13 Engines

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13 Engines
OriginToronto, Ontario, Canada
GenresAlternative rock
Years active1985–1997
LabelsSBK/Capitol, EMI, Atlantic, Nocturnal Records
Past membersJohn Critchley
Grant Ethier
Jim Hughes
Mike Robbins

13 Engines was a Canadian alternative rock band active in the 1980s and 1990s.

Overview[edit]

Formed in 1985 as The Ikons, the band consisted of four York University students: vocalist and songwriter John Critchley,[1] guitarist and songwriter Mike Robbins, bassist Jim Hughes and drummer Grant Ethier.[2] They released a self-titled independent cassette in 1986 before changing their name to 13 Engines. This name was a reference to the automobile industry in Windsor, Ontario and Detroit, Michigan, which were the first markets to embrace the band.[3][4][5]

They spent a lot of time in Michigan and recorded their first two albums there--Before Our Time[6] in 1987 and Byram Lake Blues[7] in 1989; both were released by the UK label Nocturnal Records. One song from Byram Lake Blues, "Beached",[8] became a college hit and, in 1990, the band was signed to SBK Records in the United States and EMI in Canada.[4]

In 1991, 13 Engines released their major label debut, A Blur to Me Now, which was produced by David Briggs and John Hanlon.[9][10] The band received airplay for the album's singles "King of Saturday Night"[11] and "Big Surprise".[12] SBK dropped them soon afterward,[4] although it did release an EP called Ignition which was the top singles from the band's next album.

That album was 1993's Perpetual Motion Machine,[13][14] which was produced by Critchley and released on Atlantic Records.[15] This album was the band's breakthrough in Canada, spawning the hit singles "More",[16] "Bred in the Bone"[17] and "Smoke & Ashes",[18] and led to a spot on The Tragically Hip's Another Roadside Attraction tour.[citation needed] The band also played festivals and toured with Blind Melon, The Watchmen, Moist, The Tea Party and Jane's Addiction.[19]

They followed up in 1995 with Conquistador,[20] which gave them another hit, Beneath My Hand.[21][4] While the album is considered to be 13 Engines' finest work, it did not do well commercially.[22]

In 1996, Nocturnal Records released the band's compilation album, Perfect Largeness: The Nocturnal Years.[23]

In June 1997, the band performed during NXNE, performing songs from a finished album. However, the album was never released and the band broke up that year.

In 2017, the Canadian label Artoffact Records released some of the band's singles on an EP called Brave New Waves Session.[24]

Post-breakup[edit]

Following the break-up of 13 Engines, Critchley continued as a solo artist and, in 2000, recorded the album Crooked Mile.[25] Critchley, Ethier[26] and Hughes[27] went on to careers as producers.

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • The Ikons (as The Ikons) (1986), Independent[28]
  • Before Our Time (1987), Nocturnal Records, Resonance (Europe)
  • Byram Lake Blues (1989), Nocturnal Records
  • A Blur to Me Now (1991), (SBK/Capitol)
  • Perpetual Motion Machine (1993), Atlantic Records, SBK/Capitol, EMI Canada
  • Conquistador (1995), EMI Canada, Nettwerk Records
  • Perfect Largeness: The Nocturnal Years (Compilation) (1996), Nocturnal Records

EPs[edit]

  • Ignition (1993), SBK/Capitol, EMI Canada[29]
  • Brave New Waves Session (2017), Artoffact Records

EPs & Singles[edit]

  • "Beached" (1989), Nocturnal Records
  • "Big Surprise" (1991), SBK/Capitol
  • "King Of Saturday Night" (1991), SBK/Capitol
  • "More" (1993), EMI Canada, Atlantic Records
  • "Smoke And Ashes" (1993), EMI Canada, Atlantic Records
  • "Bred In The Bone" (1993), EMI Canada, Atlantic Records
  • "Beneath My Hand" (1995), EMI Canada[30]
  • "Personal Golam" / "Waterfall (1995), EMI Canada[31]
  • "Tailpipe Blues" (1995), EMI Canada[32]
  • "Slow" (1995), EMI Canada[33]

Compilation Inclusions[edit]

  • Scoop This (1993), EMI Canada[34]
  • Heal It - A Canadian Compilation (1994), EMI Canada[35]
  • Have Not Been The Same: The CanRock Renaissance (2012), Pheromone Recordings[36]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "John Critchley Archives".
  2. ^ Hendra, Peter. "Always sharing and caring, Oct 18, 2017". thewhig.com. The Kingston Whig Standard. Retrieved 2021-09-03.
  3. ^ "13 Engines". canpopencyclopedia.home.blog. The Canadian Pop Music Encyclopedia. 14 March 2019. Retrieved 2021-09-03.
  4. ^ a b c d "13 Engines". Canadian Pop Encyclopedia. Canoe Inc. Archived from the original on 2013-01-15. Retrieved 2007-12-22.
  5. ^ Robbins, Ira. "13 Engines". trouserpress.com. Trouser Press. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  6. ^ "13 Engines - Before Our Time". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 2021-09-03.
  7. ^ "13 Engines - Byram Lake Blues". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 2021-09-03.
  8. ^ "13 Engines - Beached". youtube.com. YouTube. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  9. ^ "13 Engines – A Blur To Me Now". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  10. ^ "13 Engines - A Blur to Me Now, Full Album". youtube.com. YouTube. Retrieved 2021-09-03.
  11. ^ "King Of Saturday Night - 13 Engines". youtube.com. YouTube. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  12. ^ "Big Surprise". youtube.com. YouTube. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  13. ^ "13 Engines – Perpetual Motion Machine". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  14. ^ Gibson, Kevin. "A Clean Running Machine, March 1994". louisvillemusicnews.net. Louisville Music News. Retrieved 2021-09-04.
  15. ^ "ArtistDirect" review of Perpetual Motion Machine
  16. ^ "13 Engines – More". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  17. ^ "13 Engines – Bred In The Bone". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  18. ^ "13 Engines – Smoke & Ashes". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  19. ^ "13 Engines's Concert History". concertarchives.org. Concert Archives. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  20. ^ "13 Engines - Conquistador (Full Album)". youtube.com. YouTube. Retrieved 2021-09-04.
  21. ^ "13 Engines--Beneath My Hand". youtube.com. YouTube. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  22. ^ "ArtistDirect" review of Conquistador
  23. ^ "13 Engines – Perfect Largeness: The Nocturnal Years". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  24. ^ "13 Engines – Brave New Waves Session". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  25. ^ Carruthers, Sean. "John Critchley - Crooked Mile". allmusic.com. AllMusic. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  26. ^ "Grant Ethier". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  27. ^ "Jim Hughes". allmusic.com. AllMusic. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  28. ^ "The Ikons – The Ikons". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  29. ^ "13 Engines – Ignition". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  30. ^ "13 Engines – Beneath My Hand". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  31. ^ "13 Engines – Personal Golem / Waterfall". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  32. ^ "13 Engines – Tailpipe Blues". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  33. ^ "13 Engines – Slow". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  34. ^ "Scoop This". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  35. ^ "Heal It - A Canadian Compilation". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  36. ^ "Have Not Been The Same: The CanRock Renaissance". discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 1 January 2022.