Paper Monitor: Popping out of a job

Tom Watson

Want to check out a groovy new beat combo? Forget the rock critics, ask an MP.

As they took to the stage at the Glastonbury festival, the hitherto obscure Lake District-based two-piece blues-rock band Drenge will no doubt have hoped to attract press attention.

It's unlikely they anticipated it would come from political correspondents rather than music critics, however.

In a bizarre coda to his departure as Labour's election co-ordinator, MP Tom Watson advised leader Ed Miliband in a resignation letter that "if you want to see an awesome band, I recommend Drenge".

It makes a change from the usual talk of wanting to spend more time with one's family.

The reference obliges nonplussed newsdesks to explain exactly who or what Drenge might be.

According to Will Hodgkinson of The Times, the band were "almost unknown outside student circles" prior to their recent appearance in Somerset.

The Guardian dutifully informs its readers that Drenge "have enjoyed underground acclaim with tracks like I Wanna Break You In Half and People In Love Make Me Feel Yuck".

Michael Deacon of the Daily Telegraph notes that the band's name (Danish for "boys", apparently) sounds "like the name of an obscure but weirdly important parliamentary seat (Drenge West? Drenge Central? Drenge-on-Trent?)".

In the interests of furthering his understanding of the politician's psyche, Deacon says he listened to their music online. His verdict? "I can now confirm that I have no plans to hire Mr Watson as an adviser."

And Drenge's reaction? So far they have not spoken publicly about their place in Watson's affections, though a clue may be found in a tweet sent from the band's account as the resignation letter story broke: "I PUSH MY FINGERS INTO MY EYES."

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