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The Jazz Butcher Conspiracy : Mailing List : 1999

Sikkorskis from Hell????

From: David Zembower <>
Date: Fri 17 Sep 1999 - 14:29:28 PDT

Hello list,

I found the following bio of the JBC at the All Music Guide website ( I had never heard of this "Sikkorskis from Hell" thing before. I hope you find this interesting, and that it comes through without a bunch of weird formating.

The Jazz Butcher was the vehicle of the prolific singer/songwriter Pat Fish, an archetypal British eccentric whose sharp observational wit and melodic gifts led the group through over a decade of constant line-up shifts, stylistic mutations and even a series of name changes which found the band performing variously -- and apparently randomly -- under such titles as the Jazz Butcher Conspiracy and the Jazz Butcher & His Sikkorskis
>From Hell. Fish was born Patrick Huntrods in London in 1957, and raised
primarily in Northampton. He first began performing while studying philosophy at Oxford in the late 1970s, fronting the short-lived Nightshift; a subsequent band dubbed the Institution later joined forces with their rivals the Sonic Tonix, establishing the nucleus of players who later formed the core of the Jazz Butcher sphere.

 Fish first concocted his Butcher persona in 1982, quickly enlisting his Oxford mates to join him in a
 band of the same name; even from the outset, the group's roster changed seemingly on a daily basis,
 although Fish found an early mainstay in guitarist Max Eider. The Jazz Butcher's eclectic 1982 debut
 A Bath in Bacon -- including early skewed pop gems such as "Love Zombie" and "Sex Engine
 Thing" -- was essentially a Fish solo record, but by 1984's folky A Scandal in Bohemia the roster
 had stabilized to include ex-Bauhaus bassist David J. Following The Gift of Music, a 1984
 compilation of single sides, the Jazz Butcher resurfaced the following year with Sex and Travel, a
 marvelously odd set ranging in sound from punk ("Red Pets") to cabaret ("Holiday").

 After David J left the band to join Love and Rockets, the remaining quartet -- Fish, Eider, bassist
 Felix Ray and drummer Mr. O.P. Jones -- rechristened themselves the Jazz Butcher and His
 Sikkorskis From Hell and recorded the 1985 live set Hamburg, followed the next year by an EP,
 Hard. Leaving the rhythm section behind, Fish and Eider then recorded 1986's Conspiracy EP,
 credited to the "Jazz Butcher vs. Max Eider" and foreshadowing the subsequent shift to the Jazz
 Butcher Conspiracy aegis for Distressed Gentlefolk. Eider soon exited to mount a solo career,
 leaving Fish to team with guitarist Kizzy O'Callaghan for 1988's Fishcoteque, their first release for
 the Creation label.

 By the time of 1989's Big Planet Scarey Planet, the line-up also included the superb bassist
 Laurence O'Keefe, saxophonist Alex Green and drummer Paul Mulreany; 1990's Cult of the
 Basement was recorded with the same roster, but the usual disruptions soon left Fish essentially to
 his own devices for 1991's Condition Blue and 1993's Waiting for the Love Bus. Upon reuniting
 with David J, who produced 1995's low-key Illuminate, Fish decided to lay the Jazz Butcher name
 to rest, and performed a farewell performance in London at the end of the year. He subsequently
 signed on to play drums with the Stranger Tractors. -- Jason Ankeny, All-Music Guide Received on Fri Sep 17 14:58 PDT 1999

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