Wednesday, July 06, 2022

The Prisoners: The Last Fourfathers 1985 + In From The Cold 1986


The Prisoners were a British garage rock band formed in 1980 in Rochester, Kent, England. Their

1960s garage sound made them a regular live fixture in London's underground "psychedelic revival" and "mod revival" scene of the early 1980s, as well as a linchpin of the Medway scene.

The Prisoners line-up was: Graham Day (Vocal and Guitar), James Taylor (Vox Continental and Hammond Organ), Allan Crockford (Bass) and Johnny Symons (Drums). Fans speculated about the origin of the band's name, with many believing it was derived from the 1960s TV series The Prisoner; however, Graham Day later stated that it came from the title of the first single by The Vapors (who later

scored a hit with Turning Japanese). The band's sound combined catchy, retro-flavoured melodies, punky guitar riffs, a distinctive vocal style and a lead instrument of the then-unfashionable Vox Continental organ. Part of the Medway scene, often referred to as the 'Medway Delta', they often toured with Thee Milkshakes, with whom they appeared in an edition of Channel 4's The Tube dressed in Star Trek outfits. The band were adopted by the Mod revival, despite never considering themselves a mod band, and are widely considered to be one of the best bands from the 1980s mod scene. The Prisoners didn't have much commercial success during their active years, but were later hailed as an influence on the Madchester sound of bands such as The Charlatans.

This mod-influenced 60s revival band originated from the UK’s Medway Valley in Kent. Chief songwriter Graham Day (guitar/vocals), Allan Crockford (bass), James Taylor (Hammond organ) and

Johnny Symons (drums) emerged in 1982 with a rough and raucous debut, A Taste Of Pink, on their Own Up label. A contract with the Ace Records subsidiary Big Beat yielded The Wisermiserdemelza in 1983, a far more laid-back, considered effort that ranged from powerful, 60s-influenced rock (the single ‘Hurricane’) to tranquil ballads. The EP Electric Fit followed in 1984 and was notable for the excellent ‘Melanie’.

The band was featured on UK television’s The Tube with other Big Beat acts, celebrated on the EP Four On Four: Trash On The Tube, the Prisoners contributing the awesome ‘Reaching My Head’. The

band was unhappy with the sound on their second album and returned to Own Up for 1985’s The Last Fourfathers, a less slick production, but a more mature offering. It was enough to secure a recording contract with Stiff Records /Countdown, but from the start relations between band and label were poor. Although In From The Cold was an impressive album, it was far poppier and cleaner than the Prisoners had wished. Preceded by ‘Whenever I’m Gone’ (a re-recording from The Last Fourfathers), the album was badly promoted and the band, disillusioned with proceedings, split soon afterwards.

The band released their first album, A Taste of Pink, in 1982. Most of the songs were written by Graham Day. After releasing several self-financed records and spending a year with Big Beat Records, they made a final album, In From The Cold in 1986 for the Stiff Records label on their subsidiary label

"Countdown", run by Eddie Piller. After failing to find commercial success, the band split later in 1986. They have reformed for several live shows since then, and released a final one-off single in 1997. Bassist Allan Crockford produced the single Strawberries are Growing in My Garden (and It's Wintertime)[6] by fellow Medway band, The Dentists. He joined James Taylor in the James Taylor Quartet. Graham Day continues to perform in a number of different beat combos, such as the Solar Flares, and MBEs alongside Billy Childish and Wolf Howard.



The Prisoners – The Last Fourfathers
Label: Own-Up – OWN-UP3CD
Format:    CD, Album, Reissue
Country: UK
Released: 1994
Genre: Rock
Style: Garage Rock, Psychedelic Rock



01. Nobody Wants Your Love
(Words By, Music By – B. Childish)
02. Night Of The Nazgul
03. Thinking Of You (Broken Pieces)
04. I Am The Fisherman
05. Mrs. Fothergill
06. Take You For A Ride
07. The Drowning
08. F.O.P.
09. Whenever I'm Gone
10. Who's Sorry Now
11. Explosion On Uranus
12. I Drink The Ocean

Bass, Backing Vocals – Allan Crockford
Drums – Johnny Symons
Liner Notes – Ralph Traitor, Richard North
Music By – A. Crockford (tracks: 6, 8, 10, 12), G. Day, J. Taylor (tracks: 2, 3, 8, 10, 12), J. Symons (tracks: 8, 10, 12), R. Wilkins (tracks: 3, 8, 10, 12)
Organ, Piano – James Taylor
Producer – Russell Wilkins, The Prisoners
Vocals, Guitar, Clarinet, Bongos – Graham Day
Words By – G. Day (tracks: 3, 4, 6, 7, 9, 10, 12)

MP3 @ 320 Size: 83 MB
Flac  Size: 215 MB



The Prisoners – In From The Cold
Label:    Big Beat Records – CDWIKM 221
Format:    CD, Album, Remastered
Country: UK
Released: 2002
Genre: Rock
Style: Garage Rock



01. All You Gotta Do Is Say  (Written-By – Allan Crockford, Fay Hallam, Graham Day, Jamie Taylor, Johnny Symons, Russ Wilkins)  2:49
02. Come Closer  (Written-By – Graham Day)  3:43
03. The More That I Teach You  (Written-By – Graham Day)  3:19
04. Mourn My Health  (Written-By – Graham Day)  2:54
05. I Know How To Please You  (Written-By – Graham Day)  2:38
06. Deceiving Eye  (Written-By – Graham Day, Jamie Taylor)  3:02
07. In From The Cold  (Written-By – Jamie Taylor, Johnny Symons)  3:33
08. Wish The Rain  (Written-By – Graham Day, Jamie Taylor)  2:13
09. Be On Your Way  (Written-By – Graham Day)  2:11
10. Find And Seek  (Written-By – Graham Day)  2:47
11. Ain't No Tellin'  (Written-By – Jimi Hendrix) 1:45
12. Main Title Theme (The Lesser Evil)  (Written-By – Allan Crockford, Graham Day, Jamie Taylor, Johnny Symons, Russ Wilkins)  3:05
13. Whenever I'm Gone  (Written-By – Graham Day)  2:42
14. Promised Land  (Written-By – Graham Day, Jamie Taylor)  2:02
15. Gravedigger  (Written-By – Allan Crockford, Graham Day, Jamie Taylor, Johnny Symons, Russ Wilkins)  2:48
16. Pop Star Party  (Written-By – Allan Crockford, Graham Day, James Taylor, Johnny Symons)  2:53
17. Happiness For Once  (Written-By – Graham Day, James Taylor)  2:39

Bass, Vocals – Allan Crockford
Drums, Percussion – Johnny Symons
Engineer – Martin Giles, Richard Preston
Lead Vocals, Guitar, Flute – Graham Day
Mastered By – Nick Robbins
Organ, Piano, Mellotron, Harpsichord, Marimba, Organ [Wurlitzer], Vocals – Jamie Taylor
Producer – John Agnew, Russell Wilkins, Troy Tate

1-12 originally released as Countdown LP DOWN 2 (1986)
13-15 originally released on Countdown 12" Vain 4 (1986)
16-17 originally released on Hangman Hang 023 Up (1988)

MP3 @ 320 Size: 111 MB
Flac  Size: 313 MB

The Prisoners: Wisermiserdemelza & 7 on Urban Aspirines Here


  1. Yes i've known the Prisoners since the beginning. In addition of these i also like her first a tast of pink from 1982. I recently discovered cold through the book by Rijkeboer brits post punk sound & new wave. Later the pure garage punk appears to have been exchanged for their psychedelic sound - ala Small Faces. I also think the successors Prime Movers & Solarflares.
    Thank you Kostas for your fine taste in music.

  2. Apropo Rijkeboer that mean Netherland. I discovered 2 fine dutch bands here yesterday.
    Johan - you can take everything and
    The Secret Combination n - cirque.
    As long as you like this kind of music.

  3. The most underrated band EVER! Graham Day is a modern genius of garage/psychedelic/punk/freakbeat.