Taking Sides: Mighty Lemon Drops vs. The Railway Children

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Both groups were guilty of occasionally mimicking Echo & the Bunnymen, and both had brief moments of glory now and again. The Railway Children (perhaps wisely) quit after three records, while the Mighty Lemon Drops extended their stay well into the 90s (perhaps to their detriment). Both seemed to peak in 1988 -- the Railway Children with Recurrence and the Mighty Lemon Drops with World Without End.

What say ye?

Johnny Fever (johnny fever), Sunday, 30 November 2003 17:34 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I'll say I own an unfeasible amount of Railway Children material and haven't felt the urge to listen to any of it for about ten years. However, the fact that I have never parted with them on the off-chance I may feel oddly nostalgic for them and want to listen to them again one day puts them above the Mighty Lemon Drops, who I know I could cheerfully live without never hearing again.

(Appalling grammar. I know.)

ailsa (ailsa), Sunday, 30 November 2003 18:21 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

the Mighty Lemon Drops, who I know I could cheerfully live without never hearing again.

Aww, that's sad.

Johnny Fever (johnny fever), Sunday, 30 November 2003 18:26 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

These are two of the bands I was introduced to by Dave Kendall on 120 Minutes, a period of time that shaped the tastes in music I have now.

Why do I favor the Mighty Lemon Drops? On a school field trip to Atlanta, my 9th grade ass was turned loose in the Underground Mall where I went to Sam Goody and bought a copy of World Without End. A girl, who was also shopping there, said "good call," then asked if I wanted to go get a Coke. Now, whenever I heard "Inside Out," I think about that girl who ended up being an off-again/on-again penpal for about a year.

I have no such ties to the Railway Children, but like them anyway.

Johnny Fever (johnny fever), Sunday, 30 November 2003 18:32 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Never heard the Railway Children, but I remember quite liking a few tracks by the Mighty Lemon Drops, mostly off World Without End. I liked "Unkind" as well.

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Sunday, 30 November 2003 18:44 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

My enduring thought about the MLD is just the wannabe-Bunnymen predictability of their song titles - three-word bursts like All I Want, In My Mind, la di dah. Like An Angel - classic ! Nowt else necessary. Ditto Railway Children's Brighter, which I always think of alongside Therese and Heard It All by the Bodines - sweet tunes in a northern-indie stylee.

darren (darren), Sunday, 30 November 2003 18:55 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

my sister went out with the railway children guy and all i got was this lousy tshirt

Pablo Cruise (chaki), Monday, 1 December 2003 03:17 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

i don't remember any mighty lemon drops, but the railway children's "brighter" is utterly wonderful to my ears

the surface noise (electricsound), Monday, 1 December 2003 03:27 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Saw them both in 1988, oddly enough. I only went to see the Lemon Drops because they had the Wild Swans supporting them. Yep, the Wild Swans. The Droppies were pretty standard in their Bunnymen-lite jangle pop, and their encore version of "Paint it black" was hilarious. The Railway Children were better, in that it was just before "Recurrence" was issued so they only did a few songs from that plus most, if not all, of the "Reunion Wilderness" mini-LP.

So, in the long run, "Brighter" wins.

Rob M (Rob M), Monday, 1 December 2003 08:51 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I seem to recall once having The Railway Children on my get list -- i already had a fair amount of MLDs records; so, the Droppies by default.

christoff (christoff), Monday, 1 December 2003 15:07 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

three months pass...
Actually, I'm quite proud of my lemon drops collection. Started listening to them 15 years ago when I was in 8th grade (US). I only managed to see them once, but it was great. Yeah, they have a bunnymen sound, but it's great. Peope do the same shite comparing the bunnymen with U2, and I think U2 sucks heavily. After all these years, I still collect and listen to Mac and the Bunnymen (even have it on my license plate) and the lemon drops. The railway children on the other hand, I never listen to, although I still can hear their first single to hit 120 minutes.

happylemoncarpets, Monday, 22 March 2004 02:48 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
The Railway Children give me more joy than most pop groups, nowadays.

the bellefox, Wednesday, 27 April 2005 15:08 (twelve years ago) Permalink

two years pass...

I'm listening the the Railway Children's -Radio One Sessions- and echo the above statement. Such calming, reassuring jangle pop... just what I needed today after a month of 4 hours of sleep per night. The third baby's a killer!

Mr. Odd, Wednesday, 23 May 2007 17:49 (ten years ago) Permalink

ten years pass...

Taking in Reunion Wilderness for the first time in ages and, holy hell, could these boys write a redemptive hook.

Austin, Friday, 16 June 2017 03:20 (ten months ago) Permalink

I guess the Madchester thing wiped them out; did they ever go baggy?

mahb, Friday, 16 June 2017 09:52 (ten months ago) Permalink

did they ever go baggy?

the railway children most certainly did.
saw them at reading 90 in cycling gear with that shuffling baggy beat.
one single was released with a lot of remixes, used to have it on cd.

mark e, Friday, 16 June 2017 10:21 (ten months ago) Permalink

The only other album of theirs I've heard was Native Place and it was just so bland.

Never heard that second album.

Austin, Friday, 16 June 2017 15:54 (ten months ago) Permalink

I liked Every Beat of the Heart at the time. Never heard any of their other stuff. Might give their first album a listen.

Not that keen on Mighty Lemon Drops but I don't know much of their stuff either other than their track on C86.

Colonel Poo, Friday, 16 June 2017 16:34 (ten months ago) Permalink

Music Stop had baggy-ish Steve Proctor mixes, I believe. I still like Native Place though. I'd pick Railway Children over MLD, but I still like them both.

brotherlovesdub, Friday, 16 June 2017 16:36 (ten months ago) Permalink

the lemmoes did a baggy version of the Stones' We Love You.

everything, Friday, 16 June 2017 17:17 (ten months ago) Permalink

This one too. Doesn't really work for them tbh. They were best as a Echo & the Bunnymen homage.


everything, Friday, 16 June 2017 17:37 (ten months ago) Permalink

Easy to identify the vocals of Paul Marsh in a crowd; easy on the ears, 'tis.

bodacious ignoramus, Friday, 16 June 2017 18:24 (ten months ago) Permalink

I liked the Mighty Lemon Drops first two (three? does Out of Hand count?) albums, with World Without End being the clear winner. I still have those three on vinyl. Kind of lucked into them back in Reno after we started dealing in used stuff at Tower.

I'd still the Railway Children over them, just on the strength of Reunion Wilderness.

If anyone cares, I did a short top five list years ago of my favorite underrated jangle albums on my blog (of which Reunion Wilderness is #3).

Austin, Friday, 16 June 2017 18:33 (ten months ago) Permalink

the lemon drops never did the baggy thing.
they just did the slow song/fast song thing.

mark e, Friday, 16 June 2017 19:30 (ten months ago) Permalink

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