This Nottingham, England-based outfit were grouped with other English bands of the late 90s, including Gomez, the Unbelievable Truth and Witness, owing to their perceived musical and lyrical earnestness. This serious image gained them the rather derogatory and unrepresentative ‘stool rock’ tag. Songwriter Gavin Clarke originally met film director Shane Meadows when both were working in dead-end jobs at the Alton Towers leisure park. Several years later, Meadows contacted Clarke to provide songs for the soundtrack to his acclaimed low-budget film, Small Time. Clarke quickly formed a band for the work, recruiting guitarist Paul Bacon and two former members of indie band the Telescopes, bass player Robert Brooks (b. 11 April 1969, Burton-upon-Trent, Staffordshire, England) and drummer Dominic Dillon (b. 26 September 1964, Bolton, Lancashire, England). The band signed a contract with Independiente Records and completed further soundtrack work for Meadows’ feature-length debut, Twenty-Four Seven. The limited edition Small Time EP and single ‘Monkey Dread’ introduced the band’s full-length debut, Crazy On The Weekend, released in 1998. Working with producer John Reynolds (Sinéad O’Connor), the band continued their practice of recording outside a studio environment. Their acoustic-based songs were augmented by washes of strings and organ, earning comparisons to Nick Drake, Tom Waits and Beth Orton. Clarke’s cinéma vérité style lyrics, meanwhile, soared above their soundtrack origins. Sadly, this proved to be the only Sunhouse release. Clarke later recorded with Clayhill.
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