Formed: Manchester, England, UK
"V2 pack the aural-punch of damp fart in a rust corrugated baked bean can" - NME, Speed Freak review, 1978Inspired to form, like so many others, after seeing the Sex Pistols at the Lesser Free Trade Hall in 1976, V2 were a minor but enjoyable name on the punk circuit. They played with all the usual suspects - The Fall, The Drones, Slaughter & The Dogs etc - and issued two pretty good singles. They were however dropped from the Short Circuit: Live At The Electric Circus compilation album because they were too inept. The three-song Speed Freak bears more than a passing comparison to Raped, but ‘Nothing To Do’ is practically identical to Slaughter & The Dogs’ ‘I’m Mad’. It’s great fun, with dopey dole queue lyrics: ‘Nothing to do, nothing to say/Sitting and staring at the walls all day/I’m bored I’m bored, got nothing to do’ etc.
Man In The Box – unusually released on 12” only - is actually quite good in a genuine way, a mid-speed power pop tune played in a standard punk fashion. NME said this about it: "This lot are a bit duff".
V2 is a standard Overground compilation, containing both sides of both singles, as well as those tracks recorded for Short Circuit: Live At The Electric Circus. And stuff my old boots, they are out of tune! The remainder comprises badly recorded studio sessions charting their progress from cracking standard-issue punk to boring rock, the latter laden with a surfeit of stupid sci-fi lyrics. If you have the two singles and can live without three reasonably-well-recorded live cuts, this is a complete waste of your money. At their worst, these songs resemble a cross between Bowie and The Drones on a very bad day.
Guitarist Ian Nance and drummer Steve Brotherdale (who had previously played with Warsaw) had also been in The Panik, and they shared some links with Nosebleeds. They reformed in 1996 for the Holidays In The Sun festival at Blackpool's Winter Gardens, and actually played twice (the second time backing Eddie Money), and toured America with The Drones in 1998. This reformed band also recorded and released a 7" single, 'Is Anyone Out There?' for Data Records.
Singles / Albums
|Man In The Box
|Gee Whizz It's You
|V2 (CD, 1996)|
Identity Parade UK LP 1980 (TJM): Overture / City Creatures
Rabid/TJM Punk Singles Collection UK CD 1996 (Receiver): Man In A Box / When The World Isn't There
White Dopes On Punk UK 2xCD 2005 (Castle Music): Man In A Box
England Belongs To Me Japan LP 1996 (77 Records): Man In The Box