Indelible Murtceps

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Indelible Murtceps
Also known as Murtceps
Origin Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Genres progressive rock, rock 'n' roll, pub rock
Years active 1971 (1971)–1973 (1973)
Labels EMI
Associated acts Spectrum, Ariel
Past members

The Indelible Murtceps were an Australian progressive rock and dance-pop band, which formed, as a side project of Spectrum, in October 1971. Sometimes referred to as the shortened name, Murtceps, they were "a stripped-back version... [that] could play anywhere and often." They worked the more lucrative dance and pub rock circuit. Whereas Spectrum performed in a full concert setting, commonly at larger venues, like the T.F. Much Ballroom, and at rock festivals.

The Indelible Murtceps' debut single, "Esmeralda", was issued in 1972, which peaked in the Go-Set National Top 40. It appeared ahead of their studio album, Warts Up Your Nose, in the following year, which made the top 20. Sometimes both groups shared a stage; both disbanded after a joint final gig at the Dallas Brooks Hall on 15 April 1973. The performance was included on a shared live double album, Terminal Buzz, which appeared in December that year.


The Indelible Murtceps were formed in Melbourne in October 1971 by Mike Rudd as a side project for his main group, Spectrum, using the same roster for both bands.[1] The line-up was Ray Arnott on drums, Lee Neale on keyboards, Bill Putt on bass guitar and Rudd on lead guitar, lead vocals and harmonica.[1][2] With the advent of pub rock Spectrum's lengthy and complex material was precluding bookings on the lucrative local dance and pub circuit.[2] Spectrum were performing in a full concert setting, using a large PA system and light show, sometimes augmented by a dance, performance troupe, The Tribe. They commonly appeared at larger venues, like the T.F. Much Ballroom, and at rock festivals.

Rudd created a performance set of simpler, dance-pop tunes, with a reduced stage set-up, for use by Indelible Murtceps, allowing Spectrum to continue its progressive course while supplementing members' incomes with the more frequent Murtceps gigs.[2] The name 'murtceps' is 'spectrum' written backwards. According to music journalist, Ed Nimmervoll, the Murtceps were "a stripped-back version... [that] could play anywhere and often."[2] Susan Moore of The Australian Women's Weekly recalled that Spectrum's "music was often regarded as 'progressive' and more for listening purposes, which didn't please dance audiences too much. So the band developed an alter ego which they called the Indelible Murtceps, who turned up when a dance band was required."[3]

In January 1972 they appeared at the inaugural Sunbury Pop Festival, with Spectrum providing a separate set.[1] Three live tracks by the Indelible Murtceps, "We are Indelible", "Be My Honey" and "But that's Alright", were issued on a various artists live album of the concert, Sunbury.[1] They were one of three bands featured on a short film, Australian Colour Diary, No.43: 3 Directions in Australian (1972), directed by Peter Weir, which provided "a sample of three trends in recent Australian pop music".[4]

During that year Murtceps recorded their debut album, Warts Up Your Nose, at Armstrong's Studios with Howard Gable as producer; it was released on 20 January 1973.[5] Most tracks have satirical, scatological and sexual themes.[5] According to Duncan Kimball of Milesago website the centrepiece is Rudd's epic 13-minute ode to marijuana, "Some Good Advice".[5] The album was packaged in a brown cardboard cover, intended to evoke the "plain brown wrapper" traditionally associated with pornographic publications.[5] By May 1972 they had released their debut single, "Esmeralda", which (like the song "Rene" by The Small Faces) was a light hearted ode to a prostitute.[6] The single version was different from the album version.[5] It peaked at No. 36 on the Go-Set National Top 40.[7]

In September 1972 Neale had a nervous breakdown and left, he was replaced by John Mills on keyboards.[1][5] Neale left the music industry.[5] The Indelible Murtceps released a second single, "Indelible Shuffle", from the album in June.[1] Ahead of the single, in March, Arnott announced he was leaving both groups and Rudd decided they would play their final gig at the Dallas Brooks Hall on 15 April 1973.[1][2] The performance appeared on the double live album, Terminal Buzz (December 1973), which was credited to both Indelible Murtceps and Spectrum.[1] Mills, Putt and Rudd co-founded a new group, Ariel; while Arnott joined Mighty Kong.[1]






  • Esmeralda (alternate version) / We Are Indelible (alternate version) (1972, as Indelible Murtceps)
  • Indelible Shuffle / Ray's Boogie (1973, as Indelible Murtceps)


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i McFarlane, Ian (1999). "Encyclopedia entry for 'Spectrum'". Encyclopedia of Australian Rock and Pop. Allen & Unwin. ISBN 1-86448-768-2. Archived from the original on 30 September 2004. Retrieved 12 March 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Nimmervoll, Ed. "Spectrum". Howlspace. White Room Electronic Publishing Pty Ltd. Archived from the original on 27 July 2009. Retrieved 12 March 2016. 
  3. ^ Moore, Susan (17 March 1982). "Moore on pop". The Australian Women's Weekly. 49 (39). p. 142. Retrieved 12 March 2016 – via National Library of Australia. 
  4. ^ Australian Commonwealth Film Unit; The Captain Matchbox Whoopee Band; Coffey, Jim; Edols, Michael; Indelible Murtceps; Weir, Peter; Wendy Saddington & Teardrop (1972), Australian Colour Diary, No. 43: 3 Directions in Australian Pop Music, National Library of Australia, retrieved 12 March 2016, Summary: Offers a sample of three trends in recent Australian pop music: the theatrical act of Wendy Saddington & Teardrop; the jug music of The Captain Matchbox Whoopee Band; and the popular rock group Indelible Murtceps. Credits: Producer, Malcolm Otton; director, Peter Weir; photographer, Michael Edols; editor, Jim Coffey .
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Kimball, Duncan (2007). "Spectrum / Indelible Murtceps". Milesago: Australasian Music and Popular Culture 1964–1975. Ice Productions. Archived from the original on 7 March 2008. Retrieved 13 March 2016. 
  6. ^ Cashmere, Paul (9 December 2015). "The Indelible Murtceps Warts up Your Nose Gets First Time CD Release". Noise11. Paul Cashmere, Ros O'Gorman. Retrieved 13 March 2016. 
  7. ^ Nimmervoll, Ed (3 June 1972). "National Top 40". Go-Set. Waverley Press. Retrieved 13 March 2016. 

External links[edit]