Big Gold Dream – DVD Review – Record Collector – April 2017

(c) Allan Glen / Record Collector 2017

History – as this documentary reminds us – is written by the winners. With non-appearances from Postcard’s inimitable figureheads Alan Horne and Edwyn Collins, it is left to Fast Product’s Bob Last to fashion and contextualise the story of the two labels’ dominance over Scottish post-punk. In his deft retelling, an engaging and riveting tale it is, too.
Turning the focus to the Keir Street flat near Edinburgh College of Art where the enterprising Last and then-girlfriend Hilary Morrison dreamt up Fast, director Grant McPhee takes us on a journey that begins with kitchen parties and toasties and ends with broken dreams, alleged death threats and The Human League’s game-changing global smash Dare. In between are insights from a procession of colourful characters, among them Scars’ Robert King – wearing the most bizarre sunglasses ever seen on a man – Strawberry Switchblade’s Jill Bryson and the enigmatic Davy Henderson, who almost steals the show.
The angular, frenetic guitars captured on those early Josef K and Fire Engines singles may sound increasingly melodic today owing to regular recycling from the mid-90s onwards – Alan McGee’s reimagining of Get Up And Use Me in the film is worth the cover price alone – yet it is still a delight to be reminded of a time when much of the mainstream music industry looked on aghast at the sound of this new noise from a group of outsiders demanding to be heard.
Tartan Features | BIGGOLDDREAM (DVD)
Reviewed by Allan Glen

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