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Billy Childish

Guy Hamper Trio (the)

Guy Hamper Trio (the) – Polygraph Test

Guy Hamper Trio

Damaged Goods DAMGOOD339 [2009]
Polygraph Test / Sally Sensation

The Guy Hamper trio was an instrumental combo formed by Billy Childish with Wolf Howard on drums and Julie Hamper on bass. It also features another mainstay of the Medway scene in the person of James Taylor of the Prisoners, The James Taylor Quartet and many others on the organ. Their sole release was this single on Damaged Goods (DAMGOOD339) in 2009.
The result is a mix between Childish’s punk attitude and Taylor’s acid jazz/funk influence.
A-side is a reworking of Thee Headcoats’ Lie Detector renamed Polygraph Test. It’s got a strong Psychedelic feel with the organ to the fore. Sally Sensation (initially recorded by the Buff Medways in 2001) is less frantic and groovier. They planned to record an LP, but nothing happened yet.

Milkshakes (the)

The Milkshakes – It’s You

Milkshakes Records – BILK-0 [1982]  
 It’s You / Please Don’t Tell My Baby 

Mickey Hampshire (guitar and vocals) and Mark’ Banana Bertie’ Gilbert played with two friends in a band called Mickey and the Milkshakes. They also accompanied the Pop Rivets (featuring Billy Childish on vocals and Bruce Brand on guitar) during a tour of Europe as roadies. When half of the Milkshakes lost interest in the band, and the Pop Rivets broke up, the natural move was to merge both bands. Childish learned to play the guitar in the process, and Brand switched to drums.

Childish and Hampshire quickly began to pen minor classics one after another, becoming the Garage rock equivalent of Lennon & McCartney, Childish bringing the Punk energy and Hampshire the melodic side.

The career of the Milkshakes was placed under the double influence of the early Beatles and the Kinks (with always some Link Wray thrown in for good measure.) The A-side of this single is clearly on the Kinks’ side. It’s You bears more than one common point with the Kinks’ I Need You (B-side of Set Me Free.)

Sung in a husky voice, Please Don’t Tell My Baby is more desperate and shows the band’s Punkish side. But lyrics like “Please don’t tell my baby I saw her last night / I saw her kiss that boy / Please don’t tell her that I know / ’cause when I catch her gonna get it all / I’m gonna put it on the line / That I’ll take her…all her lying / She made me very mad / I’m gonna treat her bad / She gonna wish she never told the lie she had” remain close to the Beatles’ Run For Your Life.


The Milkshakes – Soldiers of Love

Milkshakes - Soldier of love

Upright records – UP-6 [1983]
Soldiers of Love / Shimmy Shimmy

By 1983, Russ Wilkins, formerly of the Pop Rivets, had replaced Mark Gilbert on bass, but that was the only change in the band since, stylistically-wise, the Milkshakes didn’t change their musical formula. Their second single was a vivid demonstration of their love for the Star Club days of the Beatles. If both songs weren’t from the pen of Lennon and McCartney (Soldiers of Love was an Arthur Alexander song and Shimmy Shimmy derivated from a traditional jazz tune), the Milkshakes versions were obviously inspired by the covers of the same songs made by the Beatles; they even got the same wrong credit as the Beatles for Shimmy Shimmy.
Soldiers of Love is also the first apparition by the Milk-Boilers who soon became the Delmonas.

Debbie & Jackie

Kyra

Kyra – Kyra sings Marieke

Vinyl Japan – PAD 38 [1998]
Marieke / Die Wonderlijke Dag (This Wond’rous Day)

In 1998, Kyra, without the Headcoatees, released one single titled Kyra Sings Marieke on Vinyl Japan. She was, of course, backed by Thee Headcoats, namely Billy Childish, Bruce Brand and Johnny Johnson.
Marieke, the title track was lifted from her solo album (Here I Am, Here I Always Am) and is a cover of Belgian singer Jacques Brel (Kyra comes from Belgium, by the way). She sings it with passion, and the tension goes crescendo until the end of the song.
The B-side is a Childish original (This Wondrous Day) that Kyra translated into Flemish (Die Wonderlijke Dag). It’s one of their best songs, both for Childish, the songwriter and Kyra, the singer. It’s sad and beautiful at the same time, a song that sounds like a traditional tune and seems to exist for decades. The musical saw reinforces the gloomy aspect, while the Flemish language adds a vernacular aspect. But most important, Kyra, who was too often reduced in Thee Headcoatees as the “Punk element”, can sing in a self-assured manner, without too much effect. Great!

Delmonas (the)

Delmonas (the) – Hello, We Love You! The Big Beat EPs

Delmonas

Big Beat Records 10WIK 348 [2021]
Comin’ Home Baby – Chains – Woa’s Now – He Tells Me He Loves me / Hello ,I Love You – I’m The One For You – Peter Gunn Locomotion – I Want You

When they recorded After School Session in early 1983, The Milkshakes asked two of their girlfriends (Hillary and Sarah) to provide backing vocals on three songs (Cadillac, Soldier Of Love and Goodbye Girl.) It worked very well, and after adding a third member, Louise, The Delmonas were born. Of course, the Milkshakes provided the backing band.
Their debut on records took the form of two EPs on Big Beat Records in 1984.
The first one featured two covers, Mel Torme’s I’m Coming Home and The Cookies’Chains. A pair of two Hampshire/Childish originals completed the set: Woa’ Now (that the Milkshakes recorded on Fourteen Rhythm & Beat Greats) and He Tells Me Loves Me (that later appeared on the Milkshakes’The Milkshakes’ Revenge!).
Louise takes the lead on Comin’ Home in a very voluptuous manner. By comparison, Chains is very lighthearted and pure fun. Woa Now brings back a touch of Garage and Beatles’ Hamburg days feel. The best track has been kept for the end: He Tells Me He Loves Me sounds like an instant Girl Groups classic in the style of the Shangri-Las.
The second single is based upon the same pattern: two covers and two originals. Hello, I Love You is the Doors song played on the music of the Kinks’ All Day And All Of The Night. Peter Gunn Locomotion owes more to Freddie Starr’s version than the original one. The two originals (I’m The One For You and I Want You) had previously been recorded by the Milkshakes. Still, the girls added a brand new dimension to these songs, with their (dangerous) charms and sensibility, especially on I Want You, which sounds like a lost gem from Laurie records.
Both singles are now reissued by Ace/Big Beat records on this superb 10” album.

Available here

Delmonas (the) – Comin’ Home Baby (Volume 1)

Big Beat Records SW 101 [1984]
Comin’ Home Baby – Chains – Woa’s Now – He Tells Me He Loves me


Delmonas (the) – Hello We Love You (Volume 2)

Big Beat Records SW102 [1984]
Hello ,I Love You – I’m The One For You – Peter Gunn Locomotion – I Want You

Debbie & Jackie

Headcoats Sect (thee)

Thee Headcoat Sect-1 Thee Headcoat Sect-2

Thee Headcoats Sect

Deerstalking Men – DAMGOOD265CD
Strychnine – My Dear Watson – Fog-Bound Pinhead – Troubled Times – Cowboys Are Square – Baby What’s Wrong – Why Don’t Toy Smile Now – The Witch – Squaresville – Lie Detector – Deerstalking Man – I’m A Gamekeeper

Ready Sect Go!– DAMGOOD266CD
Ain’t That Just Like Me – Down In The Bottom – I’m A King Be – Take Out Some Insurance On Me – Knight Of The Baskervilles – I’m A Lover Not A Fighte – Mean Red Spider – A Certain Girl – She’s Fine She’s Mine – I Got Love If You Want It – Ready Sect Go – I’m Ready

A recent discussion with a friend about the Rolling Stones and Sir Jagger’s birthday brought the name of the Downliners Sect back to the map. After that, it wasn’t long before we talked about the Headcoats Sect.
It seemed inevitable that sooner than later, Billy Childish would meet those ’60s rhythm’n’blues misfits that are Keith Grant and Don Craine of the Downliners Sect. Back in the sixties, The Downliners Sect were raw, and next to them, the Rolling Stones and the Pretty Things sounded almost suave. Needless to say that no one ever thought of ennobling Craine nor Grant. And though there was a generation between them, they were clearly with the same page, like fathers and sons. It was not just the hat; it was the music, the sense of humor, and the attitude, both bands sharing the same aggressive, rough, and no-compromise approach. Together they recorded two albums in the second half of the ’90s. Each band benefited from this fruitful collaboration. Childish, Johnson, and Brand brought the freshness of their youth, the right backing band (with a special nod to Johnny Johnson on harp), as well as a bunch of Childish originals that seemed tailored fit for the two veterans. Craine and Grant brought a touch of professionalism to the project. Thee Headcoats records often sound as if they were recorded in the kitchen on a mono/two-track cheap recorder. Nothing like that here with Liam Watson’s recording who managed to capture the vibe without altering the spontaneity of the performance. Musically both acts melt perfectly, Craine’s rhythm guitar and Grant’s superb fuzzy bass perfectly complementing Thee Headcoats. Worth mentioning is the musical dialog on “I’m A Dearstalking Man” and “Ready Sect Go.”
The first album relies more on Childish’s classics with some covers thrown in for good measure (including two Sonics tunes) while “Ready Sect Go” contains classic blues/rhythm’n’blues covers with two Childish originals (Knight of the Baskervilles and Ready Sect Go!). Both are excellent and complimentary.

Find them on Damaged Good website.