Formed in Dublin in 1991, Pet Lamb comprised Dylan Phillips (guitar, vocals), Brian Mooney (guitar, vocals), Kevin Talbot (bass) and James Lillis (drums). Influenced by the hardcore assault of the Butthole Surfers and Jesus Lizard, with the songwriting shared between Phillips and Mooney, they admitted to their central inspiration being ‘a mixture of lust, beer, frustration and boredom’. The band was first adopted by small independent imprint Blunt, a liaison that produced two EPs, and brought about support slots to the musically sympathetic Therapy?, NoMeansNo, Babes In Toyland and others. After a session for the John Peel programme, Roadrunner Records snapped up the band, packing them off to Dublin’s Sonic Studios to record their debut for the label, ‘Black Mask’. In its wake came a debut album, Sweaty Handshake, propelled by songs such as the defiant ‘Insult To Injury’ and self-loathing ‘Fun With Maggots’. The band was subsequently dropped by Roadrunner, returning to independent label status for 1998’s Tenderness.
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