The Walkabouts Biography
Last updated: 09/06/2009 12:00:00 PM
Chris Eckman and Carla Torgerson (who occasionally record for Glitterhouse as Chris & Carla) first met in 1983, Eckman with his electric guitar, playing old Buzzcocks songs, Torgerson on acoustic with her folk influences. This contrast forms a key part of the dynamic of The Walkabouts, formed in OE84. The first album See Beautiful Rattlesnake Gardens (released in 1988) was enthusiastically received by the press, and earned the band a recording contract with the fledgling Sub Pop label. Two albums Cataract (1989) and Scavenger (1990, with guests Brian Eno and Natalie Merchant) plus the 6-track EP Rag And Bone (1990) were then released on Sub Pop. The Walkabouts toured extensively, with Camper Van Beethoven and The Verlaines, before leaving Sub Pop in 1992 - at least they left Sub Pop US but Sub Pop Europe / Glitterhouse Records, run by far-sighted A&R gurus Reinhard Holstein and Rembert Stiewe, immediately took over.
German-based Glitterhouse then released a series of Walkabouts albums - OEdouble albumí New West Motel (1993), Satisfied Mind (1993 with guest Peter Buck; with covers of songs by amongst others Nick Cave, John Cale, Patti Smith, The Carter Family and Charlie Rich), Setting The Woods On Fire (1994) plus the bandís farewell present to Glitterhouse, the excellent, worth-seeking-out Death Valley Days - Lost Songs And Rarities (1996). After inking a deal with Virgin, The Walkabouts released two albums produced by Nick Cave producer Victor Van Vugt, Devilís Road (1996) and Nighttown (1997). Both were very well received, but the drawbacks of major-label politics soon became apparent.
Trail Of Stars is the inaugural Grapevine/Glitterhouse release. Recorded and co-produced by Phill Brown (Brownís credits encompass the final two Talk Talk albums - Spirit Of Eden and Laughing Stock - and also work with Mark Hollis, Kristin Hersh, Roxy Music and John Martyn), the album features a new bass player Fred Chalenor (who brings his experience with John Zorn), while Glenn Slaterís wonderful analogue keyboards and string arrangements add to the mesmerising backdrop.The Walkabouts are one of few bands other than REM to close the decade fully functioning and whatís more, in great style...listen to this record!
A Grapevine/Glitterhouse Release
GRCD 450 Dist. RMG/Universal