A brand new crop of sessions will be here on the firstday of each month, replacing the ones before them. mr. obscure can be contacted via his old pal and cowering slave stuart Jones, at email@example.com
The Adverts were an English punk band who formed in 1976 and broke up in late 1979. They were one of the first punk bands to enjoy chart success in the UK, and their line-up included Gaye Advert, whom The Virgin Encyclopedia of 70s Music called the "first female punk star". The band was formed in 1976 by T.V. Smith and Gaye . Smith and Advert were both from Bideford, a small coastal town in Devon, and were later married. After relocating to London the two young punks recruited guitarist Pickup and drummer Driver, and the Adverts were born. The Roxy, London's first live punk venue, played a crucial role in their early career. They were one of the pioneering bands who played at the club during its first 100 days. The Advertsplayed at the club no less than nine times between January and April 1977. In January, after their first gig supporting Generation X, they impressed Michael Dempsey so much that he became their manager. Their second gig supporting Slaughter & the Dogs was recorded, and their anthem "Bored Teenagers" was included on the UK Top 30 album The Roxy London WC2.
In February, shortly after the group's third gig supporting The Damned, they signed a recording contract with Stiff Records. In March, they supported The Jam at the Roxy. In April their debut single, "One Chord Wonders", was released. The Adverts were a prolific live act. Their first nationwide tour was with Stiff label-mates the Damned. The tour poster read, "The Adverts know one chord, the Damned know three. See all four at…" Later they would support Iggy Pop on tour, as well as conducting their own headlining tours in Britain, Ireland and Europe. In August, the band released the first of their two UK Top 40 hit singles. Lyrically, "Gary Gilmore's Eyes" was a controversial song based on the wishes of Gary Gilmore, an American murderer, that his eyes be donated to medical science after his execution. Sounds described it as "the sickest and cleverest record to come out of the new wave". Years later, it was included in Mojo magazine’s list of the best punk rock singles of all time. After the tabloid-fuelled controversy surrounding the single, and an appearance on Top of the Pops, the Adverts became big news. Observers focused on frontman T.V. Smith and bassist Gaye Advert. Reviewers noted T.V. Smith's song-writing ability. He was said to have "captured the spirit of the times few contemporaries could match". Another reviewer described Smith as the band’s "raging heart, spitting out the failsafe succession of songs which still delineate punk’s hopes, aspirations and, ultimately, regrets." In contrast, Gaye
Advert's reputation was more fleeting. She was "one of Punk’s first female icons". Her "photogenic" looks, "panda-eye make-up and omnipresent leather jacket defined the face of female punkdom until well into the next decade". The band’s follow-up single, "Safety in Numbers", did not chart. A fourth single, "No Time To Be 21", scraped into the UK Top 40. A month later, their debut albumCrossing The Red Sea was released, and has become one of the most highly regarded albums of the punk era, with Dave Thompson calling it "a devastating debut, one of the finest albums not only of the punk era, but of the 1970s as a whole", Trouser Press calling it "the equal of the first Sex Pistols or Clash LP, a hasty statement that captures an exciting time", and several other writers including it in lists of all-time greatest albums. Despite releasing some more well-regarded singles, the Adverts were not able to maintain the momentum and their career stalled after the release of their second album. The band members at the time were also threatened with lawsuits by former members Rod Latter and Howard Pickup, who objected to the band continuing to use the Adverts
name without them. They split up shortly after the accidental death by electrocution of their manager, Michael Dempsey. Their last gig was at Slough College on 27 October 1979. After the band split up, T.V. Smith continued with Tim Cross as T.V. Smith's Explorers, then Cheap, and finally from the 1990s to date performing as a solo artist. In regard to their legacy, critic and author Dave Thompson argues that "nobody would make music like the Adverts and nobody ever has. In terms of lyric, delivery, commitment and courage, they were, and they remain, the finest British group of the late 1970s". Former members now deceased include Tim Cross (died 9 July 2012), and Howard Pickup (died 11 July 1997). here's the third of four sessions they recorded for Peel,
committed to tape on 21/08/1978.
Marc and the Mambas marked the start of Marc Almond's career outside of Soft Cell. In 1983 Almond and Soft Cell were very close to the avant-garde scene around Foetus, Psychic TV and Einstürzende Neubauten. Almond also took part as one of four members of The Immaculate Consumptive, a group initiated by Lydia Lunch; they never released any album but did a few shows in New York and Washington D.C. at the end of 1983. Further members were Jim Foetus and Nick Cave. Marc and the Mambas very much belonged to that scene, and continued the dark themes explored within Soft Cell, but musically used different instruments and more complex rhythms. The group's lineup was fluid, with members changing with each recording or performance; the only consistent members were Almond, Annie Hogan and Steve James Sherlock. Further members included Billy McGee and Martin McCarrick,who also later joined Almond when he formed Marc Almond and the Willing Sinners. Almond's Soft Cell partner David Ball was an associated member for the Mambas' first single "Sleaze", and Matt Johnson from The The was a member for the first and second album but did not join for the last concerts in 1983 (put to vinyl and later to CD as Black, Bite & Blues). Jim Foetus was an associated member, and did guest vocals and percussion on "A Million Manias" and "Love Among the Ruined." The Mambas' second Some Bizzare released album, Torment and Toreros, contains a mix of ballads, both with and without dance beats, and is a mix of vaudeville, French chanson, and goth sensibility, using guitar noise, piano, and string sections. Almond later described this recording as an "attempted suicide put on vinyl." the one and only session appearance for mr. ravencroft by the mambas occurred on 01/02/1983. now you can have it, for free!
The Meteors are an English psychobilly band formed in 1980. Originally from London, England, they are often credited with giving the psychobilly subgenre—which fuses punk rock with rockabilly—its distinctive sound and style. Though the origins of psychobilly are debated, They are the first band to self-identify as psychobilly, and are often credited with the distinction of being the only "pure" psychobilly band among fans of the subgenre. The Meteors were started in 1980 by P. Paul Fenech (guitar and vocals), Nigel Lewis (upright bass/electric bass) and vocals), and Mark Robertson (drums). This is considered as the definitive line-up by some fans. Fenech and Lewis had played in rockabilly bands before, but left their former band, Raw Deal, in order to experiment with a new sound that mixed horror and science fiction lyrics with a punk rock / rockabilly crossover (as distinct from the slower, psychedelic rockabilly sound of the Cramps.
This is the first of four sessions for the avuncular peel, put down on 16/06/1981.
The Pop Group are an English band formed in Bristol in 1977 by vocalist Mark Stewart, guitarist John Waddington, bassist Simon Underwood, guitarist/saxophonist Gareth Sager, and drummer Bruce Smith. Their work in the late 1970s crossed diverse musical influences including funk, free jazz and dub with radical politics and the avant-garde, helping to pioneer post-punk music. The group released two albums, Y (1979) and For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder? (1980), and the singles "She Is Beyond Good and Evil" (1979) and "We Are All Prostitutes" (1979), before breaking up in 1981. Its members would go on to work on a variety of subsequent projects, including New Age Steppers and Rip Rig + Panic. In 2010, the band reunited, touring and releasing new material. their one and only peel session was preserved on 03/07/1978. here it is.
The Skids were a Scottish punk rock and new wave band, formed in Dunfermline, Fife in 1977 by Stuart Adamson (guitar, keyboards, percussion and backing vocals), William Simpson (bass guitar and backing vocals), Thomas Kellichan (drums) and Richard Jobson (vocals, guitar and keyboards). Their biggest success was with the 1979 single "Into the Valley". four studio albums and eleven singles were issued between 1978 and 1981. Soon after the release and live concert tour of The Absolute Game two members left the band - one of these was Stuart Adamson, who went on to launch his new band, Big Country. This left Richard Jobson and Russell Webb (ex-Zones) to write and record the band's fourth and final album Joy, which Russell Webb also produced. The pair played multiple instruments on the album, and also invited a collection of musical friends to
perform on various tracks with them. Skids dissolved in 1982, with the compilation Fanfare posthumously issued by Virgin. It was a mixture of most of the band's singles and some B-sides, though omitted any tracks from the Joy period. Jobson and Webb went on to form a new band called The Armoury Show. The group recorded just one album, Waiting for the Floods in 1985 before splitting up. Jobson went on to pursue a solo career as a poet, songwriter, television presenter and most recently as a film director. He released albums on the Belgian record label Les Disques du Crepuscule and the UK's own Parlophone Records. Webb proposed a solo career and, according to an Armoury Show fan page, later joined Public Image Ltd. in 1992 (but played only on their last tour), and is now a videogame designer. here's their third session for john, taped on 19/02/1979.
The American singer-songwriter and guitarist Tim Buckley's music and style changed considerably through the years; he began his career based in folk music but his subsequent albums experimented with jazz, psychedelia, funk, soul, the avant-garde and an evolving "voice as instrument" sound. Though he did not find commercial success during his lifetime, Buckley is admired by later generations for his innovation as a musician and his vocal ability. He died at the age of 28 from a heroin overdose, leaving behind his sons Taylor and Jeff Buckley, the latter of whom went on to become a musician as well. There were nine albums between 1966 and 1974. Here's a rare Top gear appearance for Peel, immortalised on 01/04/1968.
The English rock guitarist, keyboardist, vocalist and songwriter Sean Tyla, sometimes known as the “Godfather of Boogie”, is best known for his work with Ducks Deluxe and the Tyla Gang. he's also played with Help Yourself, Joan Jett, and Deke Leonard and appeared solo. He initially toured with Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band but made his first record "Miracles" with Third World (not the reggae group) which was released on CBS in 1970. In 1971 Tyla became a roadie with Help Yourself, playing on their
Sounds of the Seventies broadcast and co-writing "American Mother" on their Beware the Shadow album. He also recorded part of their fifth album, recorded in 1973, but the LP was shelved until it was finally completed and released as 5 in 2004. In February 1972 Tyla formed Ducks Deluxe, initially with Help Yourself’s bassist Ken Whaley, guitarist Martin Belmont and percussionist Michael Cousins. Cousins was replaced by drummer Tim Roper and Nick Garvey also joined. Ducks Deluxe were one of the founding acts
of the Pub rock circuit, with more energetic performances than many other acts. They recorded three albums, one Old Grey Whistle Test (UK TV) and two Peel Sessions. Ducks Deluxe split in 1975. Following the breakup Sean Tyla formed the Tyla Gang, initially with guitarist Bruce Irvine, bassist Brian "Kid" Turrington and drummer Mike Desmarais, these last two having played together in The Winkies. Their first single "Styrofoam" / "Texas Chainsaw Massacre Boogie" (1976) was the fourth record released on Stiff Records,
although the single was a one off deal with Stiff, not a long term contract. Tyla also produced Stiff's eighth single Plummet Airlines’ "Silver Shirt." Although unsigned, the Gang attracted critical attention. They eventually signed a contract with the Californinan based Beserkley label in 1977 and released their first album, Yachtless in 1978, which received very good reviews, but no chart success. Partway through recording their next LP Moonproof, Turrington left and Whaley joined to finish the album. Richard Treece, another former member of Help Yourself also joined, before Beserkley's UK operation went bankrupt in 1979 and Tyla disbanded the Gang shortly after. In 2010 the Tyla Gang reformed in their original line-up, touring Sweden during the fall. In 2013, they added John McCoy of Gillan and Mammoth fame to replace original member Brian Turrington, who had taken a leave of absence for personal reasons. The Gang have released two albums since their reformation, 2010's Rewired, a compilation of lost studio and live recordings and as of 2013, a new studio album, Stereo Tactics. i'm giving you the third and final Tyla gang session for Peel. It was recorded on 09/08/1978.
The list of band names below is purely for illustrative purposes - I don't pretend to have sessions by all these people - but I do have a frightening amount of them.