Frantic Elevators
Frantic Elevators
were a punk band best known for being the jumping-off point for a pre-Simply Red Mick Hucknall. Formed in 1976 after the band met each other at a Sex Pistols gig, the group consisted of vocalist Mick Hucknall, drummer Kevin Williams, guitarist Neil Smith, and bassist Brian Turner. The band's first single, Voice in the Dark, was released in June of 1979 by TJM records. They hopped over to Eric's Records, the label affiliated with the Liverpool club of the same name, for the You Know What You Told Me single, which was released near the end of 1980. A trio of radio sessions for the BBC followed in 1981, along with their third single, Searching for the Only. After that, an extended recording hiatus ensued, predating what would become their final single, 1982's Holding Back the Years (No Waiting). Just less than four years later, Hucknall re-recorded the song with Simply Red, and it became an international smash.

Links To Peel

Peel heard the band through TJM records and on one show from 12 June 1979, he played three tracks from their single Voice In The Dark. However after the band split, Mick Hucknall formed Simply Red, who later became successful with hits like Holding Back The Years, If You Don't Know Me By Now and Fairground, which became the band's most successful single, reaching number one in the UK Singles Chart in 1995. Peel despised Mick Hucknall after buying him a beer once which a week later Hucknall criticised him in the Melody Maker, which Peel mentioned on his 17 November 1990 (BFBS) show. Since then, Peel made disparaging comments about Hucknall and his band:

"Listen, if I was running the place and somebody offered me a tape by Simply Red, I'd make sure that a term of imprisonment resulted." [1].

"The response to the earlier programmes of these has been fantastic, as you can imagine. Well, to be honest with you, there's been no response at all, although somebody did say to me, "There were too many unfamiliar names in those programmes, you know." There's not a lot of point in me playing you, say, "Here's another track from Simply Red." You deserve better than that: everybody deserves better than that." [2]

The only time their music intruded on his shows was on 30 October 1993, when he played 20 seconds or so of Simply Red's Thrill Me before interrupting it with the comment, ‘Do me a favour!’ and proceeded with a Fall song.

However, Hucknall put some of his vast earnings from Simply Red into the reggae reissue label Blood & Fire, and Peel played releases on this label (often of music he had been one of the few DJs to champion originally) on occasions, for example a Tapper Zukie reissue on 06 October 1995.


The session track 'Hunchback Of Notre Dame' is available on Various ‎– Manchester, So Much To Answer For (The Peel Sessions)(CD, 1990, Strange Fruit)

1. Recorded: 1981-02-25. Broadcast: 03 March 1981. Repeated: 18 March 1981, 04 August 1981

  • Ding Dong / Searching For The Only One / Hunchback Of Notre Dame / I Am The Man / Production Prevention

2. Recorded: 1981-09-19. Broadcast: 30 September 1981. Repeated: 26 October 1981

  • And I Don't Care (Nobody Stays Here) / After Hanging Around / What To Do? / I'm Not To See Her / Ice Cream And Wafers

Other Shows Played

Frantic Elevators Voice In The Dark

Frantic Elevators Voice In The Dark




External Links

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.