Album #184: Sad Lovers & Giants – Epic Garden Music

  • Released: 1982
  • Origin: Watford, England
  • Label: Midnight Music
  • Best Track: Clocktower Lodge

I always think of Joy Division, Wire and Public Image Limited as the holy trinity of British post-punk, with The Cure too mainstream to be included and The Fall too much of a cult of their own. In reality though, there were loads more bands peddling the sound, and someone who likes the genre as much as me should be familiar with more of them.

I discovered the brilliant And Also the Trees this year and am now working my way through their catalogue. I’ve been alerted by certain music streaming platforms that “People who like And Also the Trees also like Sad Lovers & Giants”, so let’s test the accuracy of that suggestion.

Sad Lovers & Giants formed just outside London in 1980, and have released seven albums to date, most recently in 2018. I’ve started with their 1982 debut Epic Garden Music.

This is a pretty haunting record, particularly so in the ghostly guitars of ‘Clint’ and the saxophone lament of ‘Lope’. I’d pick out one of the album’s longer and slower paced tracks, ‘Clocktower Lodge’ as the highlight.

Some tracks are largely instrumental, but those that are richer in lyrics tend to be poetic and intriguing – take ‘Alice (Isn’t Playing) with its arresting “In the light you can disappear without a trace/In the night every shadow seems to burn your face”.

I don’t quite have the feeling of excitement and discovery I had when I found And Also the Trees, but I’m fond of this debut from Sad Lovers & Giants and will be giving them further listening.

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