The Distractions are a British punk rock/New Wave band from ManchesterEngland.

History[edit source | editbeta]Edit

The band was originally formed in 1975 by college friends Mike Finney (vocals) and Steve Perrin (guitar),[1] alongside Lawrence Tickle (bass) and Tony Trappe (drums).[2]

The band changed tack with the advent of punk in 1977 and Finney and Perrin recruited a new line-up of Pip Nicholls (bass), Adrian Wright (guitar), and Alec Sidebottom (drums, formerly of The Purple Gang), now mixing punk rock with sixties influences.[1][3]

They shared bills with the likes of BuzzcocksMagazine and Joy Division, and their debut EPYou're Not Going Out Dressed Like That, released in 1979, led to a deal with Factory Records, who released the follow-up, Time Goes By So Slow.[3][4] In a 1979 newsletter, Tony Wilson described the band: "Reminds the management of AustinTexas 66, but take your choice".[5]

The band had already signed a deal with Island Records in September 1979, before the Factory single was released, according to Wilson "due to irresistible desire to play the game".[5] Two further singles were issued – It Doesn't Bother Me and Boys Cry before the release of Nobody's Perfect, the groups first album that, ultimately, received significantly more media plaudits than it achieved sales.[6]

Shortly after the album's release Perrin quit the band to be replaced by former Ludus guitarist, Arthur Kadmon. The group continued to tour (including playing shows in New York) but eventually disbanded in 1981.[1][3] Before their end, the band included another latter member, Debbie Shure.[7]

After the band imploded, Finney went on to work with the Secret Seven and the Art of Noise; Kadmon played briefly with The Fall and later went to work in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, who released a single in 1987; Pip Nicholls went to play drums in Glass Animals, alongside Miaow singer Cath Carroll.[8] while Sidebottom founded and continues to lead the Republic of Swing samba band.

During early 2010, Finney and Perrin revisited material that had been recorded during a brief reunion in the late '90s (when they also played selected shows in Manchester and Liverpool) resulting in their Black Velvet EP which was released via Occultation Recordings.

Perrin and Finney were back in the studio in June 2010 to record new material – this time for a 12" vinyl EP, Come Home featuring "Lost", "Nicole" and "Oil Painting". The session was recorded at Parr Street Studios, Liverpool and engineered by Rich Turvey of The Wild Swans, who also played guitar and keys. Stuart Mann played drums on the recording, which was issued by Occultation in November 2010.

The following summer, and following some geographically-challenged songwriting, Perrin and Finney alongside Arash Torabi (The June Brides), Mike Kellie (Spooky Tooth / The Only Ones) together with producer Nick Halliwell (The Granite Shore) entered a studio in Exeter. Four days later, they'd cut the basic tracks for a new Distractions album; at that time simply entitled 2.

The Distractions' second album, The End Of The Pier was released by Occultation in August 2012. At the same point, the group played their only UK dates of the year – two shows in Salford.

Discography[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Singles/EPs[edit source | editbeta]Edit

  • You're Not Going Out Dressed Like That EP:
  • Doesn't Bother Me/Nothing* b/w *Maybe It's Love/Too Young* (1979) TJM
  • Time Goes By So Slow b/w Pillow Fight (1979) Factory
  • It Doesn't Bother Me b/w "One Way Love (1980) Island
  • Boys Cry b/w Paracetamol Paralysis (1980) Island
  • Something For The Weekend b/w What's The Use? (1980) Island
  • And Then There's... EP: "24 Hours" b/w "Ghost Of A Chance/Love Is Not For Me" (1981) That (UK indie No. 47)[9]
  • Black Velvet EP: "Black Velvet", "Still It Doesn't Ring", "If You Were Mine" (2010) Occultation Recordings
  • Come Home EP: "Lost", "Nicole", "Oil Painting" (2010) Occultation Recordings

Albums[edit source | editbeta]Edit

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