Secret Affair: Soho Dreams

(About) time for action: Mod revivalists return, 30 years on.

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Even by pop’s standards, Secret Affair’s career was brief. In just two years they surfed the 1979 Mod Revival to chart success only to be effectively wiped out by the monochrome tsunami known as 2 Tone.

Thirty years on from third album Business As Usual, their return finds principals Ian Page and Dave Cairns with a point to prove.

Essentially a companion piece to cinematic 1979 debut Glory Boys, Soho Dreams is a tour de force, Cairn’s razor-edge riffing (In Our Time) perfectly complemented by Page’s poetic flights of fancy (Lotus Dream).

Jaw-dropping finale Soul Of The City is as sleazily grandiose as peak period Suede, but soul stompers I Don’t Need No Doctor and All The Rage will delight those who can tell a Vespa from a Lambretta at 50 paces. A bullseye.

Paul Moody is a writer whose work has appeared in the Classic Rock, NME, Time Out, Uncut, Arena and the Guardian. He is the co-author of The Search for the Perfect Pub and The Rough Pub Guide.