‘Electric Brew’ – New Musical Express – Thrills – July 1988

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RADIO ONE’S Andy Kershaw turned record-plugger after being seduced by the current, infectious 45 by Edinburgh five-piece AV0-8. Falling for its resounding fusion of the Darling Buds and Girls At Our Best, Kershaw spun ‘IsThisThe End’ on his show and then offered to take copies round to Radio One’s daytime DJs.

Simon Mayo and Steve Wnght both played the single and John Peel has been on the case too. “We thought it might be more prestigious to be played by Peel,” says vocalist Jan Hastie.’ But then I thought of my poor old mum waiting to hear it and having to listen to Extreme Noise Terror! At least Kershaw plays some nice things.”

‘Is This The End’ on the band’s Avo label (through Fast Forward), is a bristling, bobbling pop song, laced with rich vocals and a sharp hookline. After three years with the present line-up (Jan, Steve Hastie-guitar, George Glen- bass, Claire Gourlay- vocals and Kenny Gourlay – drums), it’s a pointer to the band’s punchiness which has also earned them a Kershaw session.

But just what exactly is an Avo-8? “Well if anyone asks, we’re telling them it’s a cocktail,” replies Jan, a hint of skullduggery in the air. “We’re saying it’s a mixture of advocat, vodka and orange juice with eight pieces of Ice.

“But really it’s an electric meter that measures volts and ohms- only we don’t want people to know that because AVO is a trade name and we might get sued!”

Steve Lamacq

New Musical Express – Thrills – 2 July, 1988

Big Car Single

Big Car  7″ & 12″ Single  Feb 1989  © Cherry Red Records  Cherry 102
Recorded at Pier House Studios, Edinburgh
Produced by AVO-8   Engineered by Ian K. Beveridge

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‘In Tune With Radio 1’ – Sunday Post – 1987

‘It’s a long hard slog, but we are getting there, slowly but surely.’ So speaks Steve Hastie, guitarist with up and coming Edinburgh rock band AVO-8.

Steve and his fellow band members had just returned from London after completing a recording session for Radio One DJ Andy Kershaw, who has taken AVO-8 under his wing.

Kershaw and his Radio One colleagues Steve Wright and John Peel have all given air-play to the band’s single Is This The End?

Inevitably, perhaps even sadly, comparisons are always made when a new band comes on the scene. In that vein I would suggest that AVO-8 sound like a softer and more listenable version of the Rezillos. It would seem the band is part of the current revival of pop-punk music which is evident on the airwaves.

The make up of AVO-8 is a story in itself. There are two married couples within the ranks. Steve is married to one of the outfit’s vocalists, Jan Hastie, while drummer Kenny Gourlay is married to the band’s other singer Claire. The fifth member of the AVO-8 is bass player George Glen.

The two girls lead from the front and are very much the focal point of the band. AVO-8 pride themselves in the fact that they don’t settle for the usual sound of the indie band cliques or all into progressive rock cliches. Instead, they stick to what they know best – tightly crafted pop.

AVO-8 recently completed a number of gigs in the Edinburgh area and are now heading further afield, playing Newcastle and Dundee.

Steve Hastie told the Post: ‘Our biggest break so far has been the response from Radio one, especially Andy Kershaw. ‘After playing the single on his late night show he mentioned that copies of the record should be sent to his daytime comrades and if the band was listening they should send some singles to him and he would do it for them. ‘We spoke to him and sent some copies. The next day he ‘phoned us back saying he had just played it to Steve Wright in the studio and that he loved it and would be playing it.’

But it’s not all fun and games for a band in the situation of AVO-8.

Their single was released on their own record label, AVO Records, funded by the band’s own resources. Steve added: ‘One of the biggest hassles has been chasing A and R men at the record companies.

‘As we don’t have a manager, we do all the chasing ourselves, and it is really time consuming as we are all in full time employment.’

Mark McSherry

Sunday Post – 1987

Edinburgh Music Box Review – New Musical Express – May 1988

The uncrowned kings of cutie rock in one of their past lives, AVO-8 have reformulated their ’60s/punk mix and moved out of the playpen onto the Steve Wright show with their snappy ‘Is This The End’ 45.

The band’s name is old enough to have mastered long division, but the current line-up dates back around two years. The power chords have been turned up a notch, but are sweetened by the twin girly vocals and feisty dancing of Jan and Claire.

As time-served rockers, the guys are now unfashionably capable musicians, though to their credit this is evident more in the absence of breakdowns than outbursts of exhibitionism. It’s slick, good-humoured stuff, though there are the usual nagging doubts about originality. Still, if the Primitives are Blondie, by the same quantum leap of imagination are the new Rezillos.

Alastair McKay

New Musical Express 28 May 1988

Truth About You

 

I’M TELLIN’ YOU WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
THAT I,  I,  I,  I’M NOT LETTIN’ GO
YOU’RE GONNA HAVE TO FACE THE FACT
I’M GONNA GET YOU BACK
YOU’RE NOT GONNA GET AWAY WITH WHAT YOU DID
NO I,  I,  I, I’M GONNA MAKE YOU PAY

IT’S UP TO YOU TO PUT THINGS RIGHT
BUT I, I, I DON’T THINK YOU’RE THAT BRIGHT
YOU’VE GOT A BATTLE ON YOUR HANDS
SO DON’T MAKE ANY PLANS
YOU’RE NOT GONNA GET AWAY SO WHY DON’T YOU JUST
LISTEN FOR A CHANGE, DON’T WALK AWAY

CHORUS

YOU’RE NOT, USED TO PEOPLE WHO FIGHT
YOU WANT, US TO THINK YOU’RE ALRIGHT/WHEN YOU’RE OUT OF SIGHT
I’LL SHOCK YOU, WHEN I START TO TALK
I’LL TELL THEM, THE TRUTH ABOUT YOU/I KNOW WHAT TO DO

YOU’LL HAVE TO KEEP ON LOOKING BACK
‘CAUSE YOU DON’T KNOW WHEN I WILL ATTACK
WHY DON’T YOU GO AWAY FROM HERE
I’VE TRIED TO MAKE IT CLEAR
YOU’RE NOT GONNA GET AWAY, YOU CAN BE SURE THAT
YOU’RE GONNA GET WHAT YOU DESERVE

YOU’RE NOT, USED TO PEOPLE WHO FIGHT
YOU WANT, US TO THINK YOU’RE ALRIGHT/WHEN YOU’RE OUT OF SIGHT
I’LL SHOCK YOU, WHEN I START TO TALK
I’LL TELL THEM, THE TRUTH ABOUT YOU/I KNOW WHAT TO DO

YOU’RE NOT, USED TO PEOPLE WHO FIGHT
YOU WANT, US TO THINK YOU’RE ALRIGHT/WHEN YOU’RE OUT OF SIGHT
I’LL SHOCK YOU, WHEN I START TO TALK
I’LL TELL THEM, THE TRUTH ABOUT YOU/I KNOW WHAT TO DO

Don’t Walk Away

 

I’M CALLING YOUR NAME, YOU’RE NOT LISTENING, TO ME
YOU’RE GOING AWAY AND I WANT YOU TO STAY, WITH ME
WHAT CAN I DO TO GET THROUGH TO YOU?
WHAT CAN I SAY THAT COULD MAKE YOU STAY?

YOU CAN’T TURN YOUR BACK ON WHAT’S HAPPENED, WITH ME
I CAN’T SAY GOODBYE CAUSE I’M SCARED I WILL CRY, FOR YOU
WE USED TO LAUGH, HAVE A GOOD TIME
NOW YOU’RE TELLING ME IT WAS ALL IN MY MIND

CHORUS

BUT YOU’LL NEVER SEE WHAT I WANT YOU TO SEE
NO YOU’LL NEVER KNOW WHAT COULD BE
I WISH YOU’D COME BACK, OR JUST PLEASE TURN AROUND
AND SEE WHAT YOU’RE DOING TO ME
OH PLEASE DON’T WALK AWAY FROM ME
OH PLEASE DON’T WALK AWAY FROM ME

I’M CALLING YOUR NAME, YOU’RE NOT LISTENING TO ME
YOU’RE GOING AWAY AND I WANT YOU TO STAY, WITH ME
WHAT CAN I DO TO GET THROUGH TO YOU?
WHAT CAN I SAY THAT COULD MAKE YOU STAY

BUT YOU’LL NEVER SEE WHAT I WANT YOU TO SEE
NO YOU’LL NEVER KNOW WHAT COULD BE
#I WISH YOU’D COME BACK, OR JUST PLEASE TURN AROUND
AND SEE WHAT YOU’RE DOING TO ME

OH PLEASE DON’T WALK AWAY FROM ME
OH PLEASE DON’T WALK AWAY FROM ME
OH PLEASE DON’T WALK AWAY FROM ME
OH PLEASE DON’T WALK AWAY FROM ME

Big Car

© Cherry Red Records

YOU SAW HER YESTERDAY
SOMEONE DROVE HER AWAY
IN A BIG CAR, IN A BIG CAR

YOU’RE ON YOUR OWN AGAIN
SHE’S FLYING ON A PLANE
TO BE A STAR, TO BE A STAR

CHORUS

SHIMMERING NIGHTS AND DAZZLING DAYS
YOU ALWAYS FELL IN WITH ALL HER WAYS
THOSE WERE THE GOOD TIMES, YOUR HEART WAS ABLAZE
SHE LOVED YOU AND LEFT YOU IN A DAZE

SHE’S ON THE SILVER SCREEN
SHE IS A MOVIE QUEEN
WITH A BIG CAR, WITH A BIG CAR

SHE USED YOU FOR HER GAIN
IN RETURN YOU GOT PAIN
IN YOUR HEART, IN YOUR HEART

SHIMMERING NIGHTS AND DAZZLING DAYS
YOU ALWAYS FELL IN WITH ALL HER WAYS
THOSE WERE THE GOOD TIMES, YOUR HEART WAS ABLAZE
SHE LOVED YOU AND LEFT YOU IN A DAZE

SHE’S ON THE SILVER SCREEN
SHE IS A MOVIE QUEEN
WITH A BIG CAR, WITH A BIG CAR

HE USED YOU FOR HER GAIN
IN RETURN YOU GOT PAIN
IN YOUR HEART, IN YOUR HEART

CHORUS TWICE