"You must think me very naïve," Edwyn Collins began on "Falling and Laughing," the first-ever Orange Juice single, released back in the spring of 1980. A sweet sentiment, but one that seemed out of step with the seriousness of post-punk, which trafficked in the illusion that we had all passed beyond the days of untouched innocence. Campy, delicate, sensitive and ultimately hopeful, Orange Juice was certainly a different kind of band, then and now. As Collins cried: "I only see what I want to see."
Glasgow School collects Orange Juice's earliest material for the now-legendary Scottish label Postcard Records, including the brilliant "Blue Boy" and "Simply Thrilled Honey." (For the next chapter, check out Edwyn Collins: A Casual Introduction.) The songs are raw and delightful, and they delineate an alternate vision of post-punk that grafts the form's defiant, twitchy gallop with the snaking basslines and shuffling backbeats of disco and funk. The compilation is essential for its inclusion of Ostrich Churchyard, the previously unreleased Orange Juice debut album. Despite spring-wound, head-bobbing tracks like "Satellite City" and "Wan Light," the album's heart is in the slower, woozier numbers like "In a Nutshell" or the delicate "Consolation Prize," where Collins 'weathered, heartfelt croon is on full display.