BIOG - DRIVE NORTH WEST
Drive North West were formed in 1992 by guitarist Dave Buckley and bass player Chris Lloyd who shared a common love of the Beatles. Along with drummer Chris Wright and lead guitarist Alex Fielded they recorded their debut album “Everything is Beautiful and I’m Going to Live Forever” in the same year and released it on the independent Moronophonic record label.
The band fragmented halfway through the recording and this led to two separate line ups of the band being represented on the album which contained a selection of short strong songs and longer more complex offerings, all driven by the Peter Green influenced guitar playing of Alex and the song writing of Dave.
By the time of the next album “Rocking Horse Shit” in 1995 only Dave was left from the original band with lead guitar duties taken by the incendiary playing of Pat Watt who contributes several astonishing solos to the album. Production duties were carried out by Jeff Davies, Half Man Half Biscuits’ producer and lynch pin of Liverpool’s famed Probe Plus Record label. The result was a particularly strong and organic sounding record displaying a rich blend of rock, acoustic music and blues which benefited hugely from the addition of singer Suzie Lowe and keyboard / guitarist Roman Wieckowski who also contributed to the song writing. However, the deal with Probe fell through and disappointingly the album never became available to the public. Hence it would seem the retrospective title!
The last of the three Drive North West albums and probably the most coherent was recorded eighteen months later. “We’re Only Ugly When We’re Awake” again on Moronophonic marked a shift in musical direction to a more pop / rock sound following the departure of Pat Watt and the addition of another new bass player, the fourth up to that time! Standout track was “Ugly”, their hit single that never was which was co written by dynamic singer Suzie and Dave.
Despite radio play, various support slots and innumerable gigs and glittering reviews, Drive petered out in 2000. They reformed again with a new line up in 2004 (drummer number six and eventually bass player number five) and continued gigging to much acclaim until they finally disbanded at Christmas 2011, without returning to the recording studio. There is however some great footage of them on You Tube should you wonder what you missed!