Sunset Hill

Introduction: Mark Kelly, writing in the Clutching At Straws remaster sleeve notes: The rest of the unreleased songs on this disc were all written after we finished touring with CAS in ‘88. We spent a number of months meeting at Pete's house to write. By this time relations between Fish and the rest of the band had become a bit strained. On the days that Fish did decide to turn up he would usually stay long enough to have a cup of coffee and tell us the music we were working on was ‘shite' and then leave. To be fair, we were as complimentary about the lyrics he showed us. In an attempt to move things along a stage further we booked into a demo studio called Tone Deaf to record demos of the material we had so far. Story from a Thin Wall, Shadow on the Barley, Sunset Hill and Tic Tac Toe were all recorded at this time.


Some of the lyrics from Sunset Hill appear in Fish’s View From The Hill, from his Vigil in a Wilderness of Mirrors album.

 ‘The squares at Waterloo’
The decisive battle of the Napoleonic wars following Napoleon’s return from exile in Elba. A large French force under Napoleon was defeated by a combined force of the British & allied army under Wellington and Prussian army on the fields outside Waterloo in present day Belgium (then the Netherlands). The British force withstood several attacks until the Prussian army eventually arrived, allowing them to break the French flanks and defeat them.


Following a French infantry attack and a British cavalry charge on French positions, the French mistook the movement of British casualties for a rout and launched their cavalry against the British. The British responded by forming squares from their battalions about four men deep, in the middle of which was the British artillery. Although vulnerable to infantry or artillery, the French brought neither to bear and the unsupported cavalry charges were repelled by the British force. However, the French forces continued to attack and the attrition would have eventually led to a French victory were it not for the Prussians arriving.

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