Information about Claire

Throbbing all the way from Minsk to Miami

The band Claire is not named after a girl, the band is named after a planet. Claire is a five-piece noise. Somewhere between a throb and a drone, sometimes very fast, occasionally very slow. Usually in ‘E’, but Claire does flirt with other notes too.

Formed in response to the construction of Milton Keynes in 1983, you might have heard them on John Peel in session during the eighties, if not – no fear as they reformed in 2014 with the release of their long awaited 8 track LP Maxi Power Bulge. New material now being performed and some new personel too. Claire have throbbed all the way from Minsk to Miami in their time but are currently distracted by other stuff.


Present Line-up

Vocals, synth, noise – Ben Suttey
Vocals, Guitar, Laptop – Ian Wilson
Guitar – Peter Devine
Bass – Ian Williams
Drums – Andy Williams


Extended family

Ian Wilkie – Metal
Bradley McEwan – Management
Mick McCarthy – Management
Dave Barr – Management
Tony Jeakins – Metal
Jason Chalk – Metal
Chris Edwards – Metal
Keith ? – Guitar

TIMELINE

Wanna join my band?: 1983 – 1985

  • Autumn 1983 – Band forms – Ian Wilson meets Peter Devine – shared musical taste
  • Early gigs in a young unfinished city – metal bashing… unformed sound…
  • Autumn 1984 – Record first demo: Buckingham, Ian Wilson, Peter Devine, Ian Williams, Andy Williams, Jason Chalk
  • Radio interview – CRMK – hype – Berlin tour – power and emotion
  • Summer 1985 – Second demo: BugBrooke, Ian Wilson, Peter Devine, Ian Williams, Andy Williams, Tony Jeakins

End of the beginning: 1985 – 1987

  • Rehearsals at the The Point – 1986 – every Sunday and Monday night free of charge ‘cus Nod was a very kewl guy.
  • Third demo: Buckingham, Ian Wilson, Peter Devine, Ian Williams, Ian Wilkie – Futures Looking Brighter – Sent to John Peel (Fig 4)
  • Countapoint – lots of gig activity
  • 23/05/1987 – Countapoint (Fig 5)
  • 14/07/87 – Peel Session, Ian Wilson, Peter Devine, Ian Williams, Andy Williams, Ian Wilkie (Fig 7)
  • Brickhill Woods, Summer woodland party gig – shooting, police arrive while band are on stage… local newspaper front page
  • 4th Demo: Buckingham, Ian Wilson, Peter Devine, Ian Williams, Andy Williams, Ian Wilkie – The Future is Grim (Fig 6)
  • 02/09/1987 – Pitz gig – Ian the wild man! (Fig 1)
  • 03/09/1987 – Five 0 Club – Luton – death threats (Fig 2) (Fig 3)
  • 12/09/87 – Mark Refoy (Spiritualised) visits Countapoint – stated the attendance is in his top ten gigs
  • 10. Clare (sic), The Compass Club, Bletchley 1987 – see below!

I went to see a Northampton group called The Apple Creation (Jonny Mattock on drums) support a group called Clare(sic) from Milton Keynes. Clare (sic) had a totally nuts singer who jumped onto the venue floor and pushed himself around on his back from one side of the room to the other, screaming into the mic at the same time. The band had their backs to the audience and played as if it all was completely normal. They were fantastic but I never heard of them again. I think they did a Peel session, does anyone know anything else about this band?
Ref: https://spiritualized.band/viewtopic.php?t=9846

The beginning of the end: 1988 – 1989

  • 06/12/87 – Driffield recording session – one Claire track included on box set LP release
  • Jan 1988 – Move to Peckham, South East London
  • Gig with Lush – Tuesday May 2nd 1988, Back to the Planet – Autumn 1988
  • Peckham Dolehouse rehearsals, Camberwell rehearsals, Brixton rehearsals
  • 4th April and 17th May 1989 – Record Maxi Power Bulge, Ian Wilson, Peter Devine, Ian Williams, Andy Williams, Chris Edwards
  • No money, no food, squats… grim lives…
  • Split

25 years later: 2014 – 2017

  • Peter decides to commit Maxi Power Bulge to vinyl as a personal project
  • Seeks permission form other ex-members – Claire reforms as a result of consultation
  • Ben Suttey replaces Ian on vocals – Ian moves over to samples, effects and keyboards
  • Gigs – highlight supporting Lydia Lunch in Manchester
  • Andy decides to stop – band goes on a second extended break

Images

Figure 1

Figure 1 – Claire review of the Pitz gig

Figure 2 – Claire at Lutons Five – 0 venue

Figure 4 – Review of claire cassette release Futures Looking Brighter (which we sent to John Peel) in Spot fanzine. Sold on Bobs records CMK.

Example of Claire / Countapoint poster

Figure 6 – Cassette art for Future is Grim – pessimistic Claire response to life after Peel session.

Figure 7 – Screen shot of now defunct BBC web page listing Claire peel session.

2 Comments

  1. Just discovered your vinyl (#116) at a charity shop on the Upper East Side of Manhattan for $1. Best deal I’ve gotten since I found, The Electric Guitars – Wolfman Tap Extended 45 there. It very much resonates with me, glad it came into my life, sent it too my fellow weirdo music folks Thankeee thankeee,

    All the very-brusk

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