(This page is about the Creation independent record label. For the band of the same name, see Creation.)
Creation logo

Creation Records was a British independent record label headed by Alan McGee. Along with Dick Green and Joe Foster, McGee founded Creation in 1983. The name came from the 1960s band The Creation, whom McGee greatly admired. McGee, Green and Foster were also in the band Biff Bang Pow!, which was also the title of a Creation song. The label ceased operations in 1999, although it was revived at one point in 2011 for the release of a compilation album, 'Upside Down', spanning songs from the label.

The label focused on alternative rock, releasing many indie pop, indie rock, shoegazing and Britpop records, but also featured bands performing various other styles of rock, including post-punk, as well as some electronic, folk and experimental artists.

The dissolution of Creation Records in 1999 led to McGee and Foster forming Poptones. The label saw a return to the staunchly independent roots of Creation, and had most notably launched the career of The Hives in the UK.

(Read more at Wikipedia.)

Links To Peel

Upside Down- The Creation Records Story Trailer

Upside Down- The Creation Records Story Trailer

Creation was one of Britain's key indie record labels for over a decade from the mid-1980s, releasing a string of landmark records that Peel played heavily on his shows. At different times, the label's roster featured session regulars and Festive Fifty mainstays of the era from Jesus And Mary Chain, Primal Scream and My Bloody Valentine to House of Love, Teenage Fanclub, Ride and Super Furry Animals. After years of financial struggle and a cash injection from Sony, Creation hit the commercial jackpot in the mid-1990s with Oasis, who were less of a favourite with the DJ and his listeners.

Peel supported Creation from its inital releases,[1] after maverick Scottish label founder Alan McGee had made fleeting earlier appearances on his show as both a member of the Laughing Apple and a budding club promoter.[2] After Peel's death, McGee told The Times:

“John Peel played the first band I was in and the first release by Creation Records. Without John, Creation probably wouldn't have happened.”[3]

As noted by David Cavanagh, author of books on both Creation and the Peel show, the DJ's favourite early single on the label was “Do The Ghost” by the X-Men, but it was the subsequent release of 'Upside Down' by Jesus And Mary Chain in late 1984 that really put Creation on the map, despite the band swiftly moving on to Warners' subsidiary Blanco Y Negro (while still managed by McGee).[4]

Away from the indie rock template, Peel featured early 90s dance remixes of popular Creation artists such as Primal Scream and My Bloody Valentine, as well as dance releases on the label by less heralded outfits including Fluke, Hypnotone, J.B.C., Love Corporation and Sheer Taft. Love Corporation were one of several Creation projects involving Edward Ball, previously of Television Personalities and Teenage Filmstars, two Peel favourites of the late 1970s.

The DJ also played the company's 1994 release of an eponymous single by the 60s band who had originally inspired the label's name, marketed as 'Creation By Creation For Creation'.[1] In 1997, Peel worked his way through all 83 tracks of the Creation release 'A Wet Handle', the first album by Scottish session veteran Ivor Cutler in over a decade, at the rate of one track per show.

He also gave airtime to releases on Creation subsidiary label Rev-Ola, including vintage offbeat offerings by TV actors David McCallum (The Man from UNCLE), William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy (both Star Trek).

After the end of Creation, the DJ also played tracks by artists on the Poptones label formed by McGee, including the Hives.


Creation artists who recorded Peel sessions. List includes sessions when the artists were not on Creation.[5]

Festive Fifty

According to The Festive Fifty by Mark Whitby (1st edition, 2005, pg195), Creation had the eighth most Festive Fifty entries of any label in Peel's lifetime (with 35, behind Rough Trade, Factory, 4AD, Polydor, Virgin, CBS and Island), and the fifth highest number of separate tracks (33, behind Rough Trade, 4AD, Factory and Island).

The list below covers Festive Fifty entries on Creation; it does not include entries by Creation artists on other labels.[7]


(Plays by Peel of various artist (v/a) releases on Creation Records.)

(LP - Different For Domeheads)

(LP - Doing God's Work - A Creation Compilation)

(LP - Doing It For The Kids)



  1. Peel played the b-side of the first release on Creation, by the Legend, on 23 August 1983.
  2. In Good Night And Good Riddance, pg 313, David Cavanagh points out that on 12 October 1982 Peel read out a letter from McGee announcing the start of his Communication Club in Camden, but the writer hadn't included the date of the opening. Peel's only known play of the Laughing Apple was on 01 April 1981.
  3. Quoted by Mick Wall, John Peel, pg121.
  4. Cavanagh, pg 345, see 02 July 1984.
  5. Creation artists who did sessions in other guises include Bill Drummond (Big In Japan (1 session, 1979)); Clive Langer (Deaf School (3 sessions, 1976-78)); Glen Matlock (Rich Kids (2 sessions (1977-78), Jimmy Norton's Explosion, (1 session, 1979)); Kevin Rowland (Killjoys (1 session, 1977), Dexys Midnight Runners (1 session, 1980)).
  6. After the Boo Radleys split, Martin Carr of the band recorded a further session with his solo vehicle Brave Captain in 2000.
  7. Creation band Felt had the 1985 Festive Fifty #7 with 'Primitive Painters' while on Cherry Red. Creation artists who had Festive Fifty entries in other guises include Bill Drummond (KLF); Glen Matlock (Sex Pistols); Bob Mould (Husker Du); Kevin Rowland (Dexys Midnight Runners).