Cardiacs are an English rock band formed in 1977, originally as Cardiac Arrest, led by Tim Smith. Noted for their complex, varied and intense compositional style and for their eccentric, theatrical stage shows, they have been hailed as an influence by bands as diverse as Napalm Death, Blur, Faith No More and Radiohead.
Cardiacs have released eight studio albums plus a number of live albums, compilation albums and singles between 1980 and 2007, and are best known for the 1988 minor hit single "Is This the Life?" They are also noted for attracting strongly diverse responses: they have remained one of Britain's leading cult rock bands during their four-decade-spanning career, but have also attracted virulent critical attack (including a lengthy editorial ban from the British music magazine New Musical Express).
The band has been on indefinite (and possibly permanent) hiatus following the 2008 hospitalisation of Tim Smith, after a heart attack which subsequently led him to develop the rare neurological disorder dystonia. Smith continued to receive medical treatment and rehabilitation, before his death in July 2020.
Links to Peel
Peel played the band's debut single, when they were originally called Cardiac Arrest in 1979, but then afterwards didn't seem to play much material or if any from the group until 1999, when he played a couple of tracks from them on a joint single with Camp Blackfoot.
- Cardiac Arrest
- 13 November 1979: A Bus For A Bus On The Bus (7") Tortch
- 12 October 1999: 'Sleep All Eyes Open (CDS-Cardiacs Meet Camp Blackfoot)' (Org)
- 21 October 1999 (Radio Eins): 'Dirty Boy (split CDS with Camp Blackfoot-Cardiacs Meet Camp Blackfoot)' (Org)
- 06 July 2000 (Radio Eins): 'Dirty Boy (split CDS with Camp Blackfoot-Cardiacs Meet Camp Blackfoot)' (Org)
- Sea Nymphs: Cardiacs side project who recorded a Peel session.