The TUNNELRUNNERS
Neath / Cardiff, Wales

 

Madoc Roberts - Vocals & Guitar Graham Jones - Guitar & Vocals
Jeff Burton - Drums
(There was no bass guitar in the band, Graham Jones played his ordinary guitar through a bass amp and speaker for a fuller
but fuzzier sound (he also sings on 'I Hate Blue Peter')

 

      

   

"Plastic Land" EP

Plastic Land / Forever Crying at Love Songs

Average / Words / I Can You Can.

Catalogue Number - SI 4282

Label - Sonic International Records

Year Of Release - 1981

Quantity Pressed - 200

   

All copies came with a double sided lyric sheet.

 

Madoc Roberts Graham Jones Jeff Burton

 

The Tunnelrunners were another great example of what was happening in the late 70s. The Punk attitude of get up and go and form your own band was rife throughout the UK, Some of these bands were out standing and sadly some fell short BUT they were up there and giving it a go. The Tunnelrunners were one of those long lost great bands and lived by the Punk ethics.

Read Steve Mitchell's of Low Down kids take on them...

Main-man Madoc was never a real feature of the local scene, and only every now and again would he be spotted, with his long shaggy non-punk locks and mostly sporting some kind of brightly coloured military tunic, fronting The Tunnelrunners in some God-forsaken you-take-your-life-in-your-hands gig like the 'Admiral Benbow Pub' out on Fabian Way. You couldn't just go and see The Tunnelrunners: you had to be lucky, to be in the right place at the right time.

With the legend of the Tunnelrunners' glories grown to almost mythic proportions, the group was eventually nailed down in one place long enough to record a ten-song everything-live session for the local radio station (with Andrew Reader, of Swansea's fabulous powerpoppers The DC10s as 'producer'/cheerleader), and in January 1981 five tracks from the session were released as the "Plastic Land" EP. The group played one final Swansea gig, to show willing, and then disappeared back to the up-England-way college-lives that had effectively finished the group that past autumn.

(A year or so later, with the group un-contactable, the rest of the radio session was transformed into the "100 MPH" EP, though not a single copy of this has surfaced in over 20 years ... only 100 pressed, perhaps 15 sold, the rest trashed by mistake in the 80s.... so not surprising. All together: oops!).

Madoc's guitar-solos (here on "Plastic Land", and on "Forever Crying At Love Songs", another track on this EP) were heaven-sent. The tunes were top. They had fun. Has there ever been a more joyous pop group?

 

Jeff Burton Madoc Roberts Graham Jones

 

????? Graham Jones Madoc Roberts
Live at "Circles", Swansea 1978.

'Circles' was THE venue in Swansea, all the really big punk bands played there. Legend has it that the Sex Pistols played in 'Circles' on September 22nd 1976. It had a sticky floor and I think a dead body was found there once. These photos are from our first ever gig which was a bit of a disaster. Our drummer pulled out at the last minute but someone stood in on the night (punk spirit etc). The sound system put all the vocals on one side of the room and the guitars on the other. By the end of our set an older local man had given up booing and was begging us to get off stage.... PUNK ROCK?

???? Graham Jones Madoc Roberts
Live at "Circles"

 

Jeff Burton Graham Jones Madoc Roberts
Live at "Heathcliffe", Swansea 1978.

'The Heathcliffe' was a venue in Swansea that hosted live music and had strippers, I think though not on the same night. The year would be 1978 I think.It was our second gig and we were meant to go on first but when nobody turned up the other bands pulled rank and went on first leaving us to go on last. By the time we came on the place had filled up (Gary Glitter was playing in town and he had finished early, it comes to something of a surprise that we shared the same audience!) I finished the gig with one string left on my guitar. We got rave reviews and went on from strength to strength.

Madoc Roberts

 

Watch out for the bands 10 track release coming on the 'Only Fit For The Bin' label soon.

 

 

 

  Thanks to Madoc Roberts

 

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