The CUD story part 6

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Bob ‘JR’ Dobbs makes an early live appearence. Supporting ATV, Leeds Astoria, 12 Sept 1987
Check William’s trousers!

26 Jun 1987
Live at Leeds Poly. Our degree shows still up, we were moving on from BAs to PAs. Carl never finished his degree. After failing an assessment he returned for a final year but never completed his thesis on Macbeth.

26 Jun 1987
Live at Leeds Poly. Our degree shows still up, we were moving on from BAs to PAs. Carl never finished his degree. After failing an assessment he returned for a final year but never completed his thesis on Macbeth.

30 Jun 1987
The first broadcast of our Peel session should have been a joyous occasion. We all turned up with tape decks to listen and record the session together. But the event was overshadowed by the horrifying news that Andy Beresford, fellow Fine Artist and the extrovert accordian player in Ritzen Ratzen Rotzer had climbed a warehouse roof after a party and slid off onto some railings where his arm was severed. He survived after an hour waiting for help and remained chipper, though dangerous with his new metal claw.
Peel seemed to like the session and our unpompous surnames (so we never changed them). The mix sounded fantastic. We felt immensely proud. A Peel session scored – many a band’s aspiration. But now we had to find a new one…

13 Jul 1987
Live session for BBC Radio Leeds, ‘On the Rocks’.
(You’re the Boss/Mind the Gap/Make No Bones/Don’t Bank On It/Van Van Van* (adapted from a tune Mike played with The Children)/You Sexy Thing)
We had a false start as William broke a string on the first note. At this stage, we only had one guitar each and not a tuner between us. Tune ups took place on stage, bass against guitar and any broken strings that couldn’t be ignored meant a long pause for a change.

* This version of ‘Van Van Van’ is included on the 2007 reissue of ‘When in Rome, Kill Me’

20 Jul 1987
Repeat broadcast of the Peel session. More money in the bank and it’s time to spend.

The first single sleeve.
The background is the view of Morrisons and the Merrion Centre walking from Leeds Poly (Metro Uni). William went with a sell-sell packaging design with the 2-colour sleeve.

23, 24, (remix on 27) Jul 1987
Record first single at Offbeat Studios, Leeds.
In retrospect we should have released the Peel Session, or even the demo that got us the gig. Instead we blew all the money we’d made so far off the Peel session (about £300) to go 24-track for a the 12″ ep the Wedding Present said we could release.

We didn’t get an experienced or cool engineer for the session, but, as far as we could tell, the owner. William had ambitions to make one side a ‘long dance mix’ of ‘You’re the Boss’. And rather than record it that way, the engineer suggested gluing two bits together. With no click tracks or computer technology, we had to cover the bad, out-of-time join with a sample of a garage door closing. The naff sample dialogue used at the beginning “Get ready to jump out of your skin” came from the same CD and swiftly wore out its novelty value. Alas, it is cut into vinyl for posterity, albeit on a mere 1,000 copies.


atvreview.jpg The mixes of Mind the Gap, Van Van Van and You’re the Boss were inferior to those recorded elsewhere, but for a while, we were proud of our achievement. We dressed it up in a shouty sleeve designed by William and got the 007 number from Reception.

First live reviews (left and above).
“The Bash Street Kids play Earth,
Wind and Fire”. Like that.

9 Sep 1987
Our first gig outside Leeds, thanks to the Weddoes, as their support at Boxes, Exeter. We were pleasantly surprised to discover we were already familiar from the Peel broadcasts (played three times already!)

12 Sep 1987
Live at Leeds Astoria, supporting ATV. William played bass with ATV for their soundtrack.

28 Sep 1987
The first single, ‘Mind the Gap’ released. In the window of Jumbo Records.

7 Oct 1987
Live at Leeds Twilight Square (with the Empty Hearts, whose letters fell off the original poster art below).

Cud’s second gig outside Leeds, thanks to The Wedding Present, as a support at London’s ULU, 16 October 1987, two weeks after our first single release. Still wearing T-shirts (Leeds Where & When magazine) and (mostly) keeping our hair short.

16 Oct 1987
Live at Leeds Poly with the Wedding Present again, plus the Brilliant Corners (video above).

18 Oct 1987
Live at Sir George Robey, London (with Illustrious Cutlery).

24 Oct 1987
Live at Hull Adelphi (with Death by Milkfloat) (Love those 80s indie names?)


Photo taken for first NME interview Oct 1987, in the days when we would all look at the camera. Where did Mike get that cardy?

25 Oct 1987
First NME interview, with John Tague. See below.
There seemed to quite a momentum going, with several gigs in one month, reviews and interviews cropping up. William was still dealing with the management side at this point. His home phone number and address appeared on the Mind the Gap single sleeve.

The first NME piece, with a typically title punned title.

30 Oct 1987
Live at the AEU Club, Hailfax

5 Nov 1987
Indoors fireworks.
Live at the Astoria, Leeds (with AC Temple, Dog Faced Hermans and Jackdaw with Crowbar). So, at the time, our choice of name was not unusual, even unimaginative!
At this gig, Mike announced to the band that he was to become a father. Thankfully he didn’t also decide to quit for a real job.


10 Dec 1987
And so the first proper, successful year ends with a Reception Records package at the place it all started, Leeds Poly. On the bill, The Wedding Present, This Poison, Cud. (see above).

Continue to Part 7