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Interview

Vibrators
27/03/2000



Please give a brief history of the band, including current line up.

The Vibrators made their debut on Epic with the classic "Baby Baby" single, which was followed by their first album "Pure Mania" which spent five weeks in the UK Top 75, peaking at number 49. A second single from the album - but a live version - "London Girls", came out in the summer of 1977 and was promoted by a tour supporting ex-Mott The Hoople mainman Ian Hunter. Bassist Pat Collier left soon after to form power pop band The Boyfriends, and was replaced by Gary Tibbs. The band's next release was the single "Automatic Lover" (March 1978), which not only reached 35 in the charts but also got the band on Top Of The Pops. A second LP, "V2" was released in April and reached number 33 in the British Charts, and is still regarded today as one of New Waves finest moments.

John Ellis left soon after to follow a solo career and to work with Peter Gabriel, and was replaced by Dave Birch, whilst a fifth member was added with keyboard/saxophanist Don Snow. However this line up of the band only recorded the "Judy Says (Knock You In The Head)" single (a UK No 70 single in the summer of 1978). There then follwed a new line up of the band: Knox - guitar/vocals, Eddie - drums, with new members Ben Brierly - bass and Greg Van Cook - guitar. This again proved to be short lived and Knox left to have a go at being a solo artist towards the end of 1978.

Eddie struggled on with the band, as well as drumming for The Inmates (an R&B band). In early 1980 a more successful line up : Kip - vocals, Eddie - drums, Ian Woodcock (ex-Eater) - bass, Phil Ram - guitar, Adrian Wyatt - guitar, signed to Rat Race Records. They released two singles "Gimme Some Lovin'" and "Disco In Mosco", but the band split up at the end of the year.

The original line up reformed in mid 1982 (Knox, Eddie, Pat Collier and John Ellis) and signed to Anagram Records, releasing a new version of "Baby Baby". This was followed by a single and album both called "Guilty" before the band moved to Ram Records, releasing the singles "MX America" and "Flying Home" and the LP "Alaska 127" (named after Pat Colliers studio). By mid 1985 the band had signed to Carrere Records for whom they recorded the "Baby Blue Eyes" single before moving back to Ram for the "Fifth Amendment" LP and "Blown Away By Love" single.

By the time the band signed to FM Revolver in mid 1986, Pat Collier had left to pursue a successful career producing bands, and was replaced by Noel Thompson for the "Vibrators Live" LP. John Ellis then left (and is now a full-time member of the Stranglers) and was replaced by Mickie Owen, and Noel Thompson left and was replaced by Mark Duncan. The new line up released the "Recharged" album, the "String Him Along" single and also the 1988's "Meltdown" album. Mickie Owen left and was replaced by Nigel Bennett (ex-Members) for the 1990's "Vicious Circle" LP. This line up of the Vibrators, toured regularly, and released a string of albums: "Volume Ten" (1990), "The Power Of Money" (a re-make compilation, 1993), "Hunting For You" (1994), and "Unpunked" (an acoustic compilation album, 1996). This last one being released on their own label, Vibrators Records.

1996, the band's twentieth year, saw a new line up: Knox - guitar / vocals, Eddie - drums, with newcomers Darrell Bath (ex-UK Subs, Crybabies, Dogs D'Amour) - guitar, and Nick Peckham (ex-Big Boy Tomato) - bass, but by June had decided to switch to playing as a three-piece (Knox, Nick and Eddie). The band recorded "French Lessons With Correction!"  (1997) and "Buzzin'" (1999), and  continues to do live work, with Robbie Tart replacing Nick Peckham on bass in September 1999.

Who's to say we won't see another twenty-one years of Pure Mania!

Taken from the The Vibrators webiste.

Current line up;
Knox - Vocals/guitar
Robbie Tart - Bass
Eddie - Drums

Discogrpahy.

We Vibrate/Whips And Furs Rak 245 11/76

Pogo Dancing/The Pose (With Chris Spedding) Rak 246 11/76

Bad Time/No Heart
(Not released - Acetates only) Rak 253 03/77

Baby Baby/Into The Future Epic Sepc 5302 01/77

London Girls (Live)/Stiff Little Fingers (Live) Epic Sepc 5565 08/77

London Girls (Live)/Stiff Little Fingers

(Studio, Dj Version Of Single) Epic Sepc 5565adj 08/77

Automatic Lover/Destroy Epic Sepc 6137 02/78

Judy Says (Knock You In The Head) Epic Sepc 6393 05/78
Gimme Some Lovin'/Powercry Ratrace Rat 2 02/80
Disco In Mosco/Take A Chance Ratrace Rat 4 10/80
Baby Baby (New version)/Dragnet Anagram Ana 4 11/82
Guilty/Hang Ten Anagram Ana 8 05/83
Mx America/Shadow Love Ram Ram 7005 11/83
Flying Home/Punish Me With Kisses Carrere Car 329 05/84
Baby Blue Eyes/Amphetamine Blue Carrere Car 338 07/84
Blown Away By Love/The Demolishers Ram Chp 01/85
String Him Along/Disco In Mosco Revolver Rev 45 04/88
Halfway To Paradise/Drive Revolver Rev 52 01/90

European 7" Singles: Label Cat No. Date
We Vibrate/Whips And Furs
(France, Germany, Pic cover) n.a. n.a. n.a.
Pogo Dancing/The Pose
(With Chris Spedding - Pic cover in Germany) Rak 246 11/76
Baby Baby (Spain - Pic cover) Epic Epc 5302 - /77
Baby Baby (Australia - Promo with
London Girls on B-side) n.a. Ma 179982 - /77
Automatic Lover/Destroy (Italy) n.a. n.a. n.a.
Automatic Lover/Desroy (Pic sleeve
in Germany) Epic Sepc 6137 02/78
String Him Along/Every Day I Die A Little Yellow Lid Efa 02219 01/88
A lot of this info comes from UK list mainly concerned with pic sleeves, etc., so cossequently isn't complete.

American 7" Singles: Label Cat No. Date
Baby Blue Eyes/Somnambulist (Canada) Dallcourt Dc 50110 01/84

European 7" Ep: Label Cat No. Date
Rectroactive (France) Barket 495 -/94

12" Singles: Label Cat No. Date
Baby Baby (Stereo)/Baby Baby (Mono)
(USA only, Dj version) Columbia As 439 01/77
Flying Home/Flash Flash Flash/ Mx America Ram Ram 70077 03/84
Flying Home/Punish Me With
Kisses/Mx America Carrere Cart 329 05/84
Baby Blue Eyes/Amphetamine
Blue/ Flying Home (Later copies no pic sleeve) Carrere Cart 338 07/84
Blown Away By Love/The
Demolishers/Still Not Over You Ram 12chp 7011 01/85
Disco In Mosco Ep/Rip Up The City/ Amphetamine Blue/Yeah Yeah Yeah (Germany) Repetoire Rr 1001 01/88
Amphetamine Blue/Yeah Yeah Yeah (Germany) Repetoire Rr 1001 01/88

UK Albums (Vinyl): Label Cat No. Date
Pure Mania Epic Epc 82097 06/77
V2 Epic Epc 82495 04/78
Batteries Included (Compilation) Cbs Embassy Cbs 31840 07/80
Guilty Anagram Gram 002 01/82
Alaska 127 Ram Ramlp 001 03/84
Fifth Amendment Ram Chplp 002 01/85
Vibrators Live Revolver Revlp 85 01/86
Recharged Revolver Revlp 101 01/88
Meltdown Revolver Revlp 121 11/88
Vicious Circle Revolver Revlp 135 10/89
Volume 10 Revolver Revlp 159 10/90

European Albums (vinyl): Label Cat No. Date
Alaska 127 Repetoire Rr 2006-1 01/84
Alaska 127 (Germany, yellow vinyl, diff sleeve) Repetoire Efa 02217 01/84
Fifth Amendment (Germany, red vinyl) Repetoire Rr 331016 01/85
Fifth Amendment (France, diff sleeve) Kampa Discx 2500 01/86
Vibrators Live (France, includes extra tracks: Rip Up The City and Yeah Yeah Yeah) GMG 75019 01/86
Vibrators Live (Germany) Repetoire n.a. - /87
Recharged (Germany) Repetoire n.a. - /88
Yeah Yeah Yeah (Compilation - Germany) Repetoire Rr 4001-C 06/88
Pure Mania (Germany) Repetoire Rr 2001-I 01/89
V2 (Germany) Repetoire Rr 2002-L 01/89
Guilty (Germany, yellow vinyl) Repetoire Rr 2006-L 01/89

American Albums (vinyl): Label Cat No. Date
Pure Mania (Diff mix to UK album) Columbia n.a. - /77

UK Cassettes: Label Cat No. Date
Recharged Revolver Revmc 101 01/88
Meltdown (Extra tracks: Wasted Life and Never Trust Anyone) Revolver Revmc 121 01/88
Vicious Circle Revolver Revmc 135 01/90
USA Cassettes: Label Cat No. Date
The Power Of Money Continuum n.a. - /92
UK Albums (CD): Label Cat No. Date
Meltdown Revolver Revxd 121 11/88
Vicious Circle Revolver Revxd 135 10/89
Volume 10 Revolver Revlp 159 10/90
Power Of Money (Re-recorded Compilation) Anagram Gram 52 03/93
Live At The Marquee 1977 Relea-
sed Emo-
tions Rem 018 05/93
BBC Live In Concert: Vibrators/The Boys Windsong Wincd 036 10/93
Guilty/Alaska 127 Anagram Cd Punk 16 11/93
Fifth Amendment/Recharged Anagram Cd Punk 34 -/94
Demos '76'77 Dojo Dole Cd 179 10/94
Hunting For You Dojo Dole Cd 179 11/94
Best Of (Previously The Power Of Money Compilation) Anagram Cd Punk 43 08/95
Meltdown/Vicious Circle Anagram Cd Punk 58 09/95
Live At The Marquee 1977 Dojo Dole Cd 110 01/96
Unpunked (Acoustic compilation) Vibrators Vibes 001 02/96
Independent Singles Collection Anagram Cd Punk 76 05/96
French Lessons With Correction Anagram Cd Punk 114 09/97
Volume 10/Unpunked Over-
ground Over 73cd 06/98
Rip Up The City - Live Reciever Rrcd 263 02/99

UK EPs (CD): Label Cat No. Date
Halfway To Paradise/Drive/Rocket
Ride To Heaven/Fire Revolver Revxc 52 01/90
Troops Of Tomorrow/Destroy/Girl's Screwed Up/Tired Of Living With You Raw Power UK Rp 001 08/98

European Albums (CD): Label Cat No. Date
Pure Mania (France) Sony Epc 471409-2 06/92
Recharged (France) Accord 100612 n.a.
V2 (France) Sony Epc 471408-2 n.a.
Yeah Yeah Yeah (Compilation Germany) Repetoire Rr 4001-C n.a.

USA Albums (CD): Label Cat No. Date
Pure Mania Nice Price Ck35038 - /91
The Power Of Money Continuum 10002-2 10/92
We Vibrate - The Best Of
(Mix of studio, demos and live tracks) Cleopatra Clp 0090-2 - /97(?)
V2 Sony (Rewind) n.a. 04/99

How many gigs have you done and what is the best gig Vibrators have ever done and who else was on the line-up?

Probably done around 1100 gigs or more. Impossible to say which was the best one, but probably the bigger ones with Die Toten Hosen in Germany in 1992.

How come Exploited ended up with 'Troops Of Tomorrow' and which version do you prefer?

I don't know how the Exploited ended up with our song. I imagine they heard it and liked it enough to cover it. I still prefer our version (we've got two out, I think they're both good, but there's not much in it as the Exploited version was very close to our when they recorded it. I know when that live they do it quite differently. In the Vibrators we play it pretty close to the original recording.

If you could be any age again, what would it be and why?

I actually like being my age (54). I'd hate to be under forty, all the kinds of things you have do. Now I feel freer. The only thing I miss is probably having more energy.

What are the best names for bands you have heard?

I don't have a favourite name. I like ones with black humour, like the Corpsegrinders, Vomitorium, Rotting Christ etc, just because they are funny.

What is the favourite song (and what band is it by) of each member of the band ?

My (Knox) favourite song is 'I'm Bored' by Iggy Pop. Eddie like the album 'Electric Ladyland' by Jimi Hendrix, and Robbue likes 'New Rose' by The Damned.

Who would you most like to be stuck in a lift with and why?

Bill Gates - he could tell me how to make some money!!

Plans, gigs and releases planned for 2000.

We should be touring the US in april for a month, then maybe tree shows in Croatia, then of weeks in Germany/Switzerland/Czech Repulic, then up into Scandinavia for a couple of weeks so we'll be working quite hard. Last year was one of our busiest, doing nearly 100 gigs. I don't know if we're making another album this year, but we may do a Christmas single!!!

Any final comments?

It's nice to be able to still be working after nearly 25 years - thanks to everyone who's made it possible, that's you the fans.


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