OK, so I just checked my top 100 and whatever list of the whatevers from a few months back and I have The Go-Betweens The Friends of Rachel Worth listed at 95. That’s way way way too low. And Ocean’s Apart somehow sneaks into the third top 10. Those two should be switched, to say the least. I remember thinking that when I was making the list but just deciding to post it and get it over with so I didn’t have to deal with it anymore. Well I’m sorry to all the people who read it…which I’m pretty sure is no one.
Rachel Worth was the seventh album by the Go-Betweens, after a 12 year hiatus of solo projects, other outings and some drug (ab)use. Grant McLennan and Robert Forester were there (obviously) but their usual backing band is no where to be found. So with a little help from keyboardist Sam Coomes, bassist Adele Pickvance, and the girls of Sleater-Kinney the Go-Betweens put out the record of their carrier. One of them anyway.
Of course Sleater-Kinney is a little subdued on this album for Sleater Kinney. They are very much in the background and you wouldn’t even know they were there, or that it was them. Carrie and Corin both provide backing vocals on “Going Blind,” which is the only track to feature all three members of S-K. Janet Weiss is the drummer for the entire album replacing longtime Go-Between Lindy Morrison and does an outstanding job.
So it’s 12 years later, you’re speaking again, what do you do? Make an album. Make the album that you’ve been wanting to make. They’ve grown up some on this album, but it’s more than that. It’s like seeing an old friend you hadn’t seen in so long and expressing everything you’ve done. Maybe it feels too quick, or even a bit rushed at times but that’s because they were trying to say so much. And you can forgive them, because it’s all so sincere. Musically it’s the Go-Betweens after the 90’s, seeing the vast influence of their work represented in the Alt Rock bands that were emerging, they’ve taken it all in, thought about it, and started right where they left off.
Of course, this is 10 years ago that this all happened. They had two more albums, Grant passed on (alone, on the street with just his clothes on him), and Robert is still performing and just complete his first book.
As for the rest of us? We have some music to listen to. And while it isn’t enough, it never is. So we just have to be happy with what we’ve been given. Sometimes that’s how love is.