Legends: We've Got A Fuzzbox And We're Gonna Use It!
35 years ago, long before the term "Girl Power" became a thing, four young ladies from Birmingham decided to form a band. Consisting of vocalist Vix Perks, sisters Jo and Magz Dunne on guitar and keyboards/bass respectively and Tina O'Neill on drums, the marvellously named We've Got A Fuzzbox And We're Gonna Use It! was formed.
The band positioned themselves as a power-punk 4 piece and whilst deciding on a name, acquired a guitar distortion pedal. Magz proclaimed "we've got a fuzzbox and we're gonna use it!" and the name stuck,
Although the band never shortened their name, some lazy members of the music industry later shortened it to "Fuzzbox", presumably to save radio announcers a little time and the band set about recording their debut album "Bostin' Steve Austin" which was released in 1986. The album spawned several tracks, with "Love Is The Slug" breaking into the Top 40, peaking at number 31.
The band switched labels and in 1989 released their breakthrough album "Big Bang". This was a huge deviation from their previous punk sound, a far more contemporary dance-pop sound and one which was to have a big impression on me as a late teen! Singles Pink Sunshine, International Rescue, Self! and Walking On Thin Ice remain among my vinyl collection to this date. The track "Self" even featured Brian May of Queen fame playing an epic guitar solo, although the band were given strict instructions not to mention it.
In 1990, the band started working on a new album but following the release of the first single "Your Loss, My Gain" the band went their separate ways. Vix embarked on a solo career and the rest of the band left the music industry altogether.
In 2010, they reunited as a five-piece, without Tina on drums. They embarked on a huge tour and released a new single, covering M's "Pop Musik." There have been many cover versions of this song but Fuzzbox's version is definitely a favourite of mine.
Tragically, guitarist and founder member Jo Dunne was diagnosed with cancer and six weeks later in October 2012 she succumbed to the illness. She was 43.
The band reformed for a second time in 2015. The lineup now consisted of Vix, Magz and new members Megan Burke on guitar, Sarit Black on bass and Hannah Layhe on drums and this new lineup continues to date. A couple of singles further along, including "WGAF AWGUI" (work it out!) and we're bang up to date.
Today marks the release of a brand new single for Fuzzbox, a cover of the X-Ray Spex classic "I Can't Do Anything". I am delighted to report that, over 30 years later, Fuzzbox are sounding as good as ever. The new track forms part of a series of tracks from artists celebrating the music of X-Ray Spex frontwoman, Poly Styrene. "I Can't Do Anything" is pop, it's punk and at's 100% Fuzzbox... and I love it!