Unfortunately, many Flying Nun bands, including the Straitjacket Fits, were more often than not very poorly represented on record, and it was live that they truly shone. It is this reason that I collect live recordings of many of my favourite Flying Nun bands, and almost in every case will prefer to listen to a cassette recording taken straight from the mixing desk in some pub in 1987 than a more "professional" recording done in a "proper" studio.
I was too young to see Straitjacket Fits during their heyday with Andrew Brough, although almost as a consolation prize I saw them in Christchurch on their 2005 reunion tour, and to this day is one of the most mind blowing gigs I have seen. The song I am going to nominate may not be my all time favourite Shayne Carter song - that is like asking a mother what her favourite child is - but it is my current favourite.
The song "Quiet Come", as presented on the 1990 album Melt, to me sounds somewhat flat and dull. However, a recording I have of Straitjacket Fits performing the song on a live to air on the Los Angeles radio station KPFK on 21 October 1989, is like hearing the four horsemen of the apocalypse come at 400 miles an hour down your street, with the destination of your living room.
The band dynamics in the performance range from the juxtaposition of relaxing on a Sunday afternoon in your backyard with a glass of wine in your hand, only to suddenly have a 8.2 earthquake centered half a kilometer under you happen. This happens back and fourth during the performance. The lyrics, or at least to me, deal with the over familiarity of routine and wanting to get away from it all, but to no avail... "Long days of ground in habit, the wheels keep dragging, my Gibson whispers nothing to me.Those days I pine for silence,The fall of quiet just isn't loud enough"
I love this song, and listen to it on a regular basis. Being a student $25 is a sizable chunk out of my weekly income to attend his gig at Bodega, although if I don't win this I'll still attend. I must have something to sell on the cheap...