ABOVE: Attila (seated) and Seething Wells signing debut EP (Picture from Attila's official site)
Born: John Baine, October 1957
A "ranting poet" from Harlow (home of The Newtown Neurotics, who backed him occasionally), Attila The Stockbroker really was a stockbroker. A perennial support act in the early 80s for the likes of The Jam and New Model Army, he was one of several John Cooper Clarke/Clash-inspired wordsmiths who cropped up at punk shows at the time, others including Swift Nick, that twat Phil Jupitus and Seething Wells (with whom he recorded).
Ranting At The Nation - More Poems About Flatfish And Russians has one top punk tune ('Holiday In Albania', a rip-off of the Buzzcocks' 'Walking Distance'), a couple of songs using medieval instrumentation, and a surfeit of absurd social commentary delivered in a jackhammer Ben Elton style. Running gags about kippers, Russians and the Human League quickly become tiresome. To these ears, it just seems horribly smug and self-satisfied.
Later albums include Libyan Students From Hell (1987), Scornflakes (1988), Live At The Rivoli (1990) and Donkeys' Years (1991). In the same year as the latter he teamed up with John Otway on Cheryl - A Rock Opera, a stage production about "Satanism, trainspotting and unrequited love", spawning an album of the same name.
I have to plead ignorance to his other material, although in the mid-90's he formed a proper band, Barnstormer, with members of The Fabulous Fish Brothers, playing punk with medieval instruments (anyone know what a crumhorn is?).Poems Ancient And Modern: A Live Anthology 1981-1999 and The Pen & The Sword: Selected Songs - 1981-1995 are compilations, the former providing his poems, the latter full of his music. Both were unavailable in the normal outlets, being issued via his website or sold at gigs. He has also written for The Guardian, Time Out, NME, and Sounds, as well as the following books: Cautionary Tales For Dead Commuters (1986), Scornflakes (1992), The Rat-Tailed Maggot And Other Poems (1998) and Goldstone Ghosts (2001).
Singles / Albums
|Phasing Out Capitalism (Tape, 1981)||Rough, Raw & Ranting (7", split with Seething Wells, 1982)||Cocktails E.P.
|Ranting At The Nation - More Poems About Flatfish And Russians (LP, 1983)||Radio Rap!
|Sawdust And Empire (LP, 1984)|
|Poems Ancient And Modern: A Live Anthology 1981-1999 (CD, 1999)||The Pen & The Sword: Selected Songs - 1981-1995 (CD, 1999)||Spirit Of The Age
Poetry Olympics UK LP 1982 (All Around): tracks unknown
Punk - Past, Present And Future ... The Released Emotions Compilation (1988-1993) UK CD 1993 (Released Emotions): Washington Bullets
Ne Me Quitta Pas UK CD 1998 (Irregular): Ces Gens La
All Sewn Up - A Tribute To Patrik Fitzgerald Norway 2xLP/2xCD 2009 (Crispin Glover): Back-Street Boys
One Law For Them Another One For Us UK CD ???? (Joe Black): Haider! [as Atilla The Stockbroker's Barnstormer]
ATTILA THE STOCKBROKER - Official homepage
WIKIPEDIA - Attila page
FACEBOOK - Attila's Facebook page
MYSPACE - Attila page