April 1986 – From The Cradle To The Grave Fanzine

How do you think the Reverberation Club has been going?

Pete: In what respect?

Well do you think it’s successful?

Pete: Yeah, very – O’Malleys’ have even bought an optikenetic light ‘cause we got one and got lots in the Blitz, I mean the Blitz was fuckin’ dead, wasn’t it?

Do you think audiences in Rugby are apathetic?

Pete: I think audiences everywhere are like that… em… I haven’t seen people dancing or really getting into gigs and things like that since ’79 – seven years? I think audiences everywhere are like that and the more you ask them to dance then the less they actually do.

Do you reckon there is more apathy in Rugby than most places though?

Pete: No, I mean, Birmingham has got how many million people and there’s virtually a bigger “scene” in Rugby, but on the whole, yeah, everywhere is as bad as Rugby really.

More people getting up and dancing would help or at least if they clapped.

Pete: Yeah. All of the people who are something to do with the Reverberation Club will sit there clapping in between so it would sound like people were enjoying the band, I mean, most of the time clapping to a band which we probably thought were shit – trying to help, though, just to try and get some of the audiences going. Most of the bands we’ve had on are not of our own musical tastes, you know what I mean. It was partly for the people of Rugby that […]. I mean, there was a distinct lack of bands who we would like. The Jazz Butcher and band have been the only guys that have been decent guys and weren’t a bunch of rock-stars and “we’re it”, y’know.

Jason: The only band that didn’t ask for dressing rooms.

Are you going to put on bands that you would like – what bands might you consider?

Pete: The Folk Devils and The Scientists are two bands that we’d quite like to have, that we quite like.

More bands or just discos at the Reverberation Club?

Pete: At the moment, the music of our taste that was played at the discos has driven people away to a certain extent. (Pete then goes on to say something else and to be quite frank we couldn’t make out a word of it – so we quote – ) – mumble mumble mumble mumble mumble mumble mumble mumble mumble jumble bumble. Mumble mumble! We’ve made hundreds of pounds over the course of six months and it has all been put back into it. None of us have made any money out of it. We’re looking for a van. (Save of fetching and shifting things like P.A.s and things.)

Where did the idea of Reverberation Club come from – had you seen similar clubs elsewhere?

Pete: Sort of… we’d seen clubs. Like a club we’d seen in London 2 or 3 years ago which played the Velvets and the Stooges. It was just a great place to get high and crash out, you know what I mean. That’s what we wanted, somewhere to freak out.

Do you reckon there could be lots of little baby Rev. Clubs everywhere?

Pete: It’d be nice but it takes a lot of work and effort. There is lots of hassles like getting the bands to turn up. We tried to get a fairly wide field of music.

Jason: It was really hard to get a licence for live music at the Blitz.

Pete: Yeah, we had to hassle that guy for months and months to get the licence.

Do you have to pay?

Pete: No, it’s nothing, you book a night and you just get your disco or whatever and go up there.

And it’s somewhere for you to play as well?

Pete: And it’s definitely somewhere for us to play as well. I think Rugby audiences are a good audience because they’re the hardest audience anywhere to please.

In the Zig-Zag interview you were saying The Jesus And Mary Chain were deliberately trying to sound bad…

Pete: The… sounds they… are using – actually I think they’ve changed a lot.. When I said that it was after the first two singles. I think ‘Just Like Honey’ was an improvement, probably their best.

Don’t you reckon they are the only group that are very influenced by The Velvet Underground and don’t just sound like they’re strumming along?

Pete: Yeah, they’re all right, that Just Like Honey E.P. – I don’t actually possess it myself – it’s good. But we’ve been doing this stuff for three years and they for about six months and everybody starts saying we sound like the Jesus and Mary Chain.

What do you think about people saying you’re like The Velvets and The Stooges?

Pete: Well, I’m touched. Quite frankly they are our heroes, you know, it’s a compliment. I don’t mind that at all, I think they are much better than us. I dunno, I’ve got a lot of faith in our music, you know, but a lot of people have said we’re influenced by The Velvets and The Stooges.

Tell us about the record deal.

Pete: Yeah.

How long is it?

Pete: 3 years, em, the contract itself is for two albums but they’re pretty flexible really. It’s a good small record company, you know, and they care about what they’re releasing. We’ve got total artistic freedom, er – it’s a good chance for people to hear our music. It’s quite good as well because he pushes stuff abroad a lot, like The Jazz Butcher is quite a star in Germany.

They’re just a good record label (GLASS). I wouldn’t want to sign to a major label. Actually, that’s a lie, we sent our tapes to all companies. It’s not like Creation though, you know, most of the acts – The Jazz Butcher and people – they’re great people. The music’s not ideal but I like some of the stuff on it.

Was The Jazz Butcher anything to do with the deal?

He was a lot to do with it, mainly because he gave them a tape. The Jazz Butcher has been one of out earliest fans, you know. He wrote that thing in Zig-Zag as well. We had asked him if we should send a tape you know – would they release it or think it was rubbish – then somehow, he gave the guy a tape.

How did your tape do – well?

Pete: Yeah, a lot of people bought that tape and er… we got a lot of feedback from it… it’s interesting to hear peoples’ comments and the way they saw it.

Is it easy to put out a tape?

Pete: Yeah, with access to a tape to tape, Simon in Converg didn’t make any profit from selling it, only that we bought the tapes off him.

How different do you reckon you’d sound on tape?

Jason: Have you heard the demo?

No.

Jason: Well, it sounds pretty good.

Pete: THE BEST.

Jason: Yeah, but every band reckons they’re the best. It’s just the way it goes.

Do you think the record will smooth over any of your rough edges?

Pete: It will be rough. The first demo we started, like, recording one by one, each doing his own track, but that’s crap. The second we did live in the studio – much better. It’s not a lot different to some of our good live gigs.

When do you start recording?

Pete: April the 21st.

It will be in all shops?

Pete: Yeah, oh yeah – ‘available from all good record shops’ (laughter please). You know, the good record shops that have some independent labels – H.M.V., Virgin etc., Convergance.

Will you sell it at gigs?

Pete: Mmmmm, I dunno.

Jason: Maybe.

Why did you add a bass player?

Pete: We had a bass player in the beginning. That bass player then left to join The Push. We carried on for a while just as two guitars… then we got Gnattie to come in – persuaded him he could play drums although he couldn’t – and we then went on as a three-piece for quite a while. Then The Push split and Pete plays with us again.

Do you prefer being a four-piece?

Pete: It’s easier, yeah. Now that Pete plays, he gives us more freedom on guitars. It was good before – people couldn’t believe it – a band with no bass, you know?

You said you wouldn’t sign to a major – why did you send tapes to them, then?

Pete: We did that quite a while ago. When I say major companies, we’re talking Elektra, that sort of size. We went through all our records, picked out all the good ones and said ‘which label is this on?’ and then sent our demo with the hope that if they’d signed these bands then they’d sign us. Most didn’t even bother to reject us – they didn’t reply at all.

Was this disheartening?

Pete: Well, no, if you get a rejection slip they’re rejecting you. I think what they were saying is that they’re waiting for some-one else y’know. It’s very hard for a band to start out and get a deal. I mean if can get gigs in London it’s probably the best thing you can do to get a deal, but you can’t get a gig in London without a deal or a massive following – it can’t be done, otherwise you just don’t have a chance. It’s like a vicious circle really.

What’s this about riots at gigs (in Zig-Zag)?

Pete: That was the Jazz Butcher having a crack… well that was a much longer interview and it was very, very badly written.

Did you see I got attacked at our last gig (Blitz with The Cogs Of Tyme)? Actually, people at our gigs usually just stand there, in case they get the piss taken out of them!

Do you enjoy playing at the Black Lion?

Pete: Very much, the Black Lion is like home for us. It’s great. I’d rather play there than fuckin’ Wembley Arena. They’ll let anybody play without a tape, just go and book your day. Your first gig I reckon, you’ve gotta play on a week-day. We’d been there a few times before playing the week-end. There’s a regular crowd there actually. The Blitz is shit compared to it.

Have you plans for cover versions on the album or are you going to try and phase them out?

Pete: No, mmm… we’re not too sure.

Singles?

Pete: We can do but we’re not going to. They really gave us complete choice over singles, 12”, L.P. Singles get lost very easily and er… commercially there’s no point in us releasing a single. Mumble mumble.

Did you like the free-form freakout?

Pete: Yeah, not enough people joined, but I loved it. That’s my idea of a good night out. Really we didn’t expect anyone to join in, to tell you the truth. It was an […]. It’s actually very hard to go and just get up on stage and play music, especially not rehearsed. It was completely unrehearsed.

How far do you want to go?

Pete: How far can we go?

The end… many thanks to the Spacemen.

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