In this regular feature we celebrate that all important opening track on a debut album, because for some it may have been the first song they ever heard from that artist.


In this issue John Hartley relaxes in his father’s favourite chair and casts his salty sore eyes over….

Artist: Ned’s Atomic Dustbin

Album: God Fodder

Year: 1991

Track: Kill Your Television 

I was still at school when I first heard of Neds Atomic Dustbin. So were they. A quintet from the West Midlands, an area already providing plenty for the indie masses in the shape of The Wonder Stuff, The Mighty Lemon Drops, Pop Will Eat Itself amongst others. The band were brought to my attention by an unlikely acquaintance not known for being a doyenne of alternative music at the time. The acquaintance was one of a pair of twins (stupid statement really, as twins don’t come in groups other than pairs, but I digress) and both appeared to be on quite friendly terms with the band, exchanging letters and so forth.

I dutifully bought Neds’ debut, the ‘Ingredients ep’, partly on the twin’s recommendation and partly (not for the first or last time) on the grounds that ‘it might be worth something one day’. I didn’t buy anything else by them, but remained aware of their existence for some time. The ‘Ingredients’ ep garnered much praise; sufficient for their subsequent works to propel them into the realms of fame if not fortune.

‘Kill Your Television’ was to be Neds’ second single, and backed up by tour supports with The Wonder Stuff made the top of the indie charts and a creditable number 52 in the ‘proper’ charts. A feisty guitar effort driven along by the relatively unusual backline of drums and two bass guitars, ‘Kill Your Television’ probably remains the fans’ favourite and was an obvious choice as opening track on the band’s debut album. Released on their own label via Sony Records, ‘God Fodder’ continued the vein of chunky, high-energy guitar pop songs with which Neds Atomic Dustbin became synonymous. ‘Kill Your Television’ meanwhile was to find its way onto Playstation and Xbox football game soundtracks a decade and a half after it set the scene for that debut album.

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What first track on whose first album will John Hartley review next time?