Here is what I know about Lime Garden.
Let me make a correction to that.
I knew nothing about Lime Garden prior to hearing a song called “Pulp” on a Spotify playlist.
After hearing that song, here is what I know about Lime Garden.
They come from Brighton.
They look great.
I know what you are going to say, “What difference does it make how they look?”
I’ll tell you.
It makes all the difference.
I am done with bands who look like they have done all of their shopping in Sports Direct. I want a band who look like they have spent hours, days, weeks, trawling through second-hand shops (not “vintage stores”) to find just the right top.
You know what Oscar Wilde said? No? I’ll tell you. “Only a fool doesn’t judge a book by its cover.” And if he didn’t say it, he should have. Because it’s true.
Lime Garden are from Brighton and they look great.
For me that is enough but I know for many others the really important thing is, how do they sound.
They sound as good as they look.
“Surf ‘n’ Turf” sounds like Cud…a glorious mish-mash of English indie jangle and seventies inner-city funk. “I told her tele-path-ic-ally…I just want to eat my cheese in peace” might sound silly or daft but when it’s delivered with the sort of achingly cool, hipper than hipster, vocals that this is, it sounds like the most profound thing you have ever heard.
There is something of Half Man Half Biscuit in that ability to deliver a slightly wonky, off kilter, borderline surreal, line and do so with a straight face. The reason for the straight face isn’t because they don’t know it’s funny or weird…it’s because they know exactly how funny and weird it sounds.
“Fever” is groovy. But in a resolutely English way. “Why should I stand up, when I’m the only one who sits? Mirror mirror on the wall, I’m the fairest of them all…”. Meanwhile a bass throbs and pulses in such a seductive way as to be bordering on an intimate encounter. I felt all peculiar while listening.
“Sick and Tired” sounds like elevator music. If the elevator was in a tower block designed by David Cronenberg on ecstasy. It swoops and swoons, all romantic and lovely but cut through with noises, and colours, off. A distracted vocal that manages to sound urgent and vital. These are clever tricks.
And that brings me to the song that started this little journey, “Pulp”. I think, and I am being entirely serious, it might be the best song you will hear in 2021. I know. Here he goes again with the grandiose, hyperbolic, Tony Wilson-esque, declarations of this or that thing being the biggest, the bestest, the boldest and the bravest. But this time I think I really mean it (I know I said that the last time I tried to convince you of something). But isn’t that the whole point of pop music? Isn’t it meant to rush into your face and your heart, push you over, make your heart skip-skip-skip a beat, pick you up, dance with you and then leave you breathless?
In that case…Lime Garden are the greatest pop band I have ever heard in my whole rotten life.