PUNKNET 77 - Vibrators


The text is taken from the booklet of The Best of the Vibrators CD and is written by Mark Brennan.

Vocalist / guitarist lan 'Knox' Carnochan, bassist Pat Collier, guitarist John Ellis and drummer Eddie originally formed The Vibrators in February '76, their first gig being a support slot to The Stranglers at a college in North London. They also supported The Sex Pistols at the 100 club whilst the legendary 'Punk Festival' at the same venue introduced the band to session guitarist extraordinaire Chris Spedding. He recommended the band to his then record company, Rak, who signed them in September of the same year. Their debut single We Vibrate came out in the November - one of the first Punk singles - and was followed two weeks later by the Pogo Dancing single which was also co-credited to Spedding. However, a planned third Rak single Bad Time / No Heart was recorded but not issued as the group moved instead to Epic Records.
They made their debut on Epic with the classic Baby Baby 45 which was followed by their first album Pure Mania which spent five weeks in The UK Top 75, peaking at No.49. A second single from the album, London Girls, came out in the summer of '77 and was promoted by a support tour with ex-Mott The Hoople mainman lan Hunter. Bassist Collier left soon after this to form Power Pop band The Boyfriends and he was replaced by Gary Tibbs who debuted with the band on March '78's Automatic Lover single which not only hit No.35 in the UK charts but also saw the band on Top Of The Pops! A second LP, V2, was released a month later and reached No.33 in the British Charts and still today is regarded as one of New Wave's finest moments.
John Ellis left soon after to follow a solo career and to tour with Peter Gabriel and he was replaced by Dave Birch whilst a fifth member was added in keyboardist Don Snow. However, this line up of the band recorded only the Judy Says (Knock You In The Head) single (a UK No.70 in the summer of '78) before Snow left. Tibbs was replaced by Ben Brierly and Birch was replaced by Greg Van Cook. Once again this proved to be a short-lived set up as Knox left for a stab at solo stardom at the tail end of 1978 and for nearly 18 months Eddie struggled on with a variety of musicians under The Vibrators' name as well as drumming with R&B outfit The lnmates.
Early 1980 saw Eddie return with a new record deal and a brand new line up of The Vibrators - Kip on vocals, lan Woodcock (ex-Eater) on bass and guitarists Phil Ram and Adrian Wyatt. Signing to Rat Race Records the band released two 45's, Gimme Some Lovin' and Disco in Moscow, before splitting at the end of the year. However, an offer to reform the original line up of Knox, Collier, Ellis and Eddie was accepted in mid '82 and The Vibrators announced their return by signing to Anagram Records and releasing a new version of Baby Baby. This was followed by a single and album both called Guilty before the band moved to Ram Records and released the single's MX America and Flying Home and the LP Alaska 127 (named after Collierís studio). By mid '85 the band had signed to Carrere Records for whom they recorded the Baby Blue Eyes single before moving back to Ram for the Fifth Amendment LP and Blown Away By Love single.
By the time the band signed to Revolver Records in mid 1986, Pat Collier had left to follow a successful -career in production and he was replaced by Noel Thompson (the band's sound engineer who they taught )ass in two weeks!) for the Vibrators Live LP. John Ellis left after this for session work though he is now a full time member of The Stranglers. Knox and Eddie then recruited bassist Mark Duncan and guitarist Mickie Owen and released the Recharged album and String Him Along single. This line-up of the band also recorded 1988's Meltdown album though by the 1990's Vicious Circle LP Owen had left and guitar on he album was supplied mainly by ex-Members six stringer Nigel Bennett.
Today The Vibrators are still regularly touring Europe and their latest studio album Hunting For You has seen them settle on a regular line-up of Knox, Eddie, Mark Duncan and Nigel Bennett.

Some notes by Jukka:

Question if Vibrators were orginally hippies (as some photos shows) or not was the question which lower bands crediblity in the hey days of punk and some people did think that they did jump in punk bandwagon when the time was right. But life after that has shown that they sure are punks from the heart.
Early Vibrators look was sort of glam-punk - lurex trousers, bright red winkle-pickers, etc. Lead singer Knox sported dark glasses with lurid pink frames.


We Vibrate / Whips & Furs (Rak RAK-245) 11/76
Pogo Dancing / Pose (with Chris Spedding; Rak RAK-246) 12/76
Bad Time / No Heart (Rak RAK-253) 3/77 ** NOTE: not issued
Baby Baby / Into the Future (Epic SPEC-5302 (USA)) 1/77
** LP ** Pure Mania (Epic EPC-82097; in USA Epic/Columbia 35038, different version from 'Such Sweetheart' and 'Bad Time'; later also as CD EPC-471409) 6/77
London Girls / London Girls (live) (promo; Epic) -77
London Girls (live) / Stiff Little Fingers (Epic SEPC-5565) 8/77
Automatic Lover / Destroy (Epic EPC-6137) 2/78
** LP ** V2 (CBS/Epic EPC-82495; later also as CD EPC-471408) 4/78
Judy Says / Pure Mania (Epic SEPC-6393) 5/78
** LP ** Batteries Included (compilation; CBS CBS-31840) 7/80
Gimme Some Lovin' / Power Cry (live) (Rat Race RAT 2) 2/80
Disco in Moscow / Take a Chance (Rat Race RAT 4) 1/80
** LP ** Guilty (Anagram GRAM-002) 1/82
Baby Baby (new version) / Dragnet (Anagram ANA-4) 11/82
Guilty / Hang Ten (Anagram ANA-8) 5/83
Mx America / Shadow Love (Ram RAM-7005) 11/83
Flying Home / Flash Flash Flash (RAM RAM-7007; also as 12" with bonustrack 'Mx America' RAM-7007T) -84
Flying Home / Punish Me with Kisses (Carrere CAR-329; also as 12" with bonustrack 'Mx America' CART-329) 5/84
** LP ** Alaska 127 (Ram RAM-LP-001; also as Carrere CAL-205; also as Anagram GRAM-002) 3/84
Baby Blue Eyes / Somnambulist (Dallcourt DC50110 (Canada)) 1/84
Baby Blue Eyes / Amphetamine Blues (Carrere CAR-338; also as 12" with bonustrack 'Flying High' CART-338) 7/84
Blown Away Be Love // The Demolishers (Ram CHP-7011; also as 12" with bonustrack 'Still Not Over You' RAM 12-CHP-7011 1/85
** LP ** Fifth Amendment (Ram CHP-LP-002) 1/85
** LP ** V Live (GMG 75019) -86
** LP ** Vibrators Live (Revolver REV-LP-85) 01/86
String Him Along / Disco in Moscow (live) (Revolver REV-45) 4/88
String Him Along / Every Day I Die A Little (Yellow EFA 02219) 1/88
** LP ** Recharged (Revolver REV-LP-101) 01/88
** CD ** Yeah Yeah Yeah (compilation; Repetoire RR4001-C (Germany) 6/88
** LP ** Meltdown (Revolver REV-LP-121; also as CD REV-XD-121) 11/88
Half Way to Paradise / Drive (Revolver REV-52) 1/90
Half Way to Paradise / Drive / The Demolisher / Still Not Over You (Revolver REVXD-52) 1/90
** LP ** Vicious Circle (Revolver REV-LP-135; also as CD REV-XD-135) 10/89
** LP ** Volume 10 (Revolver REV-LP-159; also as CD REV-XD-159) 10/90
** CD ** Power of Money (re-recorded compilation; Anagram CDGRAM-52) 3/93
** CD ** Live at the Marquee (Released Emotions REM-018CD) 5/93
** CD ** BBC in Concert (with the Boys) (Windsong WIND-CD-036) 10/93
** CD ** Guilty / Alaska (Anagram CDPUNK-16) 11/93
** CD ** Fifth Amendment / Recharged (Anagram CDPUNK-34) 4/94
** CD ** 1976-77 The Demoes (Dojo DOLECD-102) 10/94
** CD ** Hunting for You (Dojo DOJO-CD-179) 11/94
** CD ** Best of (same as Power of Money; Anagram CD PUNK 43) 8/95
** CD ** Meltdown / Vicious Circle (Anagram CDPUNK-58) 9/95
** CD ** Live at the Marquee 1977 (Dojo DOLE CD 110) 1/96
** CD ** Unpunked (acoustic compilation; Vibrators VIBES 001) 2/96
** CD ** The Independent Punk Singles Collection (Anagram Records CDPUNK-76) 5/96
** CD ** French Lessons with Correction (Anagram Records CDMGRAM-114)

Most important tracks on compilations:

DiY 1: Anarchy in the UK - UK Punk I (1976-77): Baby, Baby (Rhino Records R2 71171) -93

Vibrators links:

Vibrators - official page
Vibrators - Raw Power UK
Vibrators - Anagram releases
Vibrators - Baby Baby lyrics
Vibrators - Noise fore Heroes

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Created by JJu: March 13, 1996        Vibrators = Automatic Lover

Last Updated: March 1, 1999