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 Carpettes are a punk rock band from Houghton-le-Spring, Tyne and Wear, England, formed in 1977 by Neil Thompson (vocals, guitar), George Maddison (bass), and Kevin Heard (drums) (all three had played together since 1974 in Brown Sugar) Their first release was the Radio Wunderbar EP, released on the Walthamstow-based indie label Small Wonder. The band named their follow-up single "Small Wonder" in the label's honour. between their two peel sessions, Kevin Heard was replaced by former Young Bucks drummer Tim Wilder. In 1979 they signed to Beggars Banquet Records, who issued their debut album, Frustration Paradise, towards the end of that year. A second album followed in 1980 with a final single released in December that year before the band split up in June 1981. They reunited in 1996 to perform at the first Holidays in the Sun festival, with Thompson and Maddison joined by Thompson's brother Paul. This led to a permanent reunion and the release of a new album in 2002, Fair Play to 'Em. In 2005 Neil Thompson left and was replaced with Jimmy Devlin, a member of the Glasgow based Just Another Dream. A final album was recorded featuring Paul Thompson playing drums on several tracks and another Glaswegian, Jim Cosgrove on the rest of the album. This was released on the Texas based NDN Record label, followed by a tour of Germany. In 2009 George and Jimmy collaborated to record three new Carpettes songs, "When I`m Gone", "The Only Way to Be" and a cover of the Tom Waits song "Hold On" which were made available online. In the Summer of 2011 The Carpettes toured The USA for the first time supported by Houston based band The Shadow, led by Henrik Poulsen. With George on bass, Jimmy on guitar and Nick Raver, from Texas, on drums they covered 4000 miles and did 12 shows in Houston, Austin, San Antonio, El Paso, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Siego and Phoenix. here's their magnificent second peel session (they taped two in all), put down on 13/12/1978.
Moose were a British indie rock band who formed in London in 1990. The original line-up included Russell Yates (guitar, vocals), K.J. “Moose” McKillop (guitar), Damien Warburton (drums), and Jeremy Tishler (bass). After Warburton and Tishler left the band they were replaced with Lincoln Fong (bass), his brother Russell (guitar), and Richard Thomas (drums). Other members have included Mig Moorland (drums) and Mick Conroy (keyboards). Moose released two EPs on Hut Records. Within the next few years the band would release two full-length albums on Play It Again Sam. Despite a strong critical response, Moose’s albums continued to sell few copies. Following the release of their third album, Live a Little Love a Lot, Moose took an extended break from music only to return five years later with the release of High Ball Me! the bulk of which had been recorded in 1996 and 1997, (with one song, "There's a Place," dating from 1993), but sat unreleased as the band members decided whether or not to continue. "This River Will Never Run Dry" has been featured on the Britpop collection The Brit Box. there were two moose sessions for uncle john. here's the second, taped on 17/12/1991. one track, a cover of wire's famous 12XU, is missing, i'm afraid. vast apologies. if you have it, please send it to me.
mysterious, curiously angular uk post-punks out on blue six were formed in late 1980 by Mike Daly (Drums), Carl Marsh (Guitar), Kate Sekules (Vocals), Geoff Wooley (Piano, Synth, Percussion), Nigel Holland (Bass, Vocals, Percussion, Guitar). they issued four tracks on two compilation albums (Moonlight Club, London) and at least two now highly collectible singles. Carl Marsh went on to form Shriekback with Barry Andrews of XTC. Bassist Nigel Holland now writes film music. i'm giving you their first session (there was just the two), recorded on 09/09/1980.
This one-off recording by an aggregation labelled 'The Top Gear Carol Singers' featured a group of musicians commonly associated with Peel's Top Gear show, augmented by JP and Sheila ('Peel and The Pig'). Sheila recounted the event thus: "Top Gear was the venue for some inspired one-offs well loved by listeners, such as the 1970 Christmas Carol Concert, at which all the usual suspects - the Faces, Marc Bolan, Ivor Cutler, Sonja Kristina (of Curved Air), John Walters, Robert Wyatt, and myself - squeezed into the studio to contribute our own idiosyncratic versions of 'Silent Night', 'Away In A Manger' and 'Good King Wenceslas.' David Bedford (piano), and the vocalists Marc Bolan, June Child, Ivor Cutler, Sonja Kristina (& friend), Rod Stewart, Robert Wyatt, Mike Ratledge, Ron Wood, Ronnie Lane, Kenney Jones, and Ian McLagan." Walters is listed by Ken Garner as being producer (although Sheila's comment leads one to deduce he sang as well), and the majority of the carols are played on an electronic organ, presumably again by Bedford. 'Away In A Manger' was sung by Stewart solo (although John Walters later recalled that he was not keen to do this), backed by Bedford on the piano: 'Silent Night' was sung by Kristina solo, with the choir humming along: and 'Good King Wenceslas' featured solo lines by Lane and Wyatt. it was recorded on 12/08/1970 and first broadcast on the 26th December 1970. then it was repeated on the 22nd of December 1971 and then on the 26th December 1974.
Trixie's Big Red Motorbike were an indie bubblegum pop band formed on the Isle of Wight, United Kingdom, in 1981. telephone technician Mark Litten and his sixth-former sister Melanie began performing cover versions of songs by The Undertones and the Marine Girls. At this time they were known as Pocket Money. These early recordings are now lost. Their first original song was "Invisible Boyfriend", and this became their first single under the name Trixie's Big Red Motorbike. This was recorded at "Trixieland"- a box-room in their house on the Isle of Wight. The recording equipment was very primitive, and the single was one of the first "lo-fi" releases in the UK. Only 100 copies were pressed, and the record came with photocopied sleeves and no labels. A copy was sent to Peel who played it on his show and invited the band to record a session, recorded in july. Their second release was the EP Five Songs, recorded in Portsmouth. 500 copies were pressed. By this time TBRM had become friendly with Jane Fox of the Marine Girls, and she was invited to join them for their second Peel session, recorded in August 1983. She also joined them for a recording session at Rod Gammons Sound Studio on the Isle of Wight. At this session three songs were recorded: "That's the End of That", which was released as a 7" flexidisc,"Norman and Narcissus" and "In Timbuktu". Their next single release was "Norman and Narcissus" (Lobby Lud Records). This was the band's first and only entry in the UK Indie Chart, peaking at number 29. In 1984 a compilation album of Isle of Wight bands was released. TBRM contributed two tracks: "When He's by my Side" and "Fairytales". These were the last studio recordings by the band. In 1986 a compilation cassette of various indie bands was released by In Der Tat, a German record company. TBRM contributed two tracks: "That's Quite a Lot" and "I'm Gonna Ride Away", both recorded at Trixieland. Around this time Melanie moved off of the Isle of Wight, and TBRM disbanded. Mark contributed one song "Once I've Seen Him", and played guitars on an EP by Sarah Goes Shopping, a band formed by Twa Toots leader Sarah Brown. The TBRM song "That's the End of That" was covered by the New York band The Poconos. A vinyl compilation was released by Accident Records in 1995 followed belatedly by a retrospective album released on Lobby Lud Records in February 2012. here's a nice yuletide gift for you - their second session for the great broadcaster, taped on 17/08/1983.
UK indie-moppets the Wolfhounds were formed in Romford, Havering, England in 1985 by Dave Callahan, Paul Clark, Andy Golding, Andy Bolton and Frank Stebbing and signed to the Pink label in 1986. Their first EP Cut The Cake was well enough received for the NME to include them on their C86 compilation album. After three singles and debut album Unseen Ripples From A Pebble (on Pink), they briefly moved to Idea Records for the Me single, then rejoined Pink's boss at his new label September Records. September soon evolved into Midnight Music which was the Wolfhounds' home for all subsequent releases. With original members Bolton and Clark replaced by David Oliver and Matt Deighton, the sound developed into a denser, less poppy creature. After a compilation of earlier material, second album proper Bright and Guilty was released in 1989. further albums such as Blown Away (also 1989) and Attitude (1990) found them in Sonic Youth territory, interspersing raging guitars with elegant compositional exercises. The latter title proved to be the final Wolfhounds release, the band splitting in early 1990. Golding and Stebbing formed Crawl, while Callahan hooked up with former Ultra Vivid Scene member Margaret Fiedler in Moonshake. Matt Deighton formed Mother Earth. The Wolfhounds got back together in 2005 for a gig to mark the 20th anniversary of the release of their first single in 1985. In 2006 they were asked by Bob Stanley of St Etienne to play at the ICA in London, alongside Roddy Frame and Phil Wilson, to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the seminal NME cassette C86. They have continued to play live since, re-energised when The Membranes asked them to be special guests at The Lexington in London, and in March 2012 played with Laetitia Sadier from Stereolab in support at a benefit to raise funds for proposed Frank Sidebottom memorial statue. An EP called EP001 was released on Vollwert-Records Berlin in April 2012 containing three songs that pre-date the band's first single but that were never recorded satisfactorily at the time. Of these songs, 'Skullface' has picked up a lot of radio play. They continue to write, record and play live to this day. here's their second peel session (they recorded two, in all). it was immortalised on 26/05/1987.
the legendary Young Marble Giants were a unique post-punk band formed in Cardiff, Wales in 1978. these much-missed masters of dark, minimalist DIY were formed from the ashes of True Wheel which included friends Matthew Davis and Louise Porter (later signed to EMI.) Stuart Moxham wrote the majority of the screamingly wonderful songs, and his writing was often deceptively economic, giving the YMG's classic work a fragile yet powerful quality. Their sound was characterised by Phil's prominent bass lines, Stuart's rhythm guitar (a mapleglo Rickenbacker 425) and Galanti electric organ lines and Statton's tentative vocals. Stuart Moxham's girlfriend Wendy Smith lent Stuart the money to buy the Rickenbacker. Smith, an art student in Cardiff (and later in Nottingham) at the time the YMG's were forming, photographed the band's US tour and also designed cover art for several singles and albums by Weekend and The Gist, Stuart Moxham's later project. Very early in their existence, there was a fourth member of the band, Peter Joyce, who was a cousin of the Moxham brothers. Joyce was a telephone engineer and an electronics whizz, who had made his own synthesiser from a kit. This was a small touch-sensitive keyboard with an attache case-like box of circuitry, with several knobs and dials. It made sounds similar to Eno's synths in the early Roxy Music and Kraftwerk, who employed similar 'low-tech/high-tech' electronics. The YMGs used tape recordings of Peter's home-made drum machine (Roland didn't release the Boss DR-55, the first fully programmable drum machine, until 1979), since they had no desire to have a drummer. They were also interested in (by today's standards primitive) state of the art effects devices such as ring modulators and reverb units, with the emphasis always on simplicity. Their first vinyl release was on the compilation LP Is The War Over? on Cardiff DIY label, Z Block Records, in October 1979. While signed to UK independent record label, Rough Trade Records the YMGs released two EPs, Final Day and Testcard, and one hugely acclaimed and massively influential album, Colossal Youth (a reference to the Early Greek 'Kouroi' marble statues, from which they took the inspiration for their name.) to read my own review of this jaw-droppingly splendid work, go to http://www.punkbrighton.co.uk/sjnr04.html. YMG toured and played in the US and Europe, and played in San Francisco, Vancouver, New York, Berlin. Touring companions included Cabaret Voltaire. After this astounding little group tragically split up in 1980, Stuart Moxham formed The Gist, whose song 'Love at First Sight' became a major hit on the continent when covered by French pop singer Étienne Daho under the title 'Paris, Le Flore'. Following a severe motorbike accident Stuart concentrated on home recording, which bore fruit in the album Embrace The Herd, (1982) again on Rough Trade, and his first CD album "Signal Path" (1992) on the Chicago-based Feel Good All Over label, before fans persuaded him to enter the studio again. The result was the album 'Random Rules' (1993), which featured friends old and new, such as Spike (guitar & viola), younger brother Andrew (drums) and London-based French songwriter Louis Philippe (keys & arrangements). A band was formed to perform Stuart's new material, which gigged, albeit briefly, in France and the UK. Another album, 'Cars in the Grass', followed. Stuart had also been recording in the USA (the album 'Fine Tuning' and six tracks on the album "Barbara Manning Sings With The Original Artists"(1993) where he has acquired a small but devoted fanbase. Now based in the West Country, Stuart is still writing songs faithful to the deceptively refined ethos of his first band. A new album, 'The Huddle House', recorded as a duet with Louis Philippe, with whom he's regularly performed over the last five years, was released on Wonder Records in May 2007. Alison Statton, Spike, (a guitarist from South Wales), and Simon Emmerson (later of Working Week and Afro Celt Sound System) formed Weekend (with Phil Moxham on bass) and several respected jazz musicians. In 1989 – 1990, Alison Statton worked with Ian Devine, the former guitarist of the post-punk group Ludus. They released two records together, The Prince of Wales and Cardiffians. Philip Moxham went on to play bass for The Communards and Everything But The Girl. He features on their fourth album, Idlewild. Philip also worked with David Thomas and the Pedestrians. In early 2003, Statton and the Moxham brothers reunited for a BBC Radio Wales radio special. They performed one new song, "Alright," on this special. There was a 'reunion concert' in Hay-on-Wye on 27 May 2007, part of the Hay-on-Wye Festival, 2007. They also played a show for the BB-Mix Festival in Boulogne Billancourt, just outside Paris, on 28 October 2007. The band has performed regularly since then, including appearances at the Primavera Sounds Festival in May 2008 and at the Hebbel Am Ufer (HAU) theatre in Berlin in January 2009. The YMGs played their entire Colossal Youth album at All Tomorrow's Parties in Minehead, Somerset, UK, on 9 May 200. their one and only peel session - a classic! - was recorded on 18/07/1980. here it is.
As a special christmas present to you all, here, also, just for this month, is a 14 track live recording of a 1981 gig by fabulous post-punk popsters Girls at Our Best! they were founded in Leeds, England in 1979 under the name The Butterflies, who had several UK Indie Chart hits. The group initially consisted of vocalist Judy Evans, guitarist James Alan, bassist Gerard Swift, and drummer Chris Oldroyd. The band took its new name from a line in their track "Warm Girls", which first appeared on their self-financed 1980 debut single coupled with "Getting Nowhere Fast" on their own Record Records. The song reached No. 9 on the UK Indie Chart, and was followed by their second single, "Politics," also initially released on Record Records but picked up by Rough Trade Records, reaching No. 12. Oldroyd departed to join Music for Pleasure, and was replaced briefly by the British musician Paul Simon, who was in turn replaced by Darren Carl Harper before the next single, "Go for Gold" on Happy Birthday Records, their biggest indie chart hit, reaching No. 4. In October 1981 they released their only album, Pleasure. The late Rod Johnson shared drumming duties with Harper, who had left the band. The album came complete with a "Pleasure Bag" of stickers and postcards. it reached No. 2 on the indie chart and No. 60 on the UK Album Chart. The band's fourth single, "Fast Boyfriends" was released that same year. A final single, "Heaven", was issued in 1982, the band splitting later that year. Alan joined Sexbeat and later The Tall Boys. Evans made a guest appearance on Thomas Dolby's The Golden Age of Wireless album in 1982 (Dolby had guested on synthesizer on Pleasure). incidentally, "Getting Nowhere Fast" was covered by the Wedding Present on their Anyone Can Make a Mistake EP. well - now you know all about them - enjoy the gig recording. i don't know where the concert was, maybe someone out there can tell me? it's in the form of one long, big file. merry christmas!
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.