Beautiful South - Pockets

Artist: Beautiful South

Song: Pockets

Album: Quench (1998)

Following the disbandment of the British indie pop group the Housemartins in 1989, vocalist Paul Heaton and drummer David Hemmingway formed the Beautiful South. more

QUENCH, the Beautiful South's sixth album, finds them a little more musically introspective and somewhat more melancholy than before, though the songs still maintain the band's twin obsessions: singing about drunks, about drinking, and about being drunk; and disguising brutal and often cruel lyricswith deceptively sweet (verging on sad) music. From the slide-guitar tinged "How Long's a Tear Take to Dry", through the miniature epic-weepie "The Slide", to the jaunty snipe-fest of "Your Father and I", the album swings on a number of intriguing contradictions.

"Dumb" introduces an oddly introspective mood before breaking into a Motown-influenced chorus. "Window Shopping for Blinds" swaps its string-saturated opening for something that mixes a German beer hall and a Western saloon, while "I May Be Ugly" is a track that, other than its explicit drug references and crass juxtapositional jokes, wouldn't sound out of place being sung by Jim Croce. The best cut, however, is the piano-driven "The Table", which obliquely examines a familial relationship from the perspective of a table.

Pockets starts with a nice little Red Hot Chili Peppers esque funky guitar hook.


Here comes Pockets

His trousers hold a thousand deadly sins
The maddest things we ever found in bins
He clutches them and looks at you and grins
Here comes Pockets
The children wary of what they may contain
The linen may have changed, the contents same
A trouser-treasure island with no name

And socially at the platform that the timetable forgot
Picking up used tickets in a station of have-nots
When you're on that train of thought
You pass some pretty funky stops
When you're on that train of thought
You pass some pretty funky stops
That's the Pocket, let him be - That's the Pocket, let him be

Here comes Pockets
Picking up the things we cannot see
A bicycle, a dame, a Christmas tree
Things of no value to you or me

Here comes the Pocket
Reduced through history to just a crawl
History turns the tall into the small
But natural born trawlers love to trawl

And the guitar of his dreams hangs upon some wall
Or laying underneath the staircase in a hall
We can carry dreams but we can't hold them all
That's why we learn the Blues before we actually fall
That's the Pocket, let him be
That's the Pocket, let him be

And he's clinging on to hope
Like the oak tree to the gale
'Cause finding one love letter in a sky high jumble sale
Is one single reason, why the Pocket will not fail

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