From the Scared To Get Happy booklet:-

Despite being extremely prolific, this Liverpool band remained a best-kept secret, overshadowed by the city’s more visible cousins Echo & The Bunnymen and The Teardrop Explodes. Fronted by Dave Jackson, they made two moody homegrown singles for own label Box in 1980/81, ‘Waiting Room’ and ‘Bated Breath’, plus a cassette album ‘Bitter Reaction’, attracting comparisons with Joy Division.

By 1982 a move to Red Flame coincided with more melodic songs, epitomised by the epic, uplifting tones of ‘Things Have Learned To Walk That Ought To Crawl’ and album ‘Indoor Fireworks’. After mini-LP ‘Clear! (1983), The Room collaborated with Tom Verlaine on final album ‘In Evil Hour’.

Jackson later founded Benny Profane with Room bassist Becky Stringer before playing with Dust and The Dead Cowboys. His 2010 solo album, ‘Cathedral Mountain’ was recorded with John Head (Pale Fountains, Shack) and Tim O’Shea (Send No Flowers).

mp3: The Room – Things Have Learnt To Walk That Ought To Crawl

This is another great find from the boxset.  Dave Jackson has the sort of voice that makes my ears prick up and the song bounces along at a great pace.  It’s not ground-breaking or anything, but it’s a fine example of the stuff I was dancing to in the students union back in 1982 – and what about those wonderful ‘la-la-la-las’ just before the instrumental break which is Bunnyesque in so many ways.

I’ve dug deep to come up with the b-side.

mp3: The Room – Dream Of Flying

I was listening to a great deal of fine music in 1982 and by the sounds of it, The Room should have found their way into the collection.  It just goes to show how much stuff is still out there lying undiscovered.



  1. Saw them live at a very quiet Nightmoves supporting the Red Guitars and they were great but didn’t quite think the records lived up to that. The Jackpot Jack 12″ does though – a Peel session with half the songs from the then current LP. Benny Profane were great too although I only heard them properly 3 or 4 years ago.

    Dave and another former Room-mate are releasing albums as The Room in the Woods.

  2. The A side is also available on the Cherry Red “Revolutionary Spirit” box (book?) set which is full of great tracks like this. As with you JC, the early to mid eighties was my peak buying period, and yet this completely passed me by. It really was a period of ridiculous fertility in music, both quantity and quality. Thanks for the b-side digging as well. Makes it clear that they had more than just the one track!

  3. This piece triggered a distant memory of me having an album, so a rummage through the vinyl, which only came down from the attic 3 years ago, and yes I do have ‘In Evil Hour’. Back in the day I must have listened to it a couple of days and not been too impressed as I have no recollection of what it sounds like – that’s the weekend listening sorted – cheers

  4. Having listened to ‘In Evil Hour’ over the weekend, its ok but not up there with the best of the era, unfortunately not a hidden/forgotten gem

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