Released 30 July 1997
01. Losing my Hair
2. Tomorrow’s Gone (5.36)
3. Petrol Cigarette(2.34)
4. When Everyone Speaks English, The World Will Explode (6.02)
5. Homesick Satellites (2.33)
6. TV (3.07)
7. The Unemployable Rub Oil on Her Coffin (2.20)
8. Grandma Begs To Be 18 Again (2.33)
9. It’s Alright Dad, Isn’t It (2.35)
10.Lead Cloud (2.33)
11.Cheap Astronaut (5.14)
12.Metal Waterpistol (3.04)
Total Playing Length: 41.54 min.
UK CD: BABY BIRD CD5
1000 copies on CD
Label:Baby Bird Recordings
"THE MOST UNRELENTINGLY, FORLORNLY BEAUTIFUL OF ALL HIS COMPILATIONS" (UNCUT)
"THE LOVELIEST LP BABYBIRD HAVE MADE, AND PROBABLY WILL EVER MAKE...A BEAUTIFUL RECORD" (MELODY MAKER)
"THE MOST MATURE AND THE MOST LIKEABLE OF HIS ALBUMS" (THE INDEPENDENT)
These songs were written in chosen isolation.
If someone else had been in the room,
the freedom to experiment would never have been there.
This is the fifth in the series of baby bird recordings
The Fifth release in the Baby Bird recordings series
It was originally a limited edition release, but is now available as part of the 2002 CD box set The Original Lo-Fi.
The release was held up because of the sudden succes of Ypou’re Gorgeous.
Until The Black Album came out in 2002, this was the only solo album to be released after Ugly Beautiful.
Often refered to as a kind of ‘best of the rest’.
The piano part from The Unemployable Rub Oil on Her Coffin found on Dying Happy was reused on the track 102 year old Jack… found on Plastic Tablets 2002.
In 2000 Stephen told that Dying Happy was his favourite Baby Bird album (along with Bugged)
“Dying Happy contains very personal, very delicate washes of sound and piano chords picking out vague melodies. Halfway between songs and instrumentals, some of the tracks on Dying Happy just don’t work at all, but some of them are riveting” Sunday Times
“At times, you’ll find beauty here – there are some intimate, bizarrely melodic interludes [...] but in the main there’s only genuine disappointment: muffled afterthoughts and amateurish detours. This is a collection of moods, not songs, and fittingly for an album about death, the atmosphere throughout is bleak [...]. As such, the myth about Steven Jones must finally be dismantled. His is a triumph of quantity over quality, ugliness over beauty and noise over melody. Bid him farewell. Another seven years in isolation beckon”. NME
The emphasis instead is on late night, deep blue moods, with roots in everything from Massive Attack to electronic Krautrock. Allmusic
FOUR BOYS WALK INTO A PLAYGROUND LIKE SOME FILM THEY’VE SEEN. THEY HAVE CIGARETTES AND SMART CARDS IN STOLEN WALLETS. THE GIRLS ON THE SEESAW ARE SCOTTISH, IRISH OR CZECHOSLOVAKIAN: YOU CAN’T TELL THEY’RE SO FAR AWAY.
OLDER BOY, WHO GOT NOTHING FOR CHRISTMAS, GO TO THE FAR CORNER NEAR THE ROAD, WITH LIGHTER FUEL IN METAL WATERPISTOLS, THEY POOL THEIR MARLBOROS AND BALANCE THEM UPEND ON THE RAILINGS. THEY SHOOT OFF THE ONES THE WIND HASN’T BLOWN OFF. WITH EMPTY GUNS THEY PICK UP THE CIGARETTES AND PLAY PETROL CIGARETTE ROULETTE. THEY PUT THEM BETWEEN THEIR LIPS AND LIGHT THEM WITH BLINDFOLDS AND GLOVES ON.
FRIDAY FIVE THIRTY. IT’S A GOOD DAY FOR ENGLAND. IT’S SUMMER AND THE SKY IS FLAT LIKE COWDUNG. THE FOUR YOUNGER BOYS WORK IN THE GLUE FACTORY. CLAMPING THE SOFT METAL AND CRIMPING IT OVER. THE YOUNGER BOYS WANT TO BE OLDER. THE OLDER BOYS WANT TO BE WITH THE GIRLS. AND THE GIRLS ARE HAPPY WHERE THEY ARE.
THE YOUNGER BOYS APPLIED TO BE ASTRONAUTS FIVE YEARS AGO. THEY FOUND THE ADVERT IN THE FINANCIAL TIMES LYING ON A TRAMP. THEY LEFT A FORWARDING ADDRESS: ‘BROWN’S PLAYGROUND’, AND STILL HADN’T HEARD A THING. THEY SIT ON CONCRETE BENCH BACKS ON THE EDGE OF DOG SHIT RECTANCLE, WHERE POSTS USED TO BE. JOHN HANDS OUT PLASTIC BAGS. THEY FLICK A COIN FOR WHO’LL BE ARMSTRONG, JACK GETS FIVE HEADS IN A ROW, AND GETS THE SEE-THRU’ FREEZERBAG. THE OTHERS GET RED DIXONS, A GREEN SAFEWAY AND A PASTELSTRIPE NO-BRAND CARRIER. THEY PULL THEM OVER THEIR HEADS AND TUCK THE HANDLES INTO THEIR HOODS, JACK GETS UP, HIS BREATH ALL OVER THE INSIDE. HIS FACE HAS GONE DOUBLE AND HE CAN’T HEAR THE GIRLS AT ALL NOW. HE WALKS OFF, DOUBLE MOON SPEED, LIKE A BAD GULFER LOOKING FOR A BALL IN A TREE. THE OTHER BOYS FALL FLATOUT ON THEIR BACKS. THEIR MOTHERS ARE WAITING WITH SUPPERS BURNT, BUT THE BOYS ARE ON THE MOON WITH NO WAY BACK