Essex underground legend Scott Lavene has a new album called Milk City Sweethearts coming out in September, and today he shares another delightful single from it called “The First Time”. He says:
“The First Time is an alternative disco song about death, all the life that comes before it. It’s about acknowledging the details of existence and not forgetting that one day you won’t be able to anything other than lie down and slowly stop breathing.”
As someone who spent a lot of their youth using illicit substances, only to find himself creatively rejuvenated upon going clean, it’s not surprising that Scott Lavene reflects on many unfortunate and awkward firsts – but he brings both a levity and a wisdom to it. Over dynamic guitars and an insistent rhythm, his characterful voice runs the gamut of memories, some of which we can all relate to (“the first beer / the first time I realised daydreams are better than real life”), plenty of drugs (“the first pill, the first spliff, the first gram of whizz, the first tab of acid / the first time I realised that I was just a fleck of dust in an infinite universe / the first come down”), and then the downright unhealthy, which hopefully fewer of us can relate to (“the first time I woke up in a cell / the first time I woke up on a roundabout, or in a bush, or in a public toilet”). Just in case we get the wrong idea and think “The First Time” is a celebration, Lavene guides the song into a spooky and sobering chorus where he simply states “there’s a first time for everything / one day there’ll be a last.” Although, there is a happy ending with the first time he sees his child’s face… and then there’s his admission of eating rabbit shit.
A song that re-establishes Lavene’s individuality and history, while presenting it in a danceable, laughable and yet stoic manner, “The First Time” is a trojan horse, worming its way into your mind with its groove and humour, but leaves you reconsidering those questionable decisions in your life.
Watch the video for “The First Time” below or find it on streaming platforms.