The June Brides were featured as part of the 2015 series that looked back at all the songs on the compilation CD86 : 48 Songs From The Birth of Indiepop. At the time I wrote:-

“There’s a case to be made that this lot had no right to be part of CD86. They had formed in London back in 1983 and the following year saw two cracking singles released on Pink Records. Twelve months later the debut LP (albeit it only had 8 tracks including the two old songs and a cover version) came out, again on Pink Records, and went to the top of the indie charts and was one of the best-selling and most popular of the genre in 1985.

Come 1986, the year that saw the birth of indie-pop according to one OTT statement on the sleeve of CD 86, The June Brides had moved to a new label called In-Tape on which there were two further singles as well as the honour of opening for The Smiths on their tour of Ireland. However, before the year was out the band had decided to call it a day with lead singer and songwriter Phil Wilson shortly afterwards embarking on a solo career.”

My big book of indie music reveals that absolutely everything The June Brides wrote and recorded, with the exception of their final single, pre-dated 1986. They were a band who never hid the fact of who their biggest influences were, and in the same way as Jonathan Richman had paid tribute to his beloved Velvet Underground by writing a song about them, so too did Phil Wilson pen a tribute to Josef K, and in particular what he felt was the tragedy of them breaking up:-

mp3 : The June Brides – Josef’s Gone

The song was stuck away as one of the two additional tracks made available on the 12″ release of their third single and their first release for new label In Tape.

mp3 : The June Brides – No Place Called Home

It’s a fine little tune that sold in decent enough numbers to hit #3 on the Indie Charts in December 1985 but by this time the main singer and songwriter was getting disillusioned with things and the band called it a day some six months later.

Here’s the b-side of the single and the other extra track on the 12″:-

mp3 : The June Brides – We Belong
mp3 : The June Brides – On The Rocks

The use of the trumpet and viola gave the band a unique sound. They really deserved to have enjoyed far more success than they experienced. Maybe just a wee bit too ahead of their time as their sort of sound became more fashionable in the early 90s by which time Phil Wilson was working as a tax inspector.

As I’ve said before, there really is no justice in the world of pop music.



  1. Maybe they never got to live in the C86 house but they drew the blueprint with ‘Every Conversation.’

  2. My friends’ band , Black Sick , reached their pinnicle in supporting the june brides when they came to think it was eithet Boston of Peterborough. As you can imagine by their name there wasnt much jangling in their songs

  3. This makes my day. Thanks for featuring my favorite band from that era. Should have been huge! After the June Brides disbanded, Phil Wilson had a couple of very good but largely ignored singles on Creation before hanging it up. In ’89, Bob Stanley released the Better Days 7″ on his Caff label with this note from Phil as the insert. To say he had soured on the industry is an understatement:

    ‘Better Days’ and ‘You Won’t Speak’ were recorded as demos in Spring 1988 by myself and Andrew Innes at the Acid Factory (this is a rather silly name for his spare bedroom). Creation were no longer interested in releasing my stuff and I couldn’t be bothered to tout around looking for a new deal. So the songs have languished on a shelf ever since. I, in the meantime, stopped being a shiny pop person and became a boring old Civil Servant – a position that suits me down to the ground. At the moment I have no plans or desire to return to the cesspool of the music business. Thanks to Caff, however, for releasing this, and to you for buying it!

    Phil Wilson

    Thankfully, Wilson has come back to us, first with the Industrial Strength single in 2008, followed by the solo album God Bless Jim Kennedy in 2010. Members of the June Brides appeared on the album, and it wasn’t too long before the band reunited with singles A January Moon in 2012 and She Seems Quite Free in 2014. It was just like old times. Even Jon and Frank returned with their trumpet and violin/viola, respectfully. These are all releases fans need to own. Wilson also lent his talents to the Granite Shore’s Once More From The Top, my favorite album of 2015. Yes, I would day Wilson is back! The band has played live several times in recent years. One of these days I’m going to find a way to see them.

  4. Looking back we were pretty generous with those EP tracks. They would have made up an absolutely fantastic LP, that would have by far iclipsed the 8 million stories album. Come to think fans would have got a much better deal getting al those tracks on an LP

  5. Pink records had some great bands,the June brides,McCarthy and a compilation or two with Wolfgang press the bands I’ve mentioned and that petrol emotion.the June brides were bracketed with bands they had no possible links with,but let’s make a scene.?.loved their music and always a place in my heart for them,thank you.”.

  6. JTFL is absolutely correct…it’s their blueprint…their music still has currency, sounding as fresh and earnest as it did 34 years ago.

  7. Frank….with huge apologies for taking so long to reply and say a huge thank you, not just for the comment but for being part of such a fantastic and hugely under appreciated band. It was a huge thrill to see your name appear at this little corner of the internet

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