Lazarus Clamp

~ Group

Wikipedia

Lazarus Clamp are an English band of some longevity and interest, who can make a reasonable claim to being one of the minor, undiscovered, rough-cut gems of British independent music - but who probably have only themselves to blame for their low profile. Formed in Leicester in 1994, the band's early intensity (angular, noisy, post-hardcore influences were the most evident at this point) and musical ambition (often undermined by a semi-notorious degree of equipment failure and breakdown), earned them a combination of admiration, sympathy, and disdain on the Midlands scene. An easy-going DIY ethic has made them popular with soundmen, fanzines and fellow musicians, but largely invisible to promoters, labels and the press.

Midlands labels - Bearos and Sorted – provided early support, though the band's most fruitful relationship seems to have been with the now-defunct Guildford label, Words and Works Rejected. A number of fellow travellers and collaborators (Bob Tilton, John Sims, Los Planetos Del Agua, MJ Hibbett, Last Harbour, Half Seas Over, Twinkie, The Freed Unit) have been familiar entries on the band's infrequent live itineraries.

As the band developed (and relaxed a little), and the line-up changed and then settled, Lazarus Clamp began to allow other influences to show through - English folk music, American country, and some rather deadpan humour - and became all the better for it. By the time their debut single, "Sea Sore Songs", emerged in the late 1990s, it was already a historical artifact, both in terms of the band's sound and the post-rock scene that had supported it. Subsequent singles (North, Left-handed, Some Rivals) and the band's first two LPs (Such as you are and still not seeming to mind and The more we are the funnier it is) provide a better snapshot of Lazarus Clamp's literate, spontaneous, scruffy, and very English, take on their ragbag of influences. These releases are a beguiling, and sometimes frustrating, combination of precisely-executed, off-beat 'alt-pop/unrock', peppered with lo-fi home recordings, and off-the-cuff improvised meanderings. The band's willingness to fall on their faces, and their musical and verbal articulacy when they pull things together, are probably their greatest virtues.

Never prolific in their live outings, Lazarus Clamp are still active and recording, but have been dispersed across the UK, and, as a result, their live appearances have become even more rare. In Spring of 2008, they released a double album, Death to Technicians / It ain't what you do it's what it does to you [1], described by Drowned in Sound as 'wonkily elaborate' [2] and in Winter of 2009, they released the Against entitlement LP. This received excellent reviews from sources as diverse as The Sunday Times [3], and Delusions of Adequacy [4]

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Discography

Album

Year Title RatingReleases
2008 Death to Technicians 1
The More We Are, the Funnier It Is 1

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