Today’s lot must have had one of the most unenviable tasks in post-punk history when, at the Glasgow Apollo in November 1982, they were the support act on the night we knew that The Jam were playing their final Scottish gig on their farewell tour.

Most people just couldn’t wait for APB to get off the stage but from what I can remember they gave a tremendous account of themselves never letting the occasion or the impatience of the crowd ruin their performance.  They were from Aberdeen and by the time they were on the stage that night they had already released four singles on the locally based Oily Records.  Their sound was very much focussed on funk and soul,  and with Paul Weller increasingly demonstrating his own love for the genres, it was no surprise that he declared himself a fan.

Despite having such a high-profile champion, APB never enjoyed any commercial success.  After a fifth single for Oily they signed to Albion Records in early 1984 for whom they released two singles which, although ignored at home, found much popularity on the dance floor of a number of clubs in New York and led to the band becoming regulars on the local gig circuit as well as enjoying exposure through college radio.

The band worked particularly hard between 1985 and 1987 with a number of singles being released on Link Records in the USA as well as on their own Red River imprint at home.  All to no avail in terms of fame and fortune.

I used to have a couple of APB singles from the early days but lost them many many years ago.  I did however, unearth a 12″ single, from the Albion era, in a charity shop around a year ago and here’s one of the tracks from it:-

mp3 : APB – Crazy Grey

It was recorded for the David ‘Kid’ Jensen show on BBC Radio 1 in June 1982. What is most bizarre about the information on the back of the sleeve is that you could write to the band c/o Oily Records in Aberdeen but the group’s management was based in New York which indicates I guess where the band’s hearts and minds really lay.


8 thoughts on “SATURDAY’S SCOTTISH SONG : #10 : APB

  1. Can’t remember the year exactly but you couldn’t go to a club in NYC without hearing ‘Shoot You Down’. Got no radio play, of course, but it was a massive club hit. Must have been 80-81 or so. Echorich, you remember?

  2. Excellent track! Between around 1981 & 1984, I used to keep a list of stuff I’d heard on the radio with a view to buying as and when I had any money. APB were on it – could have been that Jensen session perhaps. Never did see any of their stuff to buy though. The list died in 1984 with the arrival of a student grant….

  3. Excellent band and excellent track. I used to really like APB and remember them playing in Dundee’s Tayside Bar, a music venue with a room not much bigger than a telephone box which made you feel you were almost part of the band. Aberdonians and Dundonians don’t have much mutual love, but crap like that was thrown aside. Ah, those days…

  4. Alas, Echorich is not able to answer the computer right now. Any minute now he is taking in Ms. Billie Ray Martin in Berlin. As his legally appointed representative, I’ll add that “yes!” “Shoot You Down” was one that bubbled under something fierce. I never sat foot on any NYC dancefloors in the day, so you’ll have to wait for Echorich to get back to you on that, but I recall seeing the video played on “Night Flight” around ’84-’85, and when I chanced to see the ’85 Link Records comp, “Something To Believe In” [finally] in Cleveland’s Record Revolution in Cleveland some time a decade later, I snatched the LP up. Still haven’t played it. […long story… for my analyst]

  5. apologies….just lifted something from t’internet and took it as gospel. Have changed image. Thanks for the heads-up

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