MEGA CITY FOUR "Sebastopol Rd."
What was the absolute best record of 1992? No, it wasn't Nevermind. It wasn't Matthew Sweet's Girlfriend. Besides both of those were technically released in 1991 anyway, so I was tricking you. Ahem. No, the absolute best record was Sebastopol Rd. by the very underrated Mega City Four. They precursored emo. They implemented gorgeous melodies and cranky guitars. The songs were so, so pop and perfect. And no one knew who they were. At least not in the States. They weren't just one of those trendy new Britpop bands. They possessed so much more than that.
It was with shock and sadness that upon my return from vacation, I found out that lead singer Wiz, had died recently, at age 44. Upon reading the news, I immediately dashed for Sebastopol Rd., and even though the early 90s production can sometimes be distracting, it holds up, it really does. I feel that I'm not nearly being as sentimental right now as I could be. By track four, I was fighting off the emotion. On "Peripheral", listening to Wiz screech out the words: "I'm not the brightest star and any given moment", I nearly collapsed to the ground crying. I had to remember how important this record was for me. How it jumpstarted my 20s.
We all know records that for one reason or another, we can't understand why it wasn't the absolute biggest record in the world. This is the one for me, it shattered any illusions I had about the record business and probably squarely defines my failure as an A&R guy. Please take a moment to investigate Mega City Four's classic 1992 LP. R.I.P. Wiz, your vision was truly appreciated and more importantly is celebrated more than you'll know. "It hurts so much to lose another friend."
SCARED OF CATS