Zones was a punk and power pop band founded in 1977 after the end of PVC2 (formerly the bubbleglam and soft rock band Slik) and the Midge Ure's membership demise. PVC2 was conformed by Ure (future Ultravox frontman) on guitar, Russell Webb on bass, Billy McIsaac on keyboards and Kenny Hyslop on drums. Late 1977, Ure moved to Glen Matlock's The Rich Kids, leaving PVC2 which immediately ended. Then, Webb, Hyslop and McIsaac called Alex Harvey's cousin Willie Gardner for replace Ure on guitar and vocals. The band was called The Zones. In February 1978, Zones released a 7" single called Stuck With You (which B-Side was a song named "No Angels"). By the year, Zones toured with Magazine. The single was punk/power pop. The song attracted the attention of John Peel, who shortly afterwards recorded sessions with them, and Arista Records, who signed them and released the rest of their discography, beginning with the next single, Sign Of The Times, in 1978. In 1979, Zones released Under Influence, an album with power pop, reggae and like-post punk songs. But, after a bunch of Peel Sessions that year, the band split up. Gardner moved to Endgames, with Simple Minds' original drummer Brian McGee, McIsaac moved to a piano college in Glasgow, and Webb and Hyslop to The Skids. Webb teamed bands and projects with Skids' singer Richard Jobson (Skids singer) until 1988 and Hyslop, after collaborating with Skids album Joy, moved to Simple Minds (1981-1982) and Set The Tone (1982-1983).
Cells were a Boulder based band featuring John Neulin on guitar/vocals, Andy Heermans on bass, Kelly Clear on drums and Warren Ryder on keyboards. An early version of the band was known as "The Noise". Bass player Heermans first saw The Noise peform at Boulder's Blue Note (on Boulder's new Pearl St. mall) club in '78 and soon joined the band newly renamed Cells. During the year 1979 the group focused mostly on recording instead of live performance. A new Boulder recording studio called Northstar Studios while still in construction allowed Cells to come in during non construction hours and lay down several tracks, including two songs that would become the band's debut 45 "Uh-Oh" and "Terminal Thighs". On 'Thighs" Clears' brother Jay Clear played lead guitar. This red vinyl 45 has proven to be one of the most collectable and popular records from the Colorado late 70's new wave era. Their debut single was released in the summer of '79 and quickly got a great review in London's Meloday Maker. The band began to peform a few shows in Boulder including a June 1979 date at the Blue Note with The Corvairs. By September of that year both bands, like so many other Colorado bands of that era, had left Colorado permanently in search of a larger audience and steady work. In the fall of '79 Cells moved to the east coast, staying in Boston for 3 weeks before settling into a loft on Canal St. in New York City found by Neulin's girlfriend. At this time keyboardist Ryder left the band and returned to Colorado. Cells became a three piece band. The group then began peforming regularly in New York at venues such as Hurrah's, Max's Kansas City, and CBGBs. in 1981 a follow up single was released again on Rude Records. After a 1982 tour of New England internal tensions along with Neulin's growing drug dependency forced Cells to pack it in. Andy Heermans' today is a recording engineer and producer and performs in FUN. Jon Neulin passed away in the early nineties in Seattle from a drug overdose. Drummer Kelly Clear left music and now works in the Film industry as a Gaffer(Chief Lighting Technician). He currently (6/01) is working on the new Steven Speiberg film" Minority Report" and has also done the lighting on over 50 Music Videos, Britney Spears, Cheryl Crow, Dido,Wheatus, The Cult, and many more .
Joy is the final album by the Scottish band The Skids. It was the fourth studio record and their first after the departure of signature guitarist Stuart Adamson, who then founded Big Country. As such, it represented a change of direction from rock to folk music, amplifying the traditional Scottish element already hinted at in previous releases. The band line-up featured Richard Jobson and Russell Webb, with J. J. Johnson (drums / percussion), Paul Wishart (saxophone / flute / keyboards / percussion / vocals) & a collection of musical friends. They all went to Britannia Row Studios in London for rehearsals and song development. Sessions in July 1981 led to the release of the first single from the upcoming album. The single "Fields" (Virgin VS-401) was released in August 1981, with Kenny Hyslop on drums. The song also featured Billy MacKenzie (vocals), and Alan Rankine (guitar), who were the core members of the band The Associates. Guesting, early in her career, was Virginia Astley (flute). The strummed guitar and marching band elements (bagpipe emulation, percussion) signalled a change in direction, though the rabble-rousing melody and football pitch vocal delivery were standard Skids fare. Sessions continued through September 1981 and produced a second single, the harmonically rich Iona (named for the Scottish island). It was the only song on the album to be recorded at Highland Studios in Inverness, Scotland. Released in October 1981 (as Virgin VS-449) this was the last Skids track to feature Adamson, alongside Mike Oldfield. At 3:24 the single edit is significantly shorter than the epic to be found on the album. The eleven track Joy was issued November 1981 (as Virgin V-2217). It marks a concerted effort to update traditional Scottish music into the age of modern rock recordings. The sound is fundamentally more pastoral than previous Skids efforts. Gone are the layers of harmonically treated electric guitar. However, elements of this style were hinted at previously, particularly on the "Strength Through Joy" mini-album. The lyrical concerns of strife, war and brotherhood are Jobson staples. With Paul Wishart on saxophone, "And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda" is a cover of the song by Eric Bogle. Though the band recorded a BBC Radio 1 session and shot a music video for "Iona", promotion problems at Virgin forestalled a tour. With patchy coverage, no live support and a difficult change in musical direction, the record sank without a trace. Critical reception was mixed at best. For example Trouser Press wrote "To call it bad is curt but realistic." However The Guardian greeted it happily. The album bore fruit in several working relationships. For example, Virginia Astley was to record her debut solo releases with Russell Webb and also guests on Jobson's poetry album "The Ballad Of Etiquette". Later, The Skids split up and the remaining members Richard Jobson and Russell Webb formed The Armoury Show, with Magazine's John McGeoch and John Doyle shortly afterwards. This album is unreleased on CD.
Classic band who did this great 45 and a very rare 12` called "Dance Around" in 1979. After this the band did one other 45 i know of called "Fresh Tscha Tscha / Fingertips" which i havent heard but am told its shit. I think they were trying to get into the German New Wave scene. Eventually they changed there name to 'FRISCHE FARBE' and had no success at all.