Catatonia, continuing a week of excerpts from the 1996 Reading Festival, as featured on the inimitable John Peel program over BBC Radio 1 on August 25, 1996.
Beginning life as an Indie band, Catatonia slipped into the direction of Rock and Post-Britpop in the late 1990s. Getting started in 1992, the band hit their stride (and their audience) by the time this Reading Festival appearance took place. As an Indie band, the members of Catatonia felt their music wasn’t as accessible as it could have been. So the adjustment into a more Pop genre gave the band the boost it needed. So by the time their second album, International Velvet was released in 1998, their fortunes had changed considerably.
But by the time their fourth album was being recorded, pressures and fractures within the band were starting to appear and by 2001 Catatonia called it quits, and lead singer Cerys Matthews went on to pursue a solo career with a good amount of success.
If the name sounds familiar, Cerys Matthews can now be heard on BBC 6 music and a presenter and producer, as well as taking up a role as reporter as well as Documentary filmmaker. Just goes to show you, people don’t disappear – they become other things.
This concert comes at the time their popularity is just hitting new heights – their second album was still two years off and they were busy promoting their debut album, which would be issued only weeks later, in September of that year.
But if you aren’t familiar with Catatonia, crank this one up and give it a listen – and if you aren’t familiar with Cerys Matthews, dial her in on BBC 6 Music on Sundays at 10:00 am (Cerys on 6). Great show.
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