The Raincoats – Don't Be Mean

Always a cult favourite, The Raincoats received new attention in the mid-nineties as a result of Kurt Cobain’s constant namechecking. This song, from their Looking in The Shadows LP (their first since 1984’s Moving), was proof that they were still a force to be reckoned with.

Written and sung by the rather wonderful Gina Birch (as confirmed by the “my name may be Birch dear, but I’m not a tree” line), it’s basically a plea for an ex-lover not to ignore her if he ever sees her out and about. It’s funny and quirky and yet also quite moving, particularly during the “even when we’re old and grey” part. The rather frenzied violin, however, gives the impression that the narrator might be just a little unhinged.

Overall, it’s a kind of post-punk take on the classic girl group sound, complete with Phil Spector-ish drums.

About Paul Saxton

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One Response to The Raincoats – Don't Be Mean

  1. Huw Sayer says:

    That’s fun – never heard it before – love the sound (and the talky/singy style) – thank you.

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