The Cribs are an English 4-piece indie rock band from Wakefield, West Yorkshire. The band consist of twins Gary and Ryan Jarman and their younger brother Ross Jarman. Recently they have been joined by ex-The Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr who has been made a formal member of the group since 2008. The band, who first became active on the concert circuit in 2002, were initially tied to other like-minded UK bands of that time, most notably The Libertines, by a British music press that were looking for a 'British rearguard' to the wave of popular US indie rock bands of the time. In 2008, Q magazine described the band as "The biggest cult band in the UK".
The band have released four albums on the Wichita label - self titled debut The Cribs in 2004, The New Fellas in 2005, Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever in 2007 and Ignore The Ignorant in 2009. Known for their staunchly purist approach to recording, the band have often been labeled as 'Lo-Fi'. Significantly, their debut album was recorded in 7 days at London's Toe Rag Studio, onto 8-track. Toe Rag Studio is known for its vintage set up which is as authentic to an original 1960s studio as is possible in the modern day. Parts of this record were taken from the original sessions the band recorded with Chicago based avant-garde musician Bobby Conn.
The New Fellas, the band's second album release, was recorded with Edwyn Collins, the singer/songwriter and guitarist from Glasgow's influential Orange Juice in London at his own studio. Again, a comparatively unpolished record sonically, as both the producer Collins and the band themselves were achieving sounds similar to those heard on the Orange Juice records. This was, however, the intention and the reason the band and producer were put together.
Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever saw the band finally take steps to progress forth from their 'Lo-Fi' roots being recorded in Canada with Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand as producer. The album was mixed by Andy Wallace (Nirvana, Foo Fighters). The album was released on 21 May 2007 and was preceded by a single, Men's Needs, on 7 May, which reached #17.
Currently, the bands last 7 chart-elligible single releases have charted inside the UK Top 40.
Their song "Martell" from The New Fellas release was featured in the Canadian Telus Commercial, a series of commercials known for consistently featuring less mainstream yet iconic music ranging from Daft Punk to Supergrass.
The band appeared on Later with Jools Holland in May 2007, prior to the release of Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever, where they played the songs Men's Needs, Our Bovine Public and I'm a Realist. Men's Needs is the bands biggest hit to date, reaching number 17 in the UK charts. The track has also picked up many accolades, including being named 3rd best track of 2007 by NME, Track of the Year 2007 by the Metro paper and finishing in the 100 best tracks in Rolling Stone magazine in the USA.
In November 2007, The Cribs were named as the headlining act of the 2008 NME Awards Tour. They were nominated for four NME awards; Best British Band, Best Live Act, Best Track ("Men's Needs") and Hero Of The Year (Ryan Jarman), but won none of these awards.
The new album was announced in June 2009, the title being "Ignore The Ignorant", with a release date of 7th September. It will be preceded by first single "Cheat On Me" on 31st August.
Known for their raucous, unpredictable live shows the band have built-up a fanatical following due to a heavy touring schedule since the release of the first record. Their DIY ethic also led to them touring independently, when they were supposed to be off the road writing. Although this contributed to the bands success, and much larger venues, the band have always claimed to be more at home doing things in that way. On their first tour back after recording the third record in early 2007 the band returned to their roots and held some gigs in very small, intimate venues, including a show in their hometown at the Wakefield Escobar and another at the Brudenell Social Club in Leeds (a venue they used to play at when they first started out). In June, they returned to Leeds at the climax of their full-size UK tour with two consecutive sold out nights at the University Refectory (the first band to do this since Ian Dury and the Blockheads 30 years ago). They subsequently came back and accomplished the same feat in 2008, after the show being presented with an award by the University for being the first band in its history to have '2 consecutive years of 2 consecutive nights of sell-out shows at Leeds University Refectory'. In 2007 the band spoke out against the mainstreaming of Indie in the NME.
In 2008, The Cribs headlined the Radio1/NME stage at the Leeds Festival, and the Reading Festival. The Cribs, along with The Subways are also the only bands in the festivals history to progress through all the festivals stages in consecutive years, Carling Stage (2004), Radio1/NME Stage (2005), Main Stage (2006) - though The Cribs would trump them due to a performance they made on the Comedy Stage in 2002 and a headlining set on the Radio1/NME Stage in 2008.
On 8 December 2008, NME announced that the band would be playing a short UK tour to promote their latest album, due to be recorded shortly after. The tour visits a number of small intimate venues, including The Ritz in Manchester, London's Heaven, the ABC in Glasgow and St George's Hall in Bradford.
The band have announced a UK tour to support the new album. It runs from 24 September 2009 to 15 October 2009 and takes in 14 venues. Afterwards, they have dates planned in Japan, New York, Los Angeles, and Europe (supporting Franz Ferdinand in the latter) before another four UK gigs in December. More U.S. dates are pending.
In 2007 Lee Ranaldo from Sonic Youth collaborated with the band on their third album. The track "Be Safe" is a Ranaldo spoken word piece performed by the artist, and backed with The Cribs' music. They have a history of collaborations with artists such as Edwyn Collins (Orange Juice), Jon Slade (Huggy Bear, Comet Gain), Bobby Conn (Bobby Conn and The Glass Gypsies), Bernard Butler (Suede, McAlmont and Butler), Joe Plummer (Modest Mouse), the aforementioned Lee Ranaldo (Sonic Youth) and Alex Kapranos (Franz Ferdinand). The band are currently collaborating with Johnny Marr (The Smiths) who has recently confirmed himself as a full time member of the band.
- The Cribs (2004) Wichita
- The New Fellas (2005) UK #78 Wichita
- Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever (2007) UK #13 Wichita (Silver disc)
- Ignore the Ignorant (September 2009)Wichita UK #8
Showing UK chart positions
- "Jen Schande Split Single" (2003) Squirrel Number 3
- "Baby Don't Sweat" (2003) The Cribs'
- "You Were Always the One" (2004) The Cribs UK #66
- "What About Me" (2004) The Cribs UK #75
- "Hey Scenesters!" (2005) The New Fellas UK #27
- "Mirror Kissers" (2005) The New Fellas UK #27
- "Martell" (2005) The New Fellas UK #39
- "You're Gonna Lose Us" (2005) Non-album UK #30
- "Men's Needs" (2007) Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever UK #17
- "Moving Pictures" (2007) Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever UK #38
- "Don't You Wanna Be Relevant? / Our Bovine Public" (2007) Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever
- "I'm a Realist" (2008) Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever (none chart eligible release)
- "Cheat On Me" (2009) UK #80
The Wakefield band are known for writing and releasing many non-album tracks for b-sides or stand alone singles, like "You're Gonna Lose Us" (2006) and "Don't You Wanna Be Relevant?" (2007).
- "You're Gonna Lose Us"
- "Don't You Wanna Be Relevant?"
- "On The Floor"
- "Death To the Dead Bodies"
- "Feelin' It!"
- "I Gotta Go To LA"
- "Song From Practice 1"
- "Happy's Just a State Of Mind And A State Of Mind Is Just Electrical Impulses"
- "It Happened So Fast"
- "North Of England"
- "Im Still Blaming You"
- "Saturday Night Facts Of Life"
- "To Jackson"
- "I Was Her Man But I Done Her Wrong"
- "Advice From A Roving Artist"
- "Kind Words From The Broken Hearted"
- "Fairer Sex"
- "My Adolescent Dreams"
- "Run A Mile"
- "Get Yr Hands Out Of My Grave"
- "Bastards Of Young"
- "Is Anybody There?"
- "Curse This English Rain"
- "So Hot Now"
- Live At The Brudenell Social Club (15 December 2008), which includes an intimate live version of every Cribs song released to date.
Biography from Wikipedia