AWOL - The column that asks, whatever happened to...?

CUD

Who were Cud?

In these days of ever-changing line-ups sent to try us here at the AWOL desk, Cud's remained satisfyingly and reassuringly stable. On drums: Mr. Steve Goodwin. On bass: Mr. William Potter. On guitar: Mr. Mike Dunphy. And, finally. ladies and gentlemen, the god-like Carl Puttnam supplied the vocals. They were formed in 1987 in Leeds and rapidly became that town's favourite sons, making some amends for the horror of goth which Leads had become synonymous with. Mind you, some are of the opposite opinion - that Cud personified the unbearable, warty and humorous underbelly of everything that was despicable about indie music.They were, of course, wrong.

What died they sound like?

To be fair, when they first started they did sound like a barrel of twats. Signed to The Wedding Present's Reception label their very early recordings were quite horrible but did reveal Puttnam's full-bodied baritone as a voice to listen out for.

Cud developed their funksome leanings as timewent by, and also started a run of amusing cover versions which all became firm live favourites. The Kinks' "Lola" was an obvious Cud cover candidate its melody slotting nicely into their own skewed way of doing things, as did Hot Chocolate's overwrought 'You Sexy Thing". Cud's uptight, scratchy inch. funk was contrasted by Carl Puttnam's unique wailings, the combination made tham hugely entertaining and a top five draw to boot.

Greatest success?

Where to start? Well, they were one of the few indie bands who could reliably fill the venues they played, and their popularity put all their indie releases into the Indie charts until they started getting chased around by major labels offering large amounts of money and real chart action. Funnily enough, when the band settled on A&M Records ("Because they had the trumpet," the band claimed in reference to the label's logo), chart hits came thick and fast. Sort of. This may come as a shock to you, but they actually had three top 40 hits and several more respectable respectable hcat positions.

Their major label album debut, "Asquarius", made Number 30 too. In terms of their best record, AWOL's humble opinion is that "When in Rome, Kill Me" a largely incomprehensible concept album, remains their highest achievement. The lifted single, "Only A Prawn In Whitby", with its lush string quartet version still brings tears to AWOL eyes.

Low point?

1996 wasn't so good. Diminishing returns at A&M meant that the band lost their deal. Carl also suffered a double fracture of one of his legs whilst being evicted from a flat. How the mighty are fallen. Still, let's not dwell on the negatives eh?

What The Maker said:

"Cud are a f***ing disgrace. Cud are a nightmare. I've always lazily ignored these snub-nosed rodent's naff aproximation of student driven pop-funk and so only tonight does the enormity, the sheer horror of the rampant abomination that is Cud seep into my aghast conciousness. Cud live are an utter abortion. a homicide-inducing catastrophe." Yes, Mr. Gittins, but did you like them?

Are they still going?

They have survived their annus horribiis. Despite other commitments (Steve Goodwin has been doing sterling work for another band in drum department of late and William Potter earns a crust by cartooning), Cud are currently engaged in the time-honoured work of putting songs together for a new, unnamed record label. Unnamed because they don't know who it's going to be yet. However, confidence is high that an LP will have surfaced by next spring And if Tom Jones doesn't do a cover version of "Strange Kind a Love" by the year's end we'll buy you a drink.

Next week. ANASTACIA SCREAMED