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 Cocteau Twins were a Scottish rock band active from 1979 to 1997. They were formed in Grangemouth by Elizabeth Fraser (vocals), Robin Guthrie (guitars, drum machine), and Will Heggie (bass), with Heggie replaced by multi-instrumentalist Simon Raymonde in 1983.
The group has earned much critical praise for its distinctive ethereal sound and the soprano vocals of Fraser, which often abandoned recognizable language altogether. They have been recognized as pioneering the 1980s subgenres of ethereal wave and dream pop and were associated with UK label 4AD for much of their career. There were four sessions for John, who really liked them. here's their second outing, secured on 22/01/1983.
English post-punk legends the fall formed in 1976 in Prestwich, Greater Manchester. With an ever-changing line up, the group essentially consists of its founder and only constant member, the late Mark E. Smith. The singer was famously dismissive of musicians and when asked about the high turnover of Fall members said "if it's me
and your granny on bongos, then it's the Fall". First associated with the late 1970s punk movement, the band's music evolved through numerous stylistic alterations, often concurrently with changes in the membership. The music was characterised by repetition and an abrasive guitar-driven sound and is always underpinned by Smith's typically cryptic lyrics - abstract poetry filled with complicated wordplay, bone-dry wit, cutting social observations and general misanthropy. They have released well over thirty studio albums and more than triple that when live albums and compilations (often against Smith's wishes) are taken
into account. While the Fall have never achieved widespread success beyond minor hit singles in the late 1980s they have a maintained a strong cult following. peel was a big, big fan and gave them vast amounts of sessions. Here's the third, taped on 16/09/1980.
LARRY BERRIDGE AND BYRON CON FORMED HI FI IN 1977 WITH THE AID OF BILLY LEMON AND TERRY JENKINS. RAY DORSET OF MUNGO JERRY MANAGED THEM FOR A WHILE; (LARRY HAD PLAYED BASS FOR MUNGO DURING 1977). IN 1978 THEY TAPED SOME ROUGH DEMOS IN TERRY’S LIVING ROOM, ONE OF WHICH WAS ‘RUN RUN.’ BY NOW BILL GILLIAM HAD BECOME THEIR MANAGER, AND HE PLAYED THE TAPE TO AARON SIXX AT A SMALL UK LABEL, AURA RECORDS. HE LIKED ‘RUN RUN’ AND TOOK THE GROUP INTO THE STUDIO TO RECORD IT AS THEIR FIRST SINGLE, WITH ‘SOLE KITCHEN’ ON THE B-SIDE. ‘RUN RUN’ WAS PLAYED BY PEEL, WHO LIKED IT SO MUCH HE INVITED THE GROUP TO RECORD A SESSION FOR HIS LEGENDARY RADIO ONE EVENING PROGRAMME.
THIS SESSION, FROM MARCH 1979, CONTAINED FOUR GREAT TRACKS INCLUDING WHAT FOR ME IS HI FI’S FINEST MOMENT – A STUNNING SONG CALLED ‘THE SILENCE,’ A TONGUE IN CHEEK STORY OF A SLIGHTLY STRANGE SEDUCER WHO DISCOVERS THE GIRL IS WEIRDER THAN HIM. AFTER THIRTY YEARS OF COLLECTING, PRODUCING AND WRITING ABOUT MUSIC THIS EXTRAORDINARILY CREEPY,
ETHEREAL SONG IS ONE OF MY FAVOURITE THREE MINUTES. A NEW DEMO TAPE WAS RECORDED AND HANDED ON TO TIM GREEN FROM MUNGO JERRY, WHO HAD EMIGRATED TO HAMBURG WHERE HE BEGAN HIS OWN PRODUCTION COMPANY, BOOGIETUNES. THE DEMO WAS PLAYED TO A & R PEOPLE AT THE WARNER-ELEKTRA-ASYLUM (WEA) COMPANY IN MID-1979 AND THEY WERE IMPRESSED. THE BAND RECORDED THE FIRST ALBUM, ’TOWNS AND BARS,’ AT HAFEN-KLANG STUDIOS IN HAMBURG DURING OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER. THIS WAS RELEASED IN 1980 WITH AN ACCOMPANYING SINGLE, ‘A LITTLE LOVE AWAY’. THESE RELEASES WERE FOLLOWED BY A SECOND COLLECTION IN 1981, ‘SING SONG,’ AND A FURTHER SINGLE, ‘DON’T BREAK THE SPELL.’ RECORDING SESSIONS FOR A THIRD ALBUM,
TENTATIVELY TITLED ‘GRINGO’S REVENGE,’ GOT UNDERWAY IN BERLIN BUT THIS WAS NEVER COMPLETED BECAUSE THE GROUP SPLIT UP IN 1982. BYRON CON ISSUED A SOLO SINGLE, ‘CHAKANOORI TANGO’, ON PHONOGRAM THAT YEAR; LARRY BERRIDGE ALSO WENT SOLO, RENAMING HIMSELF SAL PARADISE. HE SECURED A MASSIVE ALBUM DEAL WITH ARISTA RECORDS, WALKING IN OFF THE STREET WITH TWO DEMO SONGS AND AND WALKING OUT WITH £285,000. HIS SOLO CAREER MADE THE BIGGEST IMPACT IN GERMANY, WHERE HIS FIRST ALBUM, ‘SHIMMER’ BECAME THE SOUNDTRACK FOR THE HIT ECKHART SCHMIDT FILM DIE STORIE IN 1984. HIS SECOND ALBUM ‘DAS WUNDER’ WAS RELEASED IN 1985, AGAIN A SOUNDTRACK TO ANOTHER ECKHART SCHMIDT FILM. HE WAS ALSO THE SOUNDTRACK WRITER AND MAIN ACTOR IN THE FILM ‘WIE TRUE IST NIK?’ IN 1986. SINCE THEN HE HAS SPENT TIME IN MONASTERIES AROUND THE WORLD AND IS NOW WITH HIS SECOND FAMILY . HE HAS PRODUCT ON ITUNES MUSIC UNDER THE NAMES, SAL PARADISE, SWZOO, D REG AND UNCLE MONSTERS SAUSAGE CURRY here's that one session for peel, recorded on 07/03/1979.
Howard Devoto (born Howard Andrew Trafford) is an English singer-songwriter and, frankly, a genius. He began his career as the frontman for the punk rock band Buzzcocks but then left to form Magazine, one of the first post-punk bands. His singing has been characterized as a "speak-sing voice that veered between amused croon and panicked yelp." During these college years, he met his future
bandmates Pete Shelley and Ben Mandelson. Inspired by the Sex Pistols, Devoto co-formed Buzzcocks with singer/guitarist Pete Shelley in 1975. He left the band in February 1977 after only one record (the Spiral Scratch EP) and a small number of performances. Devoto afterwards formed Magazine in 1977. They released several critically acclaimed albums, which met with moderate commercial success, as well as minor hits such as "Shot by Both Sides" and "A Song from Under the Floorboards". This is their second peel session, put down on 24/07/1978.
American alternative rockers The Pixies formed in 1986 in Boston, Massachusetts. The original lineup comprised Black Francis (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Joey Santiago (lead guitar), Kim Deal (bass, backing vocals) and David Lovering (drums). The band disbanded acrimoniously in 1993, but reunited in 2004. Deal left in 2013 and was replaced
briefly by Kim Shattuck before Paz Lenchantin joined for the band's 2014 tour. Lenchantin was inducted as an official member in 2016. The Pixies' music contains elements including psychedelia, noise pop, hard rock, surf pop, and surf rock. Black Francis is the primary songwriter and singer; his lyrics cover offbeat subjects such as
extraterrestrials, surrealism, incest, and biblical violence. They achieved modest popularity in their home country, but were more successful in the United Kingdom, mainland Europe and Israel. Their jarring pop sound influenced bands such as Nirvana, Radiohead, the Strokes, Blur and Weezer. Their popularity grew in the years following their break-up, leading to sold-out world tours following their reunion in 2004. In June 2013, they released their first new material in almost 10 years. loyal fan john peel gave them five sessions. here's the third, immortalised on 16/04/1989.
Tindersticks are an indie rock band from Nottingham, England that formed in 1991. They released six albums before singer Stuart A. Staples took on a solo career. The band reunited briefly in 2006, but more permanently the following year. The band have recorded several film soundtracks. This is the third session for our hero, preserved forever on 18/01/1994.
XTC emerged from Swindon, England, and were active between 1977 and 2005. The band enjoyed some chart success including the UK and Canadian hits Making Plans for Nigel (1979) and Senses Working Overtime (1982),
but are perhaps better known for their long-standing critical (rather than commercial) success. First coming together in 1972, the core duo of Andy Partridge (guitars & vocals) and Colin Moulding (bass & vocals) went through many
band names (including The Helium Kidz and Star Park) over the next five years. As the Helium Kidz, they were featured in a small NME article as an up-and-coming band from Swindon. Drawing influence from the New York Dolls,
and the emerging New York punk scene they played glam rock with home-made costumes and slowly built up a following. Drummer Terry Chambers joined in 1973. Keyboard player Barry Andrews joined in 1976, and the band finally settled on a name: XTC. the following year they were signed by Virgin Records, recording the 3D - EP that summer and following it up with their debut LP White Music in January 1978. These and future XTC releases would find Andy Partridge writing and singing about two-thirds of the material, while Colin Moulding would write and sing approximately one-third. this session was taped on 13/11/1978, the third of four the group recorded for john peel.
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.