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Crispy Ambulance

Inspired after witnessing gigs by the Sex Pistols and Magazine, vocalist Alan Hempsall formed Crispy Ambulance with guitarist Robert Davenport, bassist Keith Darbyshire, and drummer Gary Madeley. After several shows, including a support slot for Joy Division, they recorded their first single and contacted labels such as Rough Trade and Factory, only to be turned down. Upset but resourceful, the band released it on their own Aural Assault imprint. Rob Gretton (Joy Division's manager) was soon hired by Factory, and his first priority was signing Crispy Ambulance -- ironic since the label had earlier rejected the band. After a couple singles were derided in the press for their resemblance to Joy Division, the band was shifted to Factory's Belgian subsidiary. Their lone proper studio LP, The Plateau Phase, was released in 1982 and received more comparisons to their brethren, as well as '70s prog rock. The Crispies broke up later that year, but a number of posthumous releases containing studio extras, live material, and radio sessions saw issue. Most significant were the 1999 reissues of The Plateau Phase and live compilation Fin; the band re-formed in November of that year for a reunion show in Manchester to celebrate the fact. A live documention of the show was issued the following year, and the band opted to continue operating as a fully functioning entity. The Graham Massey-produced Scissorgun, a full-length LP for Darla, was released in 2002. ~ Andy Kellman
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Scissorgun

1. Step Up!

2. Loupgarou

3. Metal Grey

4. Re-Animator

5. Heatwave

6. Parallax

7. The Drop

8. End Game

9. Even Now, In Heaven There Are Angels Carrying Savage Weapons

10. Sound Block

x

Track List: Frozen Blood

1. Not What I Expected

2. Deaf

3. Come On (Session)

4. Drug User-Drug Pusher (Session) (1980 Radio Session)

5. October 31st (Session) (1980 Radio Session)

6. Egypt (Session) (1980 Radio Session)

7. A Sense Of Reason (Session) (1980 Radio Session)

8. Eastern Bloc (Session) (1980 Radio Session)

9. Concorde Square (Radio Session) (1980 Radio Session)

10. The Presence (Radio Session) (1980 Radio Session)

11. Headhunters (Live)

12. Frozen Blood (Live)

13. Turnbuckle (Live)

14. The Gift Of Danger (Live)

15. Hollow Points (Live)

16. The Grind (Live)

17. Cult (Live)

x

Track List: Fin

1. Rainforest Ritual (Live Groningen 17.1.1982)

2. United (Live London 16.12.1981)

3. Choral (Live London Venue 6.5.1982)

4. Deaf (Green Light/White Shirt) (Live Brussels 14.1.1982)

5. Brutal (Live Brussels 14.1.1982)

6. The Plateau Phase (Live Brussels 14.1.1982)

7. Nightfall Ends The Ceasefire (Live London 16.12.1981)

8. Bardo Plane (Live Eindhoven 8.1.1982)

9. At The Sounding Of The Klaxon (Live Coventry 28.11.1981)

10. Chill (Live Coventry 28.11.1981)

11. I Talking / You Talking (Live Coventry 28.11.1981)

12. Lucifer Rising (Live Nottingham 13.10.1982)

13. Black Death (Life Is Knife) (12" Version)

14. From The Cradle To The Grave (7" Version)

15. Four Minutes From The Frontline (7" Version)

16. Come On (Demo)

x

Track List: The Plateau Phase

1. Are You Ready?

2. Travel Time

3. The Force And The Wisdom

4. The Wind Season

5. Death From Above

6. We Move Through The Plateau Phase

7. Bardo Plane

8. Chill

9. Federation

10. Simon's Ghost

11. The Presence

12. Concorde Square

13. Sexus

Comments

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Odd name, good Synth New Wave.

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