The Undertones

Main Stage, Friday 2015

The Undertones

The Undertones emerged from Derry in 1977, the result of five friends learning how to play guitar and drums in time with someone singing. Inspired by listening to mail order records, reading NME and John Peel’s wonderful show on BBC Radio One they began practicing in their bedrooms. Eventually the band recorded Teenage Kicks in 1978. The legendary DJ John Peel loved the record and liked it so much he played it twice in a row on his radio show!

The Undertones - Teenage Kicks
The Undertones - Teenage Kicks

For the following five years, John O Neill, his younger brother Damian, Feargal Sharkey, Billy Doherty and Michael Bradley crafted further numerous punkpop gems such as Here Comes The Summer, Jimmy Jimmy, My Perfect Cousin, You’ve Got My Number (Why Don’t You Use It) and four LPs. In 1983 Feargal Sharkey left the band to pursue a solo career and the remaining members decided to call it a day. In 1999 the band reconvened to once again perform their two-minute, three and a half chord songs to a new generation of fans. Paul McLoone replaced Sharkey on vocals and his vocal prowess and electric onstage presence won over fans and critics.

Soon the band released a new CD of new songs called Get What You Need, which was critically acclaimed by Q magazine, Uncut, Rolling Stone and Hot Press. From that CD the songs Thrill Me, I Need Your Love The Way It Used To Be and Everything But You have become favorites of the bands live set. In 2003 Thrill Me was released as a limited edition 7ʺ vinyl single and found its way to John Peels turntable. He introduced it on his show commenting, “And these are words I thought I would never be saying on radio again, a new single from The Undertones”. He liked it so much he played it twice, just as he did with Teenage Kicks. In 2007 the band recorded and released a collection of short, sharp songs under the title Dig Yourself Deep.

In recent years the band have been working on new songs and performing around the world to old and new fans. 2013 marked the 35th anniversary of the release of Teenage Kicks. The band continue to maintain their scorching live reputation with festivals performances and club shows around the globe. We can’t wait for them to play for us on Friday night at Wychwood.