‘Hi-Fi, Lo-Fi, No-Fi’ – the sound of Wormhole / The Wormholes. For this release on Allchival we fast forward to the 90s – 1991 to start with, when Metal, Hard Rock, Punk and a love of Fugazi brought the Carroll brother s – Dave & Anto – together with Graham Blackmore as Wormhole. 18 tracks spanning their three LPs, with the full permission of the labels involved – the revered Dead Elvis, the American based Chunkin’ Bronchii’ and Lo Recordings – and remastered by one of their original collaborators and producer of their debut Marc Carolan.
All three were residents of Ringsend to the south of Dublin’s city centre. Graham, the youngest of the three, was already a gifted guitarist/singer, with Dave a natural self taught drummer/singer and Anto locking bass to his brother’s beat. Early gigs had a special chemistry that set them apart from the rest of Dublin’s nascent indie rock scene of the time.
Working class lads in it for the long haul they soon attracted the attention of Eamonn Crudden who became their manager and tireless supporter. He helped set up a label called Dead Elvis which would release their debut album “Chicks Dig Scars” in May ’94 – the labels first release. Selling out its run of 500 copies alongside some low budget grainy videos, also directed by Crudden, which had heavy rotation on Irelands first late night, left of centre music video show Donal Dineen’s “No Disco”.
There was a flurry of attention from UK labels and the group ended up signing with Roadrunner records. Known primarily for metal, the label was trying to branch into other areas but for a host of reasons it never quite worked out – the departure of a supportive A&R, the rise of English centric Britpop – and the mixed bag of reviews and radio play wasn’t enough to generate the sales necessary to keep the labels interest . Although they got to support the Fall on a UK tour and the label funded a demo session for the next album – Parijuana – they were let go in 1995.
Far from splitting up, it gave them a second wind and willing collaborators were still available with Stano taking the boards for their second album “Scorpio: The Album”. Released in 1997 on an imprint set up especially for them Chunkin’ Bronchii’ it showcased a heavier darker sound. It found a small audience leading to a collaborative LP with Welsh producer Richard Thomas via Jon Ty’s Lo Recordings. “Seven Point Plan To Destroy Astrology “ released in 1998 followed by a remix 12 the pick of which, a collaboration with Dublin’s Decal titled “Free The Tones” , is featured here.
Crudden had not given up on the Parijuana demos from 95 which finally saw the light of day on a reactivated Dead Elvis in ’99 with the subtitle “4 Years in Captivity”. Released to little fanfare outside their fanbase by now the group had run its course with real life interfering and Graham departing. Anto and Dave drafted in Fergus Cullen for the free form E+S=B (Electronic (sometimes European) Senoria Band) and continued to gig in Dublin. In 2019 The Wormholes were back in the studio with Stano when Dave suffered a stroke and was diagnosed with Stage Four Cancer. He died three months later.