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the official distractions website

Welcome to the official Distractions website. We will be aiming to record the history of one of the greatest, but least heralded, of all Manchester beat groups.

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Monday, January 23, 2012

An impossible dream

The word slowly spreads from Cerysmatic in London to Rarebird's Rock n Roll Rarities in America...


Spotlight Album Review #8

The Distractions - "You're Not Going Out Dressed Like That" EP (TJM 2) 1978

The Distractions - "Nobody's Perfect" (Island ilps 9604) 1980

The Distractions were a quintet from Manchester, England who recorded only one full-length album during their original existence.  That 1980 album, Nobody's Perfect, has long been out of print.  The band split up in 1981, after the album failed to attract much attention.  Their commercial failure wasn't caused by a lack of effort.  Their small body of work demonstrated that these new-wavers were avid students of music history, and they skilfully applied their knowledge to their own enjoyable music. 

Before recording their full-length album, the Distractions released a few singles and a 4-song EP in the U.K.  Their 1978 EP, titled You're Not Going Out Dressed Like That, already showed that they did not intend to limit themselves to the usual new wave sounds.  These four songs (one of which, "Nothing", was remade for the album) show influences including Elvis Costello, early Kinks, early Byrds (singer Mike Finney sounds uncannily like Gene Clark on this EP), and dashes of surf-rock and psychedelia.  And this was just a rough warm-up for the album to come.

Thankfully, the U.K. label Hidden Masters plans to release a 2-CD Distractions anthology in Spring 2012, which would include the tracks from Nobody's Perfect.  And... singer Mike Finney and guitarist Steve Perrin have reunited to form a new Distractions lineup, and have recorded a new studio album set for release in 2012 on Occultation.  For the lucky few of us who are familiar with the Distractions, this seems like the realization of an impossible dream. 


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