A11Zs next tour de force was a 12 inch E.P. remember those?! in red vinyl, titled No Fun After Midnight.
No Fun After Midnight: 12 inch Red Vinyl Three Track Single, Catalogue Number POSPX 243
(Recorded, Polygram Studios London 1981, Produced by Andy Scott of The Sweet )
No Fun After Midnight (A-side)
Treason (B-Side) Valhalla Force (B-Side)
While recording this record at Polydor Studios in London Stratford Place, there was a group of Canadian girls in the building opposite that were hanging out the window asking if they could come over into Polydor to see the studio, we obliged and ended up having a wild party in there and then back at the hotel. The following day i went to see The Song Remains the Same that was on the cinema at Marble Arch just up the road, it was fantastic.
The record was initially banned by Radio 1 because of its lyrical content which at the time was considered too 'graphic'. It did nothing however to stop this record becoming number one in the heavy metal chart's of just about every musical journal of the time. No Fun After Midnight was released on the back of a solo tour, and reached number 50 in the national singles charts. AIIZ at this time were doing gigs on their own at placed like Nottingham Boat House, Bristol rock club, Liverpool Empire Theatre, Slough Arts Centre there were many but i dont have the names and dates.
After the success of the tour the band decided to enlist the help of Russ Ballard, a member of the now legendary Argent and writer of the hit "Since you've been gone" by Rainbow. Russ was to pen a tune for the boy's, resulting in the single "I'm the one who loves you". The single was recorded at Red Bus studios in London and was engineered by Louis Austin who at the time was working with Judas Priest. The producer Andy Scott (chosen by the band themselves) was also a legend having been the guitarist and driving force behind The Sweet, one of the biggest rock bands ever produced by Britain in record sales and popularity! Andy Scott came up to our rehearsal facilities at the Kings Hall Belle Vue and helped us routine the song Im The One Who Loves You, we spent a day going through ironing out the wrinkles ready to go into the studios. At the studio, Gary Moberly came down and guested on the keyboards and Steve Priest was there both from the band The Sweet.
Cover for Im The One Who Loves You AIIZ In the Heavy Metal Charts Number One
Im The One Who Loves You: 7 inch Two Track Single:
(Red Bus Studio London 24 Track, Produced by Andy Scott of The Sweet, Engineered by Louis Austin, Written by Russ Ballard, Gary Moberley from The Sweet Guesting on keyboards)
I'm the One Who Loves You (A-side) Ring Side Seat (B-side)
One of the Friday rock show sessions with Tommy Vance and a live in concert from the BBC radio one, the same people that banned us!
A II Z - BBC Live In Concert 1980:
Recorded live for the Tommy Vance BBC Friday Rock Show in 1980 just right after the release of the "Witch Of Berkeley" album.
01 - S. O. S.
02 - Rest In Peace
03 - Walking The Distance
04 - Danger U. X. B.
05 - The Witch Of Berkeley
We then got the tour with Girlschool who were in the charts with Hit N Run, and had done a few tours, it was going to be a long tour, the gigs were being added as we went along, i recall doing something like 30 plus concerts on this tour, the dates on this advert below are not right, the list below is more accurate. On the first night of the tour at Sheffield Top Rank, i tried using a large stainless steel pick so i did not go through so many during a gig, on the first chard i snapped all the strings on my guitar and the bridge fell off, i had spare guitars but it was a shocker moment, the crowd thought it was part of the show.
AIIZ Button Badges:
Adverts in Sounds Magazine and Karrang Magazine
After the gig we went out to see the Honey Drippers playing in Sheffield that night and met Robert Plant at the gig, we went on to a night club where Simon Wright got threatened by a guy with a huge knife, the bouncers were called in after the guy followed Simon about saying he was going to kill him, they threw him out along with a few punches and a scuffle, he had apparently been in jail for the same thing before, all in all quite an eventful first night!
Girlschool Hit and Run UK Tour: Started April 14th 1981:
14 Sheffield : Top Rank
15 Hanley : Victoria Hall
16 Derby : Assembly Rooms
18 Middlesbrough : Gaskins
19 Newcastle : City Hall
21 Edinburgh : Odeon
22 Glasgow : Apollo
23 Preston : Guild Hall
24 ManchEsther : Free Trade Hall
24 Liverpool : Royal Court Theatre
27 Birmingham : Odeon
28 LeicEsther : De Montfort Hall
1 Bristol : Colston Hall
3 Bournemouth : Winter Gardens
4 Brighton : Corn Exchange
5 London : Hammersmith Palais
15 West Runton : Pavilion
Ipswich / Posthouse Party
More Dates to add on girlschool tour:
At the Newcastle City Hall gig just as we were called out on stage i hit Simon in the face with a black forest gateau, he had it all over him, i think it was his birthday, we sawed through all of his drum sticks half way so as he hit the drums they would break he would then take the next out the bag attached to his floor toms, we left the last one un sawn, at the same gig we had one of the road crew follow tony backhouse about behind him with a life size cut out of Phil Lynott the crowd loved it, tony did not catch on for ages it was hilarious.
Some other AIIZ Releases
After the show at the hotel i we played a knock out pool game for a meal for all the road crew and bands, i won it and Mike Henley paid for it all, he was tour manager on this tour too as well as the black Sabbath tour earlier.
The next gig was at Edinburgh Odeon, we went down so god at this gig it could of been our gig, we did two encores and we were supposed to be the support band, AIIZ at this point had broken in the UK and were accepted by all the heavy rock fans everywhere. I went out front after this gig to watch the girls play and was swamped by fans, i was surrounded for ages.
The following day we played Glasgow, i had never seen anything like it the stage was about 8 feet high, the crowd rushed the stage and stated making a human pyramid to get on the stage, it was like a siege. We picked up a drum rodie at this gig called goom who was into the band and good at his job being a drummer himself.
I can remember at one gig Simon sitting crying in the seats out front before the gig, there was nothing wrong with him he was just run down from to much partying so we knew the curer as it had happened to us in the past, we got the tour manager to get a doctor to come and give everyone an injection of Vitamin B12, within ten mins he was up and about and sound checking with a smile on his face.
At ManchEsther Freetrade Hall we went down a storm we had so many fans in ManchEsther at this stage we could of sold it out on our own, we played two encores and they still wanted more!
At Leister De Montfort Hall i can remember the balcony moving up and down by about 3 feet in front of us it was very worrying, and a guy hung of the side balcony and dropped on to the stage he could of been killed, the crowd loved it, outside the gig after our cars were swamped with fans jumping on the bonnet and trying to open the doors, it was like this everywhere we went now. We had done three major support tours in the UK and everyone knew us and we had also done a solo tour.
Double Page Interview With Gary from Kerrang Magazine
We played at Brighton Corn Exchange and there was a Mod meeting in Brighton at that time and all the windows in our tour bus were put through gig was great but there was fighting in the streets that night between mods and rockers, crazy when you look back at it.
London Hammersmith Palais was an amazing gig we stormed it, the stage was low down and it was like we were playing in the crowd, i was drinking a lot of beer as it was really hot, the place was packed door to ceiling, the crowd were chanting our name before we came on, by the end of the gig i was real drunk, i was walking off the stage backwards and tripped over a lighting truce and landed on my back i was just laughing, i stayed there for a minute while the crowd built up for an encore, the roadies picked me up and i was back at it, after Girlschool played in there encore i went on again to play Johnny be good with them, great night for everyone.
At the Woolwich Odeon i jumped off the stage and played up the isle with bouncers circling me, i used to do this a lot but sometimes it didn’t work out, it was a great crowd participation part of the show the band would hold up the song and the bouncers would help me back on the stage. On one occasion when i did this they ripped all the stings off my guitar.
Some fans of the band sent me this image, it was them copying the No Fun After Midnight Record Sleave
At the last gig on the Girlschool tour there was a party at Ipswich Post House, it got crazy with everyone getting naked and jumping in the pool, the party was done by Grey Bray Girlschools management at that time.
After this tour we were to do a new album, i was going to the Kings Hall every day writing songs and recording ideas with a 4 track recorder Tony Fletcher had got me. I would lay down a drum track and then play over it developing songs, the rest of the band were absent most of the time. One event i remember was there was one day i could not practice or write songs as they had let the hall at the last minute to the Free Masons who were to hold their annual general meeting there, i had never heard of them at that point, i watched the event from the roof walkway, all very odd, the whole of Belle Vue was full off Rolls Royces and expensive cars. I was to find out a lot more about these shady people later on!
The heavy metal scene was coming quickly to a close and record companies were not backing bands like they had been previously, heavy rock was over and everyone knew it!
The AIIZ Split:
The band split in 1982, mainly contractual & financial. Peter Mench AC/DCs manager wanted to sign the band and put them on the world tour with AC/DC, Kennedy Street would not release them from their contract, i was friends with the band AC/DC having gone on several of the early tour dates. We could not tour and could not record at that stage in the UK.
I left the band and refused to work with Kennedy Street. AIIZ's earned its place in the greater scheme of things, the fact remains they are worthy of note in the resurgence of the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) home grown metal bands of the late seventies and early eighties.
I decided to move to London where there was still a rock music scene going on. I heard that some guys out of Angel Witch a London band were looking for a guitarist, i got on the train and went down to London and turned up at West Ham Edwin Shirley trucking met the band and played some tracks, joined the band and moved into a guest house on Poynders Road Clapham London, it was the house of the mother of the drummer Dave Dufort who’s sister drummed for Girlschool who i knew.
The AIIZ band split inevitably as a result of a problem with the management who would not release us from our contracts to join AC/DCs management in the USA and thus we were not able to break in America. I moved to London and joined TYTAN, made up of well known musicians in the heavy rock world.
A11Zs next tour de force was a 12 inch E.P. remember those?! in red vinyl, titled No Fun After Midnight.