Wreckless Eric - any good?

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I was gonna ask a s/d question, but I then realised that there may not actually be any decent songs other than "Whole Wide World" in his catalogue.

So is he any good? If yes, please s/d for me.

Thank you.

Johnney B (Johnney B), Thursday, 24 April 2003 08:50 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Born Eric Goulden, one of the very early Stiff signings along with Elvis Costello, Ian Dury, Nick Lowe etc.

Yes, he has done a lot of great things apart from Whole Wide World:
Reconnez Cherie, Semaphore Signals, Take The Cash, A Pop Song, Hit & Miss Judy, and many more ranging from gritty pub rock to pure unabashed pop.

He also recorded / gigged as / with Captains Of Industry and The Len Bright Combo but I believe he's reverted to being Wreckless Eric again now. Approach later recordings with incresing caution!

Search: Greatest Stiffs

Stewart Osborne (Stewart Osborne), Thursday, 24 April 2003 10:44 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

lots of good in the Wreckless catalog, methinks. Let's Go To The Pictures is another good one. I like the Len Bright Combo quite a bit, too (didn't realize it was Eric & some of the Headcoats until later). "Young Upwardly Mobile and Stupid" has a fine one-note guitar solo. And there's a b-side of a relatively recent single called "Tell Me I'm the Only One", which is very good lofi 60s pop.

pauls00, Thursday, 24 April 2003 11:29 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Quite good. The recent Metro compilation is worth searching out.


TMFTML (TMFTML), Thursday, 24 April 2003 11:55 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Quite enjoyed The Hitsville House Band's "12 O'Clock Stereo" CD myself.

Wandering Boy Poet, Thursday, 24 April 2003 12:03 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"Whole Wide World" is so great, the rest of the Stiff stuff kinda pales in comparison, imho, though it certainly does have its charms.

Anyone heard the "Donovan Of Trash" collection? I think it was available on Sympathy For The Record Industry. demos, I think. I've heard it's great.

Fritz Wollner (Fritz), Thursday, 24 April 2003 12:11 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I love Reconnez Cherie

tigerclawskank, Friday, 25 April 2003 10:30 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

The recent 'Greatest Stiffs' best of has pretty much all of his best stuff, and is available fairly cheap I think. I went to see him play in 1978, and bumped into him in the pub beforehand, and had a chat with him for a while. (You don't impress many people by namedroping him, sadly.) Also, it was the only gig where I was taller than the star even while he was on stange! (The Affair in Swindon had like a 4" stage, and Eric is only about 5'2 or something.)

Martin Skidmore (Martin Skidmore), Friday, 25 April 2003 21:38 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
"Bungalow Hi" is a fine album.

mark grout (mark grout), Tuesday, 25 January 2005 15:47 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I'd never heard him before, being a young un and all, but I found myself reviewing his one man show for my local paper last year and it was great. One of these shows that's half tunes, half anecdotes from his books. The songs were pretty sweet by and large, pub rock with a discordant punky edge and very witty, bitter lyrics. Whole WIde World is insanely catchy - just to mention the title immediately brings the chorus to mind. His stories were hilarious (telling of his Tory granny, horrible suburban life, his hatred of Elvis Costello) and he was sharp as a tack on the improvised banter too.

stew, Tuesday, 25 January 2005 15:58 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Saw him do an encore with Yo La Tengo last month. Besides "Whole Wide World" and "Take the Cash" he covered Blondie's "Sunday Girl" and Paul Simon's "America"! Twas great...

Dr Morbius (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 25 January 2005 16:02 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

He's a hero. A Popsong, Semaphore Signals, Rags and Tatters and Reconez Cherie are all great too. The Captains of Industry was not so hot - bit too slick sounding. The first Len Bright Combo album "The Len Bright Combo presents The Len Bright Combo by The Len Bright Combo" (mostly the Milkshakes) is brilliant throughout and his best album that I've heard, being the ultimate statement of his lo-fi grungy pub-rock stylings. The second one is okay but completely inessential.

everything, Tuesday, 25 January 2005 16:28 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

He rules. I had the honor of playing a show with him in Amsterdam; his voice and guitar playing are killer and he's really sweet and charming. My only complaint: he didn't play "Tierra del Fuego"! Otherwise he was rad.

Drew Daniel (Drew Daniel), Tuesday, 25 January 2005 16:44 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Saw him last year supporting The Magic Band. Had him previously written off as a slightly tragic has-been. Was proven totally and utterly WRONG. A charming, engaging, arresting and moving performance, of rare wit and spirit. Of the new stuff, search 33s & 45s.

mike t-diva (mike t-diva), Tuesday, 25 January 2005 16:51 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Another vote for classic. Also search the song "Veronica" (it's on Greatest Stiffs)...

Chuckling at the Tomkat's Marquee (Ben Boyer), Tuesday, 25 January 2005 17:14 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Oh, and of the new stuff, search out "I dont want to be "Local""

(I don't wanna be local
I don't wanna be from round here)

As someone said, "wow you wrote a song that you can't play live anywhere!"

mark grout (mark grout), Wednesday, 26 January 2005 09:28 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

There's a 1986 Andy Kershaw session from the Len Bright Combo on Soulseek. Genuine 80's dust and everything. Tracks: Young Upwardly Mobile and Stupid, Selina Through The Windsheild, Julie.

everything, Wednesday, 26 January 2005 22:38 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

If You ever get the chance to see this guy live, please do. What an absolute star.
Punk Rock. Raconteur.
I'd say he's a bit of a genius.

hull hole (hull hole), Wednesday, 26 January 2005 23:29 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
He's playing every Saturday night this month at the Knitting Factory Tap Bar, 7pm.

Dr Morbius (Dr Morbius), Friday, 4 March 2005 19:44 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...
I caught last Sat night's show -- packed -- and he was in great form. Was 50 minutes late getting started because he'd just flown in from SXSW: "I have all this material... I usta call them songs, but I find out at these industry things they're MATERIAL."

Drunken female fan about 40 (she hit the floor at least once and wobbled throughout) tucked a bill into his shirt during "Take the Cash."

Dr Morbius (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 22 March 2005 14:55 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

His SXSW showcase = stone classic

asl, Tuesday, 22 March 2005 15:36 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

I saw him once at Maxwell's back in the 90s. Great show. The percussionist from the Feelies was front and center shouting out requests for his favorites.

Ken L (Ken L), Tuesday, 22 March 2005 15:40 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

I've always loved him. I'm so glad he's still playing and sure wish he'd make it to Atlanta!

Amy Meacham, Tuesday, 22 March 2005 22:51 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

four years pass...

Amy Rigby? Kevin Coyne tribute? What?

Cage, Trintignant, Sheen (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 21 December 2009 03:25 (nine years ago) Permalink

I used to visit his website regulrly, haven't for a long time...

Always amusing 'recent news' from the man himself..

Mark G, Monday, 21 December 2009 07:42 (nine years ago) Permalink

Wreckless Eric
Wreckless Eric is an antique English pop musician. He lives in France with Amy Rigby, a collectable, delectable American pop musicienne. Eric started his recording career with Stiff Records in 1842. In 1931 he invented both the TV set and the rotary speaker cabinet which he named after his Uncle Leslie. Don't believe anything you read in Wikapaedia. Don't believe half of what you read anywhere. Please send all money orders etc via www.wrecklesseric.com.

Mark G, Monday, 21 December 2009 07:51 (nine years ago) Permalink

three years pass...

"The Donovan of Trash" is the perfect name for a perfect record.

I want to dig up some Len Bright Combo - great link on the One Note Guitar Solo thread.

brio, Monday, 13 May 2013 20:53 (five years ago) Permalink

Have sadly missed him live a zillion times. Maybe I should go see him in Baltimore with Amy Rigby near the end of the month.

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 14 May 2013 01:04 (five years ago) Permalink

love this dude. i didn't even think to look up whether he was still touring, for some reason. that's cool.

Treeship, Tuesday, 14 May 2013 01:06 (five years ago) Permalink

He and Amy tour a fair amount

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 14 May 2013 14:13 (five years ago) Permalink

The first Len Bright Combo album is possibly his most solid album imho. And this is one of his best songs.
I've never been able to get into the second one. These days they are packaged together so whatever.

everything, Tuesday, 14 May 2013 16:48 (five years ago) Permalink

yeah, the 2nd was longer and the songs weren't as good

And I believe Wreck had had enough by then.

Mark G, Tuesday, 14 May 2013 17:51 (five years ago) Permalink

two years pass...

guy's still going! http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/21141-america/

niels, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 11:50 (three years ago) Permalink

Eric had a lot to say about Elvis Costello in his book.

Now Elvis has his out, so far I've seen one mention of Eric.

Seems there's a bit of the old mutual going down.

Mark G, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 11:55 (three years ago) Permalink

I'm not sure I'm able to accept the idea that anything could be wrong with this guy:


niels, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 13:33 (three years ago) Permalink

I've seen mixed reviews of the book.

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 15:41 (three years ago) Permalink

Good site, if you're not hung-up on Instant Updates etc


dow, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 15:49 (three years ago) Permalink

Album sounding pretty good

niels, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 22:22 (three years ago) Permalink

two years pass...

Saw him last night
It's solo guitar no band but far exceeded my expectations, he's still a great performer and definitely not phoning it in

The Desus & Mero Chain (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Sunday, 8 July 2018 20:24 (seven months ago) Permalink

I recently bought a dvd in a thrift store - a documentary about Eric from about a decade ago. Almost nothing about this on the internet other than the directors own blog. Still haven't watched it.

everything, Monday, 9 July 2018 01:50 (seven months ago) Permalink

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