Exploding White Mice

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Exploding White Mice
Origin Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
Genres Punk-pop
Years active 1983 (1983)–1999 (1999)
Labels Greasy Pop, Festival, Bigtime, Normal, Shock, Au Go Go, Bastard
Past members Paul Gilchrist
Andy MacQueen
Gerry Barrett
Craig Rodda
Jeff Stephens
David Bunney
Dave Mason
Jack Jacomos
Andrew Bunney

Exploding White Mice were an Australian punk-pop band from Adelaide which formed in 1983 with Paul Gilchrist on vocals, Andy MacQueen on bass guitar, Gerry Barrett on guitar, Craig Rodda on drums and Giles Barrow on rhythm guitar. In 1984 Barrett was replaced by Jeff Stephens on guitar – later also on lead vocals. In 1985 Rodda was replaced on drums by David Bunney. The group released four studio albums, Brute Force and Ignorance (August 1988), Exploding White Mice (1990), Collateral Damage (1992) and We Walk Alone (1994). The band toured Europe twice before disbanding in April 1999.

History[edit]

Exploding White Mice were formed in 1983 in Adelaide when Paul Gilchrist on vocals played a one-off show as a cover band at a party with Andy MacQueen on bass guitar (ex-The Deviants, Crunch Pets), Gerry Barrett on guitar (Del Webb Explosion) and Craig Rodda on drums (Screaming Believers).[1] The band's name was taken from a scene in the 1979 film Rock 'n' Roll High School, where a laboratory mouse spontaneously explodes upon exposure to music by The Ramones. Aside from The Ramones other major influences include Radio Birdman, MC5, The Stooges, Johnny Thunders and American 1960s garage punk.[1][2] The party gig went so well that the group decided to play regularly. One show was attended by Giles Barrow, who joined on rhythm guitar. In 1984 they started a residency at the Cathedral Hotel. Barrett left near year's end and was replaced on guitar by Jeff Stephens (Firm Grip, Spitfire, Tombstone Shadow).[1][3]

Initially Exploding White Mice were a covers band, then they began working on original tunes. In 1985 after adding David Bunney on drums (Zippy & the Coneheads), they released a six-track extended play, A Nest of Vipers, on Australia's Greasy Pop Records. It was produced by Kim Horne. Also in 1985 their track, "Down on the Street" appeared on the label's compilation album, An Oasis in a Desert of Noise.[4] In 1986 Sydney rock publication, RAM, named Nest of Vipers as the best Australian record of the year.[3] The record was issued in the US on Bigtime Records, renamed as In the Nest of Vipers, but despite selling several thousand copies, the group received no royalties as Bigtime became insolvent soon after.[5] During 1986 and 1987 the group regularly toured major Australian cities and put out 7" singles. In March 1987 they issued the single, "Blaze of Glory" with a B-side being a cover of John Kongos' hit, "He's Gonna Step On You Again".[1][6] In August 1988 they issued their debut LP, Brute Force and Ignorance, which had been recorded and engineered by Cran Wilton at Soundworks Studios in Kent Town. Shortly before its release, Barrow left and was replaced by Dave Mason, formerly of Primevils. In 1989 Jack Jacomos replaced Mason in turn.

In 1990 the group toured Europe[3][5] and released a half-studio, half-live self-titled LP on Normal Records. Shortly after, Gilchrist left and Stephens took over on lead vocals. In early 1991 they began recording a new album, Collateral Damage, again at Soundworks Studios. However, when the Greasy Pop label went out of business that year, they could not find a local distributor and released it in 1992 on Normal Records in Germany and NKVD Records in the United States. David's brother Andrew Bunney (Zippy and the Coneheads) joined on rhythm guitar. The group's final album was 1994's We Walk Alone, on Au Go Go Records, Lucky Records (US), Subway (Europe) and 12" LP Rock & Roll Inc 008 (Spain). The group had a cameo appearance on John Winter's 1994 film The Roly Poly Man portraying a "punk-rock bar-band from Hell".[1] In 1995 they re-released Nest of Vipers with bonus tracks on Bastard Records. In 1996 they issued a single, "Prepare to Die", toured Europe with German band, The Richies. Exploding White Mice disbanded in April 1999.[7]

After disbandment[edit]

From 1985, Gerry Bennett joined Dust Collection – a psychedelic and garage-punk covers band – which performed a 25th anniversary gig in September 2009.[8][9] In 1997, Andrew Bunney co-produced a five-track EP, Loose, for Adelaide-based punk rockers, The Gels, which was issued on Bastard Records.[10] In 2002 Jeff Stephens co-produced two tracks for The Gels' five-track EP, Somebody Someday.[11] In August 2003, Stephens co-produced that group's debut album, Never Mind the Title, Here's The Gels, which was launched in November.[12][13] The track, "We Don't Get no Radio Play" featured an excerpt from Exploding White Mice's "Enemies".[12]

As of March 2012, Jack Jacomos worked as a mental health nurse.

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Extended plays[edit]

Singles[edit]

  • "Blaze of Glory" b/w "He's Gonna Step on You Again" (7" single, 1987)[6]
  • "Fear (Late at Night)" b/w "Without Warning" (7" single, 1988)
  • "Breakdown Number 2" b/w "Bury Me" (7" single, 1989)
  • "Make It" b/w "Ain't It Sad" (7" single, 1989)[7]
  • "I Just Want My Fun" b/w "First Time Is the Best Time", "Do the Crunch" (7" single, 1990) No.90 AUS[14]
  • "Prepare to Die" b/w "51st State" / "Zero" (7" single 1996)

References[edit]

General
Specific
  1. ^ a b c d e McFarlane, 'Exploding White Mice' entry. Archived from the original on 8 July 2004. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
  2. ^ Goldman, Marlene. "Exploding White Mice". Trouser Press. Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c Gardner, Steve (Winter 1993). "Exploding White Mice article No. 1". Noise for Heroes. Divine Rites Records (Didier Georgieff) (22). Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  4. ^ "An Oasis in a Desert of Noise [sound recording]". Music Australia. National Library of Australia. 7 November 2007. Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  5. ^ a b Gardner, Steve (Winter 1993). "Exploding White Mice article No. 2". Noise for Heroes. Divine Rites Records (Didier Georgieff) (22). Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "'Blaze of Glory' / Jeff Stephens ; [performed by] the Exploding White Mice. 'He's Gonna Step On You Again' / Kongos – Demetriou ; [performed by] the Exploding White Mice [sound recording]". Music Australia. National Library of Australia. 8 April 2009. Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  7. ^ a b "'Make It' – Exploding White Mice". SA Memory. State Library of South Australia. Government of South Australia. Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  8. ^ McFarlane, 'The Garden Path' entry. Archived from the original on 10 July 2004. Retrieved 2 April 2012.
  9. ^ "Artist, Dust Collection". South Australian Contemporary Music Company Ltd (Daniel Randell). 29 September 2009. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  10. ^ "Loose [sound recording] / The Gels". Music Australia. National Library of Australia. 24 February 1998. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  11. ^ "Somebody Someday [sound recording] / The Gels". Music Australia. National Library of Australia. 30 July 2003. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  12. ^ a b "Never Mind the Title, Here's The Gels [sound recording] / The Gels". Music Australia. National Library of Australia. 16 October 2003. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  13. ^ Jones, Steve (October 2003). "Interviews – The Gels". dB Magazine (316). Keirron Stach. Archived from the original on 2004-01-22. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  14. ^ a b c Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book Ltd. ISBN 0-64611-917-6.  Note: Used for Australian Singles and Albums charting from 1974 until Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) created their own charts in mid-1988. In 1992, Kent back calculated chart positions for 1970–1974.
  15. ^ "Exploding White Mice [sound recording] / Exploding White Mice". Music Australia. National Library of Australia. 28 July 1995. Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  16. ^ "Collateral Damage [sound recording] / Exploding White Mice". Music Australia. National Library of Australia. 8 August 1995. Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  17. ^ "We Walk Alone [sound recording] / Exploding White Mice". Music Australia. National Library of Australia. 1 May 1997. Retrieved 31 March 2012. 
  18. ^ "A Nest of Vipers [sound recording] / Exploding White Mice". Music Australia. National Library of Australia. 7 November 2007. Retrieved 31 March 2012.