By the time I could save up enough money to buy a record (yes, vinyl) my older and wiser friends had split into two distinct camps of musical taste. There were those who prefered what at the time was called “Heavy Metal” and those who didn’t. Being young and impressionable I was initially exposed to the Metal camp via Iron Maiden’s The Number of the Beast album.
I tried to like it but even as an innocent teenager I just didn’t buy it. I pictured myself with long hair, denims and cut off t-shirts with those leather cuffs with the little spikes but that’s a tough look to pull off unless you are built like a viking.
Anyway, the songs on the album had far too much chasing about the hills, devils, sacrifice and the like. I lived in the highlands of Scotland not far from Boleskine House, where Aleister Crowley had raised the real devil and I imagined that if Iron Maiden had wandered along there one moonlit night that they’d have abandoned their cartoon horror, denounced the ways of the metal and switched to acoustic guitars and Arran jumpers.
I was hooked by that song and just could not drum along fast enough to keep up. I cut blisters into my hands, developed aching wrists not to mention ear-ache and a humming in my head from repeat-repeat listenings to SLF at headphone melting volumes.
After several weeks of this my chair was wrecked but I was begining to hatch a far fetched plan which, if successful, would culminate in me becoming Stiff Little Fingers new drummer.