#687: ‘Pablo Tiene Novia’ – Custard

Back in 1990, a small indie rock group formed in Brisbane under the name of Custard Gun. After a few shows and a lineup change, the band decided to shorten their name to Custard and started recording and releasing music.

Over the next few years, the band would make a name for themselves as one of the kookiest rock groups in Australia. Not wildly outlandish, yet still self-aware enough to poke fun of themselves (namely evident in how the band called themselves Custaro for a while, due to the fact that many would misread their name), Custard made good, slick indie rock which were not only some of the most underrated, catchiest tunes in the country, but also some of the most well-written.

After some success thanks to songs like ‘Apartment‘, ‘Music Is Crap‘, and ‘Anatomically Correct‘, Custard released their fifth album, Loverama. Featuring tunes like ‘Girls Like That (Don’t Go For Guys Like Us)‘, ‘Hit Song‘, and ‘The New Matthew‘, the album was arguably one of the band’s best, but it was the bonus disc that came with it that featured the real gems.

Tucked away in first copies of the album was a bonus disc titled Custaro Music, and featured a small selection of offcuts by the group. Arguably one of the best on the disc, and of their career, was the track ‘Pablo Tiene Novia’. Written about bassist Paul Medew and his new girlfriend, the track is a short one which was clearly recorded on a lark for the group.

The track outlines Paul’s new relationship and the effects it may have on the band, including frontman’s David McCormack’s (tongue-in-cheek) fear that he may leave the group. Of course, any fears were unfounded, and Paul Medew stuck with the group… sort of. As it turned out, Custard would enter a hiatus at the end of 1999 before deciding to break up altogether.

Ten years later, the band did reform, and have since released a further two albums (finally giving me the chance to see them live, too!), showing they haven’t missed a beat after all these years.

Of course, while there are so many other brilliant David McCormack tracks that I could have picked for this post, I just can’t go past Custard’s ability to write a song about such an unimportant topic, in which they give their all musically and eventually make a song which could very easily have earned a well-deserved spot on their greatest hits retrospective. Sadly, this one often goes unremembered, so I’ll do all the hard work and remember it for all of us!

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