|Genres||Sludge Metal, Groove Metal, Alternative Metal, Noise Rock, Grunge|
|Years active||1988 - 1995|
|Labels||Earache, Columbia, Pigboy|
|Associated acts||Nailbomb, Red Love, Theory of Ruin, Tubesurfer|
|Website||Alex Newport's Official Page|
Fudge Tunnel were a band formed in Nottingham, England by Alex Newport, David Ryley and Adrian Parkin. After two critically acclaimed singles on Pigboy/Vinyl Solution Records ("Fudge Tunnel" in 1989, "The Sweet Sound of Excess" in 1990), they signed to Nottingham's Earache Records for the remainder of their career, releasing three studio albums. The band was well known for their massive guitar sound and ironic sense of humor which made them popular with the British music press.
History[edit | edit source]
Fudge Tunnel were formed in Nottingham, UK, in 1988. The original line up consisted of by Alex Newport (guitar/vocals), Mark (bass) and Adrian Parkin (drums). They used to rehearse above a Working Men's Club, Later on, Mark decided to move to guitar, and so they recruited David Ryley to take up the bass. Thus, for a while anyway, Fudge Tunnel were a twin guitar four piece. Mark left soon afterwards, leaving the band as a trio.
The scene in Nottingham was largely dominated by the independent label Earache, who had built a reputation around bands like Napalm Death. The emergence of Fudge Tunnel with their dry humour and ambiguous musical approach was something new to the musical landscape of Nottingham and the UK as a whole. Their first release, the acerbic Sex Mammoth EP, came out on Pigboy Records in 1990. Receiving praise from both the indie and metal press. A tour with rising industrial band Godflesh, and a second EP The Sweet Sound of Excess, produced by Iain Burgess (him of Big Black fame), helped to land the band a deal with Earache Records, who had been starting to branch out with bands like Pitchshifter joining their roster.
The debut Earache release was the monstrous and ironic Hate Songs in E Minor. But the release was blighted by the now classic story of how Nottingham's Vice Squad confiscated the original cover artwork of a cartoon decapitation and gaining the band media coverage. Hate Songs marked a new era for Fudge Tunnel. The uncompromisingly brutal sound that burst from the 12" of vinyl took their early attitude and energy and magnified it with a stronger, more dynamic production. It also confirmed what most metalheads probably thought they already knew: that they were a metal band after all. More tours followed, including one notably tour of Europe with Brazilian thrash band, Sepultura. Max Cavallera, then vocalist and guitarist with the Seps, went mad for Fudge Tunnel after hearing the Hate Songs album. They were invited on tour, a decision Newport would regret as it led to the band being labeled as part of "the metal scene".
They went back into the studio in 1993 and recorded the much more commercial sounding Creep Diets. Comparisons were instantly drawn with the rising Seattle scene and Fudge Tunnel's ambiguous musical approach now drew comparisons to grunge. The band found it quite amusing, but were pissed off when people actually started to think they were from Seattle themselves. Their disillusionment with the music press deepened. An EP entitled Teeth followed that same year. Eventually the band would release their third album (Initially after Columbia refused to release it) in 1994, entitled The Complicated Futility of Ignorance with a three-day tour of the UK in support of it. Not long after the band chose to split up in 1995 on their own terms with a posthumous compilation seeing release: In a Word.
On 7 May 2020 Fudge Tunnel would surprise release a live album entitled Best Of The Desk Volume One - Live in Europe 1993 on their Bandcamp.
Discography[edit | edit source]
Studio Albums[edit | edit source]
- Hate Songs in E Minor (1991, Earache, Relativity)
- Creep Diets (1993, Earache, Columbia)
- The Complicated Futility of Ignorance (1994, Earache)
Misc. Releases[edit | edit source]
- Sex Mammoth (EP) (1989, Pigboy, Vinyl Solution)
- The Sweet Sound of Excess (EP) (1990, Pigboy, Vinyl Solution)
- Fudgecake (Compilation) (1992, Pigboy)
- Teeth EP (EP) (1992, Earache)
- In A Word (Compilation) (1995, Earache)
- Best Of The Desk Volume One - Live in Europe 1993 (Live Album) (2020, Self-Released)
Members[edit | edit source]
- David Riley - Bass (1988 - 1995)
- Adrian Parkin - Drums (1988 - 1995)
- Alex Newport - Guitar, Vocals (1988 - 1995)