Formed in March 1986, original bass-player Rob "The Bass Thing" Jones left in 1989, a few months after Martin Bell joined as to play violin and banjo. Jones later died of a drug overdose in New York.
The band's new bass player was Paul Clifford, and this line-up continued until 1994, adding keyboardist Peter Whittaker along the way, when they decided to split over the usual musical differences and perceived lack of label support.
In 2000, most of the band reformed - with the exception of Paul Clifford who was replaced by Stuart Quinell. By 2004, though, the band had split again with Bell and drummer Martin Gilks refusing to work with vocalist Miles Hunt again. Hunt started work on a solo record, but when joined by original guitarist Malc Treece decided to release the work under the Wonder Stuff name, causing some controversy.
In 2006 Gilks was killed in a motorcycle accident in London.