Had a coffee meeting today on Kings Parade. It was fine when I went in at 10am but by 12 it was a case of darkness at noon with the blackest of thunderclouds. Within seconds the sky had opened and Kings College went all gothic against the thunder and lightening. Luckily the Cambridge University Press is but yards away and I had seen a book earlier in the window that I coveted – The Social History of Dying – so that was a good excuse to duck in and buy it.

So, another July in “sunny” England. Is summer a distant memory?

Yann Tiersen – Comptine d´un Autre été: L´Aprés Midi. From the soundtrack of Amélie. A “comptine” is a nursery rhyme, from literally “another summer” which I would rather translate as “a distant summer”.

A distant summer could also be a summer long since passed.

Virginia Astley – A Summer Long Since Passed. This is the B side of a 12″ single I bought in 1983 that had “Love’s A Lonely Place To Be” on the A side. The other B side track was “It’s Too Hot To Sleep”. Some hope.

I first come across her in 1982 when the NME included her band on the “Mighty Reel” cassette tape (if I remember, you had to collect some tokens and mail in for the cassette – no cover mounted CDs in those days, younger readers!). That track was Futility, a musical setting of the poem by Wilfred Owen.

Move him into the sun –
Gently its touch awoke him once,
At home, whispering of fields unsown.
Always it woke him, even in France,
Until this morning and this snow.
If anything might rouse him now
The kind old sun will know.