Ok so why all the fuss over a band that released one single. Simple. Like the Killjoys and Users there's more to the story than just a song. Edmund Garrity AKA Ed Banger's story criss crosses through vital moments in punk that makes it impossible to ignore and at times so improbable that a film script could or should be made.
Wythenshaw Manchester spawned two sets of mates in bands enjoying a friendly rivalry - Slaughter & The Dogs and Wild Ram. Wild Ram (I keep thinking of Bill & Teds Wild Stallion!) were formed by Ed and Toby in their kitchen originally playing Beatles covers before moving on to play heavy metal complete with long solos and legs apart quo boogieisms
Its late 1976 and these two bands going nowhere were about to change: Having played the Lesser Free Trade Hall Manchester once to about 30 people The Sex Pistols were returning again but this time with more publicity momentum and a buzz about them. While Slaughter & The Dogs managed to get on the bill, Ed failed and instead was roadie for the Dogs.
On the night violence flared and Edmund bleeding from a head wound from a bottle and his mate Pete with a nosebleed the immortal lines were uttered by someone:
You're a right bloody mob aren't you? Headbanger here and him with a nosebleed.
And so a bands name came into being.
Following the Pistols visit and the emergent punk rock scene Wild Ram became Ed Banger & The Nosebleeds who, like so many other bands, changed and adopted a more punk look and sound. As Wild Ram they had been unable to get gigs or played to 15 people. Now as a punk band "We ....had a single out, it was like 400 people at a concert."
How serious were they about punk? In a documentary about the band Toby the drummer interviewed recounts how they changed for the money and gigs and how "I don't like punk rockers. Personally I hate them...everyone has some hecklers...ours is the whole audience!" Ed in the Punk77 interview recounts 'After spilling our blood for the punk cause damn right we regarded ourselves as true punks but we still got labelled bandwagon jumpers. Virtually every band after the Pistols suffered the same but in a sense everybody but the Pistols were bandwagon jumpers you know what I mean.'
A one off single with Rabid Records (1977) with I Ain't Been To No Music School / Fascist Pigs, a spot on Tony Wilson's TV programme So It Goes and gigs in the the capital at venues like The Roxy should have been a springboard to success. Instead it wasn't. There was no money and noone got a penny for the single despite it selling 10,000 copies. The band started to argue, Vinnie Faal their long time manager was sacked and Ed and Vini left the band.
Vini Reilley .... "I'd told the rest of the band that we'd be confrontationalists." Vini counters. "So for example when we played the Roxy in London, which was the venue to play, even though we had a full set of songs, I said 'No, we're just going to play two songs all night, that's it, and keep playing the same two songs and wind them up' which we did. The audience went absolutely beserk, and consequently we were asked to play again and again, because that was what was required. But I would also do things like sit with my back to the audience and play a very melodic guitar piece, which was what I'd always been doing all my life anyway, and the punks were totally confused by this, and baffled and maybe hostile, but at least it was a reaction, and I thought that was valid."