‘Stalingrad’ from Bradford were Rich(ard) Claxton (vocals, synthesizer), Russ Snell (guitar), Mik Allison (drums, R.I.P.) & Justin ‘Sullivan’ Wood (bass). Mik sent me their demo-tape the year before they played at the Vort’n Vis (95-10-14). We exchanged some decent letters after that… Brian Talbot (‘Doom’, etc.) was in the band (on drums) during their ’97 Euro tour. Andy Irvine (‘Disaffect’) joined the band after Russ left and played on the Abandonnement 10” released by German label Scene Police.
They were considered a ‘hate-core’ band by some. The review I wrote for Tilt! #8 (’95) goes as follows: “Brutal metal-o-core grabbing your throat and shaking you all over. What stays in your head and body quite a while after listening to this, are the extreme anger of the vocalist, the way the bassist seems to thump your bowels instead of his strings and the acid-stings of the guitar. The kind of music Travis Bickle would listen to when he was 18 today.”.
After this tape, they did a split-7” with ‘Voorhees’ (on Jason Kilvington’s label Caught Offside), a self-titled one (on Richard Corbridge’s Armed With Anger) and another split with ‘Underclass’ (with 3 tracks from the demo; on Caught Offside). In ’97 the band released the above-mentioned 10″ and in ’98 the album Patty We Kind Of Missed You On Your Birthday was released on Armed With Anger.
The guys gave me this tape when I sat down with them for the interview for Tilt!#7. I knew them quite well because 3 of them were co-volunteers at the Vort’n Vis. I had even been in a band together with Hans (Verbeke): I borrowed him a bass and an amp so he could join ‘Yuppies’Death‘ in ’88. After that he went on to sing for ‘Rise Above’ and then became the guitarist of this band, together with Sacha (Baelen; drums) & Wim (Vandekerckhove; vocals) from Menen – both ex ‘Pietje Roze Konin’ en de Zeven Gèssprietjes’ (Pete the Pink Rabbit & the Seven Grass-blades) – and Jan Maelfait (bass, ex ‘Spirit Of Youth’), from Roeselare.
‘Ananda’ played at the Vort’n Vis 3 times (95-07-02 / 96-09-22 / 99-08-21). They came from Parisian suburbia. A few months before their first passage they recorded this demo. The line-up was Chrystèle Grall & Jean-Yves André (vocals), Thomas Guillanton (guitar; ex ‘Fingerprint’) & Sylvain Klein (guitar), Jérome ‘Mizou’ Bessout (drums; ex ‘Fingerprint’) and Jérome ‘Gunthar’ Lacombe (bass).
During the summer of 1995 they recorded for the Masqué 10”. Later Stéphane ‘Stu’ Joly (ex ‘Undone’) replaced Sylvain and Michaël Clergeot did vocals in stead of Jean-Yves (after the 10″ and the Habeas Corpus LP); the sound changed “from screamo to heavy gloomy hardcore sludge”.
The tracks Frustrations, Ailleurs, From The Past & Lies also appeared on the 10″. The review of that one (in my zine Tilt! #9) goes: >>This is superb emo where beautiful introspective melodies dance around crunch-metal moshparts…The vocals of Chrystèle & Jean-Yves will comfort, encourage and cheer you up. The lyrics talk about the suffering that can be caused in human relationhips. This gives me goose-bumps!<<