Wreckless Eric bringing his Whole Wide World to Australasia
Wreckless Eric. Joe Mabel photo.
Talk about Wreckless Eric and what immediately comes to mind is his enduring hit "Whole Wide World" – covered in stadiums and sheds from Aberdeen to Alabama – but there’s a whole lot more to the story than just that.
With more than 40 years of recording and touring behind him he shuns the dictates of nostalgia and doesn’t do comebacks for the simple reason that he never went away. Except maybe where the Antipodes are concerned and where he'll be touring for the first time in 28 years in November.
An original Stiff Records artist in 1977 alongside Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe, the Damned and Ian Dury, Wreckless Eric is one of England’s great underground songwriters.
His classic “Whole Wide World” has been covered by the Monkees, Green Day, the Replacements, the Proclaimers, Will Ferrell (in Stranger Than Fiction) and even Marilyn Manson. Mental as Anything, whose Reg Mombassa & Peter O’Doherty are special guests for one of Eric’s Sydney shows, had a hit with the song themselves in the ‘90s.
It stands alongside the Only Ones’ "Another Girl Another Planet" and the Undertones’ "Teenage Kicks" as one of the evergreens of the punk era. His other hits from that time include "Semaphore Signals", "Reconnez Cherie", "Hit & Miss Judy", "Broken Doll" and "A Pop Song".
In 1981 Wreckless Eric (aka Eric Goulden) left Stiff Records, turned his back on mainstream success and went underground. He formed a fiercely independent garage band, The Len Bright Combo, with two ex-members of The Milkshakes and released a couple of DIY albums.
A string of completely homemade albums followed – "Le Beat Group Electrique", "The Donovan Of Trash", "12 O’ClockStereo", "Karaoke", "Bungalow Hi", each with a unique character. Though his work was often derided and frequently misunderstood he toured relentlessly, playing to small audiences across the UK, mainland Europe and the United States.
In 2006 he formed a band with his wife, the American songwriter and musician Amy Rigby. They made three albums together as Wreckless Eric & Amy Rigby and carried on the non-stop touring until 2015 when Fire Records reissued Eric’s post-Stiff Records output and a new Wreckless Eric album, "amERICa", to critical acclaim.
Eric’s post-Stiff work has had an impact on a younger generation of artists, including bands such as the Pink Tiles, Dick Diver, Scott & Charlene’s Wedding and the Girlatones, members of whom will be opening shows for Eric on his Antipodean tour this November.
Wreckless Eric has not toured in Australia and New Zealand since 1980. He says he was busy, it was a long way, and nobody ever asked him.
Eric will perform completely solo with acoustic and electric guitars – he has no need of a band, so please don’t ask – his shows are loud, dissonant, lyrical, gently melodic, uplifting and strangely moving. He plays material spanning his whole career, including tracks from his acclaimed new album "Construction Time & Demolition", a musically complex trawl through the psyche of a man with plenty to say and nothing to lose.
WRECKLESS ERIC AUSTRALIA & NEW ZEALAND TOUR 2018
Nov 07 Wellington - San Fran with special guest tbc
Nov 08 Christchurch - Blue Smoke with special guest tbc
Nov 09 Auckland -Tuning Fork with special guest Will Saunders
Nov 11 Melbourne – The Tote with special guests Craig Dermody (Scott & Charlene’s Wedding) + Pink Tiles duo (Mara & Victoria)
Nov 14 Adelaide – The Gov with special guests tbc
Nov 15 Sydney – Factory Theatre with special guests Reg Mombassa & Peter O’Doherty (Mental As Anything, Dog Trumpet) + Nic Dalton (Half A Cow Records, Lemonheads)
Nov 16 Sydney - Petersham Bowling Club with special guest Natalie de Silver (The Dandelion)
Nov 17 Hardys Bay - Hardys Bay Club with DJ Rusty Hopkinson (You Am I)
Nov 18 Canberra – The Basement with special guest Nick Craft (Sidewinder)
Nov 22 Brisbane – The Triffid with special guests tbc
Nov 23 Castlemaine - Theatre Royal with special guests Sleeper & Snake (Amy Hill & Al Montfort)
Nov 24 Melbourne – Northcote Social Club (matinee) with special guests Girlatones duo (Jesse & Leah)
Nov 24 Melbourne – Caravan Club (evening) with special guests John Dowler (Zimmermen) & Mark McCartney
Nov 26 Perth – The Rosemount with special guest Joe Bludge (Painkillers)