Vox's Best of '95 cassette:
1. This Is A Call - Foo Fighters
A year after Kurt Cobain's - and ultimately Nirvana's - demise, drummer Dave Grohl announced Foo Fighters to the world. This was their debut single proper and immediately hit the Top 5 in the UK as did their debut eponymous album. Give them a few years and they'd be one of the biggest stadium rock bands in the world...
2. He Thought Of Cars - Blur
Blur may have won the Blur-Oasis singles chart battle with Country House but Oasis won the war with the era-defining ...Morning Glory. Blur's The Great Escape reached #1 but was not nearly as loved as Parklife previously. Ultimately, it marked the end of Blur Mk1 before they shed the Britpop sound that made them famous. This relatively downbeat track is one of The Great Escape's highlights.
3. Sitting Up Straight (Live) - Supergrass
One of the few bands to be born during the so-called Britpop years to last the distance, something they did until last year when they became one of the era's final casualties. Sitting Up Straight was one of the first 'Grass songs appearing as B-side to the original 7" release of Mansize Rooster in its initial incarnation. The track was re-recorded and appeared on the re-released Rooster single and subsequently on their classic debut I Should Coco. This live version is only available on this cassette and was recorded at 1995's T In The Park Festival.
4. In The Name Of The Father (Choppers Mix)- Black Grape
1995's most unexpected, and celebrated, comeback. After Happy Mondays' messy split, Shaun Ryder's future looked bleak. He returned, alongside Bez and Kermit from Ruthless Rap Assassins amongst others, with Black Grape and massive album It's Great When You're Straight...Yeah. In The Name Of The Father preceded the album as their second single and hit #8. The Choppers Mix, mislabelled here as the Chopper Mix, was remixed by Danny Saber. Shaun Ryder was last seen on This Morning.
5. Down By The Water - PJ Harvey
Second outing for this To Bring You My Love in a week on TheFreeEPs. Harvey's new album Let England Shake is out on February 14th.
6. History - The Verve
The third single from The Verve's second album A Northern Soul was to be their final single. Posthumously released, it became their biggest hit reaching #24. Needless to say, the History books had to be rewritten two years later......
7. Sorted For Es & Wizz (Live) - Pulp
Recorded live at their triumphant Glastonbury performance in 1995. Pulp were only invited to perform Glasto after illness forced a dying Stone Roses to pull out. On the back of the release of the anthem Common People, this couldn't have come at a better time and the band went on to become one of the era's defining bands.
8. Yes - McAlmont & Butler
David McAlmont's career was going precisely nowhere until he hooked up with Bernard Butler, fresh from leaving Suede behind. Combined, the results were magic and Yes became an immediate Top 10 and one of 1995's most uplifting singles. The two released one more single, You Do, and one album - which wasn't much more than a compilation of their singles - before splitting acrimoniously. They did patch things up for one more album, Bring It Back, in 2002. Since then, McAlmont has kept himself busy on the jazz circuit. Butler has not only worked with Brett Anderson again with the one-off Tears project but also become a producer of note, producing amongst others Duffy's huge Rockferry.
9. (Nice Dream) - Radiohead
Radiohead had little to do with their contemporaries but almost certainly benefitted from the Britpop movement and the resurgence of indie/alternative rock with huge sales for their album The Bends which included this track. The album's huge, epic sound was light years from their grunge-inflected debut Pablo Honey. The band would travel several more light years over the next decade...
10. Screamager (Live) - Therapy?
The original version of Screamager was taken from NI's biggest alternative metal band Therapy?'s highest charting single, the Shortsharpshock EP which hit the Top 10 in 1993. The band scored several more hits throughout 1993 and 1994 before releasing the dark, ballad-laden album Infernal Love in 1995, which still hit the Top 10 and spawned three Top 40 singles. It proved to be the band's last major stab at success, their next album Semi Detached proving less successful before they retreated into cultdom.
11. Hyperballad - Bjork
Even though this was the 4th single from Bjork's second album Post, and released after given away free on this very cassette, it still managed to hit #8. This was no doubt in part to being released straight off the back of Bjork's big pop single, It's Oh So Quiet. Although it was probably given a leg-up by a lot of casual buyers who weren't expecting this wonderful slice of electronica, justice was done as this is one of Bjork's finest moments and deserved to be a Top 10 hit.