25 Smash Hits from the vaults of Fortuna POP! including tracks by Bearsuit, Comet Gain, The Lucksmiths, The Loves, Sodastream, Fanfarlo, The Butterflies Of Love, Airport Girl, Milky Wimpshake, The Aislers Set, Cannonball Jane and many more! All for fiver!
When some loud braggart tries to put me down
And says his school is great
I tell him right away
Now what's the matter buddy?
Ain't you heard of my school?
It's number one in the state
“Be True To Your School” is a compilation of the label’s finest moments to date. There are too many great tracks to go into detail (read the booklet instead for the whole sorry story) but it kicks off with the lo-fi hip-hop instrumental of Discordia, erstwhile Melody Maker Single of the Week, followed by the Sonic Youth-meets-Blur blast of Finlay. Next is Tender Trap, led by the indiepop legend Amelia Fletcher (cf Los Campesinos), followed by Australian modern-folk duo Sodastream, here in unusually upbeat full band form. There’s the drunk school orchestra madness of the ever inventive Bearsuit, the sassy hip-hop sampling latina pop of Cannonball Jane, the Pulp-meets-Studio 54 swirl of The Chemistry Experiment, and the bubblegum 60s pop of The Loves from their Sunday Times Album of the Week, followed by tompaulin spin-off micktravis with local nightclub singer Garfield Grieve on lead vocals. Glen Campbell eat your heart out. Then there’s the incredible “Rob A Bank” by Connecticut’s The Butterflies Of Love, a song that prompted John Peel to applaud on air, the MBV guitars of Spraydog, a Lulu cover courtesy of riot girls International Strike Force, the completely mad and joyous Pixies pop of Twinkie and the fabulous orchestral pop of the hotly tipped Fanfarlo. Nearly at the end now. There’s jangly international indiepop heroes The Lucksmiths, the comic “genius” (you decide) of MJ Hibbett, the lo-fi New York punk of Taking Pictures (Fortuna POP!’s first ever release), Airport Girl’s stream of consciousness Americana, Mogul’s trashy synth pop and Milky Wimpshake’s peerless punk pop. Finally there’s San Francisco’s The Aislers Set with a track from their Times Album of the Week, the quintessentially English Would-Be-Goods ex of él records, the indiepop classic that is “You Can Hide Your Love Forever” by Comet Gain, and bringing it all to a close, the gentle elephant 6 pop of Homescience.
It’s all here. Be true to your school.
"An amazing roster... dive straight in to these nuggets of pop perfection and appreciate the label for all it’s done for us."
(Drowned In Sound)
“The Fortuna POP! and Track and Field labels have given me more musical pleasure than just about any other labels in the past decade and the POP! legacy is laid out here to see. One for the year-end best ofs, I think.”
“A mixture of the sublime and the ridiculous, of bedroom pop glory (from both the guitars and samplers divisions), DIY sonic wreckage, classic songwriting and cackhanded tomfoolery.”
(Fire Escape Talking)
"As befits any indie label worth its salt, there’s often an almost wilful stylistic schizophrenia to the catalogue, which reflects the taste of its founders as much as its audience. And that’s how it should be; the sleevenotes themselves are enlightenment enough on that one. Credit crunch be damned: music is (almost) its own reward – if you’re true to it."