Lost links & Re-ups

On any post, if the link is no longer good, leave a comment if you want the music re-uploaded. As long as I still have the file, or the record, cd, or cassette to re-rip, I will gladly accommodate in a timely manner all such requests.

Slinging tuneage like some fried or otherwise soused short-order cook

30 July 2014

Just Kicking the Gong in the (Opium) Den


Inca Babies were post-punk purveyors of the 80s Manchester England sound combined with influences like Link Wray, Birthday Party, The Gun Club, & The Cramps. Inca Babies arose from the failed gentrification project of the 'Cities in the Sky' Hulme Cresents. Intended for young executives, the area quickly decayed into cockroach infested concrete cubicles inhabited mostly by students, squatters, & punks, drug addicts & dealers.

The band was formed by Harry Stafford - guitar, Bill 'Bonney' Marten - bass, Julian Woropay – vocals, & Alan Brown – drums.

Their debut single The Interior was released in November 1983 on their own Black Lagoon label. Its follow-up Grunt Cadillac Hotel reached number 6 in the UK indie chart in 1984. Their Big Jugular EP & follow-up single The Judge both made the indie top 10. A number three slot for their debut album Rumble  in 1985 led to tours of Germany, Holland, Belgium, France, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Austria, & Scandinavia.

Three more albums followed in as many years as the band consolidated their sound: This Train (1986); Opium Den EP (1987); & Evil Hour (1988).  Inca Babies also recorded four sessions for BBC Radio’s John Peel Show between 1984 & 1986.

Despite an ever-changing line-up of drummers & singers around the core of Stafford & Marten, the band released a further six singles. Clint Boon of Inspiral Carpets played keyboards on Evil Hour & as noted, Hulme multi-instrumentalist Alan Brown of bIG fLAME & The Great Leap Forward bands was also drummer for a time. The band called it quits by 1989. Marten & Stafford re-grouped under the new name Hound God with a Tumour for a short while in the 90s.

In 2006 Cherry Red released a 'Best of' compilation Plutonium. The band reformed a year later & recruited Gold Blade drummer Rob Haynes. This line-up performed at several venues in the UK & Stafford began work on a new album until the sudden death of Bill Marten in August 2008 put an end to those plans.
This is what Harry Stafford had to say about Opium Den:
       ''The Incas change direction. I took over on vocals and found that I could get the songs to do more of what I wanted them to do, so the overall effect here is rather pleasing. ''Devil in my Room'' and ''Big Cypress'' are favourites and we still play ''Opium Den'' to this day. If Rumble is our five star album this is our four and a half star album. We did a video of ''Opium Den'' with young, very keen filmmakers Adam T. Burton and Mick Conefrey in China Town and a Hulme flat that was made to belittle the Yacht Rock videos of people like Duran Duran and Ultravox. Looking at it now it's just quite brilliant and stands as a great piece of archive/document on 80s counterculture. ''

On Opium Den, Inca Babies is: Harry Stafford – vocals & guitar; Darren Bullows – guitar; Bill 'Bonney' Marten – bass, & Pete Boggs – drums with Wyatt Earp – piano. Recorded at Out of the Blue February 1987.

Inca Babies – Opium Den EP, Black Lagoon Records INCMLP012, 1987.
decryption code in comments

Side 1 –
Opium Den
Devil in My Room
Ramblin' Man

Side 2 –
Big Cypress (spelled Cyprus on record)
A Grim Thought



  1. ftL92yjisJcxr4XBj0kuN4-68LhP_rnqlioZqLvQ2Ac

  2. Ain't heard this in years. Tak.

    1. It had been a while for me, too. I was digging through the piles, looking for the soundtrack of the day, & there she be...

  3. Classic band love the old photos of the Punx Picnic on Otterburn Close good times in the squats there

    1. I can only imagine & yearn to have been. Thanks for the words. Inca Babies...indeed classic.