The Battered Wives

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Battered Wives was a Canadian punk rock band from Toronto, active during the late 1970s. The group was spawned on Queen Street West. It consisted of Toby Swann (guitar, voice), Colin Fox (drums, mayhem), and Robert Stewart (bass, voice). The whole idea was to turn it up to ten and saw the knobs off. Colin got deported from Canada for various reasons and the band lost a lot of its momentum, until Toby reformed it with a new line-up.

The reformed Battered Wives consisted of Toby Swann (guitar and vocals), Larry "Jasper" Klassen (bass and vocals), John Gibb (guitar) and Cleave Anderson (drums), and released their first eponymous album in 1978. This spawned the hit singles "Daredevil", "Suicide", "Lover's Balls", and "Uganda Stomp (Bomp Idi Bomp)", which poked fun at the Ugandan dictator Idi Amin.

Their second album was released in 1979 and titled Cigarettes. They acquiesced to complaints from the public, shortening their name to simply 'The Wives' for this album. The most notable songs from this album was "New Wave Robot", and Cigarettes won a Juno for best record design.

They released Live On Mother's Day in 1980, inserting the 'Battered' back into their name. This album was marred with lawsuits from various record companies and did not really see the light of day, even though it was probably the best of all three. Then, the group broke up. Anderson worked with Blue Rodeo, replaced by Patrick Mooney. Swann went solo, releasing a cover of "Over the Rainbow" on his 1981 album Lullabies in Razorland. Klassen is still working as recording artist in Toronto.

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