The early lineup included 2nd vocalist Owen Conroy who appears on the Hip City Boogaloo tracks and the Gunpowders LP. He left the band in 1985. The official reason given for his leaving was the usual musical differences but in fact he was asked to leave the band. He says "The band had a potential deal with IRS records in the USA but the company told the bands management that they couldn't market a band with two lead vocalists." Some members of the music press suggested more sinister reasons. Conroy was asked if he would switch to backing vocalist to remain part of the band but he refused and so he left.
Original drummer Ray Rowland plays on the Hip City Boogaloo tracks. He was replaced by Hughie Gallagher, who was the band's drummer up until his sudden death at the end of 1985. Mark A.Sheppard (drums), born in London of Irish-German parentage, then became the drummer and appears on the 2nd LP. He'd previously played with The Barracudas and Robyn Hitchcock.
Pete Holidai of The Radiators joined the band in 1986, adding breadth to their sound; he also appears on the 2nd LP. Work began on a third LP in 1987-88. Producer Tony Platt mentions engineering & co-producing this on his website.
Lead singer Thomas McLaughlin left shortly after the recording of the 3rd LP
had finished in May 1988, allegedly after an argument about his level of commitment
to the band in light of strenuous touring commitments being considered for a tour of the USA.
This left the band with the task of finding a new frontman and the dilemma of whether
to re-recorded the vocals, but Siren/Virgin were unwilling to invest any more in recording.
This situation dragged on for a few months.
(ex Perfect Crime)
was considered but in the end the job went to Ken Duffy
(ex The Experiment), who
joined in August 1988. Unfortunately LABF's A&R man at Siren Ross Stapleton left
the label, adding uncertainty to LABF's future. Holidai and Sheppard both left in Feburary 1989,
sounding the death knell for the band sometime after a short-lived name change to The Believers
with an ex roadie on drums.
The 3rd LP never came out.
The original lineup is shown above. The second LP lineup was Thomas McLaughlin (vocals), Pete Dench (guitar), Pete Holidai (guitar, joined 1986), Neville Seventeen (keyboards, who joined early 1986), Pat Diskin (bass) and Mark Sheppard (drums). Mark Sheppard later formed School of Fish and is now a TV actor. Thomas McLaughlin is now better known as a writer and dramatist. Pete Holidai is back with the reformed Radiators. Ken Duffy formed Nijinsky with his brother Vincent on bass, Tosh Flood on guitar, and Joey Stamp on drums; they later became Saville (1995-2001?).
See also Videos page.
Notes: PS incorrectly says HWS 853, some corrected with sticker
Notes: Pete Holidai appears on some tracks
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