Irish indie tonight in the form of Whipping Boy, a critically acclaimed band whose initial run went from 1988-1998. Originally playing cover versions of songs by Velvet Underground and The Fall, they were first called Lolita and The Whipping Boy and then shortened it and began doing original material. They were well received by audiences for their live shows, and their first two eps showed a great deal of promise for better things on the horizon. Their debut album, Submarine was issued in 1992 and was widely acclaimed by much of the music press. However, the acclaim and the actual sales didn’t match, and their first album was not a success. However, it did lead to signing by a major label, Columbia and preparations began for a follow up album.
This session, recorded at BBC Radio 1 on August 17, 1995 for Steve Lamacq, comes three months ahead of their follow up album, Heartworm, which was also their first under the aegis of Columbia. Like their debut album, Heartworm was warmly received, with critics proclaiming it “an earth-shatteringly powerful experience” and three singles were released from the album. Two of the singles charted, but the album was pronounced a commercial failure and it soon brought an end to their relationship with Columbia with a third album in the can, but not released. Thoroughly disillusioned by the experience (and let’s face it; ten years worth of slogging and trying with no success would demoralize just about anybody), they dissolved in 1998,
However, the band reunited in 2005 for a series of shows. And in 2011 Whipping Boy started back up, with personnel changes and embarking on a summer tour. In this case, three might be the charm.
Unless you spent much of the 90s in the UK or Ireland, it’s doubtful you may have heard of Whipping Boy before – so this session will be new to you, and may prompt you to investigate what else they’ve got and what they’re up to. Those of you who are familiar with the band will no doubt be on top of all the latest news, so it’s preaching to the choir from here on out.
Crank it up and enjoy it either way.