sábado, 21 de junho de 2014

The Sharks

The Sharks were formed in the late 1970's by guitarist Alan Wilson and were initially a 50's style Rockabilly band. A line up change in 1982 brought in Steve Whitehouse on slap bass and Paul 'Hodge' Hodges on drums. Within 2 weeks the trio had not only written and recorded their first album,but had also signed to Nervous records - a new label that was spearheading the Neo-Rockabilly movement.

Their first release was titled Phantom Rockers (1983) - an album that even now still sells well. This album has been licensed to several other companies and released in many formats including coloured vinyl and CD. Within a few months of the release the band split after a trip to Holland where they were recorded live by KRO radio. Some of these tracks were subsequently released on the Nervous LP First and Last Live.

It would be 10 years before the Sharks would emerge again. Steve went on to form Frenzy whilst Alan set about a career in sound engineering and producing. These days he runs Western Star, his own recording studio.

In 1993 Alan was producing an album for The Frantic Flintstones when bass player Gary Day suggested that the Sharks would be well received should they ever reform. So, the Sharks started recording - using Gary on bass - and were snapped up by Cherry Red records who released the Sharks comeback CD on their Anagram label. Recreational Killer received critical acclaim and before long the Sharks were touring again, busier that ever and headlining festivals all over Europe and Scandinavia.

In 1995, due to touring and recording commitments with Morrissey, Gary was replaced by original bassist Steve Whitehouse, but not before the coloured vinyl 12" EP Bitch Attack was released by Vinyl Japan as well as a CD of demo recordings called Ruff Stuff was released by Rockhouse records. Alan and Hodge later worked with Gary Day on his solo project The Gazmen - which was released as a 12" EP on Vinyl Japan. The tracks also featured Morrissey's guitarist Alain Whyte and has recently surfaced as a CD on Rock It records of Hollywood.

Now that Steve was back, the Sharks again toured extensively, this time billed as the original line up. Anagram released the album Colour My Flesh and Fury records put out a 7" EP called Sir Psycho. There were other re-issues and odd releases along the way including picture discs and many, many compilation appearances.

Hodge was replaced on drums by Ben Cooper (ex Restless) in 1996 who was in turn replaced by Carl Parry (ex Frenzy guitarist) a few years later.

The Sharks decided to quite live performances in 2000, when Alan opted to concentrate to establishing and running his now successful studio and label Western Star (make this a link to www.western-star.co.uk). But demand for the Sharks just didn't go away. Step 1 records released The Ultimate Collection in 2010 which sold well and Alan & Steve frequently cropped up on the odd Western Star compilation together as The Sharks.

Then towards the end of 2010 Alan asked Hodge (who was by now living in Spain) to fly over to the UK to guest on a few tracks he had written. Steve then played bass on the songs and before he knew it, Alan had some brand new Sharks recordings. A 7 inch vinyl EP was released on Western Star which sold out it's first pressing in a month! Finally after 18 months, a brand new Sharks studio album was released, the first in 15 years or more. "Infamy" exceeded everyone's high expectations and sold fast, attracting glowing reviews. This led to the almost unthinkable happening.... In April 2012 The Sharks played live, the first show in over 12 years. The band headlined the massive Satanic Stomp festival in Germany, and went down a storm. Since this 'one off' show the band have been swamped with requests to play all over the world - everywhere from Russia to South America, but there is probably only one more date that the band will accept and that is a big show in LA in Oct 2012. So watch this space.....

*Curitiba - Brasil - Psycho Carnival 2014*

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