Edinburgh does a certain kind of chalky, milky afternoon sunlight better than anywhere else I’ve seen yet. It’s a different consistency of illumination; it’s fragile, frail, it isn’t warm but it’s still warming.
Getting out and underneath this kind of light is as much a jog on my memory as smell, or taste. It’s an inverted sponge for recollection, a watery trigger. I might as well be back in the summer of mbv, 08, just inside the door of a sweltering Clock Café in Leith as Rob St.John plays a stifling set (Paper Ships), sleeping every morning well after dawn, pound pints, badly pretending that I still enjoyed clubbing, sitting in a back garden ten minutes’ walk from my house with bits of my hair lying around on the porch, baking away.
It took me a long time to realise it, but I got that summer all wrong, when things reached a level of short-lived perfection that my life hasn’t managed to see again (Camden, Roundhouse, June.), and then started to fall apart so starkly quickly that it might have been taken for a joke. I see it now, I see it as clearly as the light is meekly blinding that I was dealing in opposites, totals, and I was wilfully looking in the wrong places. It was the people that I thought were perfection that were dreadful, and the times themselves that appeared torturous that were the right, pure, whole bits.