The Deviants (band)  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Deviants (formerly The Social Deviants) were an English rock group originally active in the late 1960s, but still used as a vehicle for the musical work of writer Mick Farren.

Farren has stated that The Deviants were originally a community band which "did things every now and then – it was a total assault thing with a great deal of inter-relation and interdependence". Musically, Farren described their sound as "teeth-grinding, psychedelic rock" somewhere between the Stooges and The Mothers of Invention. The Deviants have been described as a transition between classic British psych and the Punk/Heavy Metal aesthetic of the 1970s. They were the first act to ever be introduced as a Punk rock band by the underground DJ Jeff Dexter at Tiles Club in London’s Oxford Street, August 15th 1967.




The Social Deviants were founded by singer/writer Mick Farren (born Michael Anthony Farren, 3 September 1943, in Gloucester, Gloucestershire) in 19676 out of the Ladbroke Grove UK Underground community, featuring Pete Munro on bass; Clive Muldoon on guitar, who soon left and were replaced by Sid Bishop on guitar, Cord Rees on bass and Russell Hunter on drums (born Barry Russell Hunter, 26 April 1946, in Woking, Surrey). The band shortened their name simply to The Deviants after Munro and Muldoon left and, with the financial backing of a 21 year old son of a millionaire Farren had befriended, independently recorded their debut album Ptooff!, selling copies through the UK Underground press before it was picked up by Decca Records.

Rees left the band in June 1967 to be replaced by Farren's flatmate Duncan Sanderson (born 21 December 1948, in Carlisle, Cumbria) and the band released a second album Disposable through Stable Records.

Bishop married and left the band and, at the suggestion of Jamie Mandelkau, Farren recruited Canadian guitarist Paul Rudolph (born 14 June 1947, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada). This band recorded and released the album The Deviants 3 through Transatlantic Records and embarked upon a west coast tour of North America, during which the relationship between Farren and the musicians became personally and musically strained, with Farren quitting the band and returning to England.

On returning to England, Farren teamed up with Twink (born John Charles Alder, 29 November 1944, in Colchester, Essex) and Steve Peregrin Took (born Stephen Ross Porter, 28 July 1949, in Eltham, South East London) to record the album Mona – The Carnivorous Circus before concentrating on music journalism. When the three remaining musicians returned to England, they also teamed up with Twink to form the Pink Fairies.

1970s onwards

In the mid-1970s, Farren was offered a one-off deal by Stiff Records to record an EP, Screwed Up, which was released under the name Mick Farren and the Deviants. The musicians on this record included Rudolph, former Pink Fairies/Motörhead guitarist Larry Wallis, former Warsaw Pakt bassist Andy Colquhoun and former Hawkwind drummer Alan Powell. This band, without Rudolph, went on to record the album Vampires Stole My Lunch Money and the non-album single "Broken Statue", both credited to Mick Farren rather than The Deviants.

At the end of the 1970s Farren again concentrated on his writing and relocated to New York. He would resurrect The Deviants name for occasional live performances, such as in February 1984 when he teamed up with Wayne Kramer and Wallis' band which featured Sanderson and drummer George Butler. This set was released as Human Garbage.

Farren sporadically performs and records under the name The Deviants using a pool of musicians which include Colquhoun and former Blodwyn Pig saxophonist Jack Lancaster. Eating Jello With A Heated Fork was released in 1996, credited to Deviants IXVI, followed by 2002's Dr Crow.


Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "The Deviants (band)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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