crying out loud. It’s a terrible late 90s dance track that introduced the world to autotune and yet she seems like she really had a ball making that one. You can hear it in the track.

This, this dire ditty, only makes me feel sad. Far from enthusing over the 90s retro revival I’m worried that perhaps the collapse of BHS is what is needed – A burying of the anachronisms being carried aloft the shoulders of the withering, aging and nostalgic traditionalist, and a step into a bold new future of Selfridges and Taylor Swift.

But then my mate Matt comes around with a VHS of Kevin and Perry Go Large and Definitely Maybe on cassette and reminds me why I was angry in the first place. Breakfast at Tiffany’s was not a great song by any means, but in 1995, chucked on a NOW That’s What I call Music compilation tape, an ailing post-Thatcher conservative sleazefest government causing inevitable hope for what might be after the next election before we all knew Tony Blair as the lunatic Bush lapdog ideas above his station war criminal, and with taping the Pepsi Chart off the radio being the Youtube-to-MP3 of its day, man that was a great tune.

Cheesy songs need to stay where they are. We’ve had a Total Eclipse of the Barclaycard, we’ve had Madness’ Our House to an ad for a bad instant coffee, and endless breathy covers for Christmas campaigns thanks to John Lewis. We don’t need music defiled like this. The minute you attach your art to promoting a product, I can no longer trust the passion, independence or message of your art. Deep Blue Something, if you’re going to make a comeback, do it in a classy way, by appearing drunk and confused on celebrity reality TV shows. There’s already so little in the BHS pension pot that, for legal reasons, we cannot imply is because of any financial or accounting impropriety, don’t take money for this drivel.

Now I’m off to play with my Tamagotchi and listen to Barbie Girl on loop.

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