Ah Manchester, you gave us baggy trousers, ecstacy and the Hacienda. Manchester, home of grown men with pudding bowl haircuts and 35 inch flares. Manchester: Moss Side murders, Hulme squatter and Tony Wilson.
They might have had all that, but we were from Yorkshire and any sane person knew in their heart of hearts that we were better. Let's be really honest here The Wedding Present were (and indeed still are) far better than The Smiths. Noone does angst-ridden misery quite like a man from Leeds. Morrissey? trying too hard, a bit wet. No one can strangle his vocals quite like David Gedge.
And as for the Happy Mondays? Where did they play their mega-gig to end all mega-gigs? Elland Road. Leeds. Home of the Bridewell Taxis.
In the first coming of the city on the right side of the Pennines, the Bridewell Taxis were the cool band, the local lads made good, the scruffy oiks who took music by the scruff of the neck and showed those blood Lancastrians how to do it.
Ready Steady Go says it far more eloquently than I can right here:
"Local legends the Bridewell Taxis were carrying the torch for the city at the time of the Madchester scene. Their impact and success was more remarkable than that of our current crop of leading lights because back then, in 1989, the media was no way near as powerful as it is today.
Lesser bands today are rewarded with far more media exposure than most successful bands did back in the early 90s.
Even in retrospect their legacy should be applauded. Even if they didn't conquer the world they did become the most successful band Leeds has ever produced prior to recent success of the Kaiser Chiefs. Back in the day, this band was the cool band to name drop."
A lovely bit of nostalgia here, the band's second EP and a bit of vinyl that could set you back all of £2 on eBay now, a bit of vinyl that probably cost me £3 from Big Tree Records in Huddersfield - money I should have been spending on cheap bitter. That's 3 quid I'll never see again. Unless they come again and make me a millionaire...
The Bridewell Taxis - Give in
I don't know why I'm flying the flag for Leeds, I'm from Huddersfield. We had some of the best new-wave of new-wave punk in the country; our 'Madchester' bands - and if I can find my white label HX2 12 inch then you'll hear what we had to offer (here it is!), and the Popcorn Groove, they were a band that should have made it - were just swamped.
Leeds? So much to answer for...