No Night Sweats N o  N i g h t  S w e a t s No Night Sweats
Sydney's Post-Punk Bands
I Like Music
Slapp Happy are Terrific
A List of CDs
Text is What I Write
Crime Fiction is Silly
[ Wild West ]
Gordon concentrato whilst Phil barely stands

The post punk landscape slowly changed in Sydney at the beginning of the 80s with more emphasis being placed on melody and rhythm. More funk, less experimentation and so on. Wild West eased into this nexus with a taut style and a tidy little group dynamic.

However, we couldn't think of a name that we all liked. It started off as "Grab A Guitar" (my personal favourite) and mutated through "God The Movie", "Grab a Garage" and "God the Movie" (again) until we sort of decided upon "Wild West" which, if not actively liked, seemed not to offend anyone too much.

The sound of the band was unique without being startling. Peter's jangly, intricate guitar flitted around Gordon's liquid, pneumatic bass lines and Phil's simplistic chords and sometimes grating synth riffs. Peter Macgregor added a necessary driving force although we all felt that those beloved roto-toms were a bit much. Eventually Rae joined with some surprisingly elegant and playful synth motifs.

Gordon still concentrating, Rae chatting

 We released the "Beat The Drought" EP in 1980 containing "Calling The House" (a somewhat hypnotic and graceful 5/4 that garnered high rotation on 2JJ for quite a while); "Chinchilla" (a mesmerizing verse drone with a punchy two note chorus); "We Can Do" (sort of shouted funk with a climactic chorus change and a pots and pans percussion ending based on "Don't Stop Till You Get Enough") and "Red Sea" (a slightly experimental 3 section piece with buzzing synths and a lovely short bass 'solo' at the end).

Peter M left soon after this (to do a more African thing?) - drummers were always such a problem. He was replaced for a time by Dave Weston, the extra physical drummer from Newcastle's Pel Mel whose style was dissimilar to Peter's but still muscular. Around this time we continued performing including a great night supporting The Birthday Party at the Cell Block in Darlinghurst - possibly one of our rockier evenings.

Peter N (mouth agape) and Peter M (flailing)

Dave's increasingly heavy duties in extending the burgeoning Pel Mel popularity forced him to finally leave poor old us in the lurch once again.

I seem to recall that we decided to keep it all fairly open at this stage with more reliance on smaller splinter groups whilst still keeping the Wild West name alive somehow. There were a large number of 'Little' bands around at this time including The Tame Omearas, Via Veneto and others who were all somewhat aligned to the Pel Mel/Wild West axis. Lindsay Omeara joined us for drumming duties and even I had a simplistic go at them as well on one song.

A large M-Squared recording happened around this time, most of which never saw the light of day including the tracks "Disappear", "New Associations", "Bhagwan Rhumba" and "Fascistic". Here's a list of all the songs...

Peter left to go overseas late in 1981 and that, finally, was that. Gordon continued on with Rod and others in Hope Is A New Coat and Moral Fibro; Rae and Lindsay joined forces for You Peghead You; and various people reconvened with new found friends for Maestros and Dipso. And I played to an adoring audience of a 4 track tape deck before joining Patrick in No Night Sweats.

This site has been visited  times