In 1978 forming a punk band and expecting to be taken seriously was not on the list headed “Good Ideas” but that didn’t deter four young punks from deciding to lower the tone of the neighbourhood and deciding to call themselves The Epileptics after a suggestion by one of their mothers.
Crass played in Bishop’s Stortford in August 1978 and the two bands got talking. A few weeks later The Epileptics had a gig with Crass at The Basement in Covent Garden. Only five people turned up during the soundcheck, then left. The Epileptics played their set to Crass followed by Crass playing their set to The Epileptics. An alliance had been formed that would last for many years!
Complaints of ‘ill-conceited jocularity’ from The British Epilepsy Association resulted in a name change to Epi-x, then changed to The Licks under pressure from Stortbeat who released the band’s debut ‘1970s’ single, much played by John Peel.
More releases and national acclaim followed, all too much for the local punks to handle so a backlash started and in 1979 the last few gigs ended in slanging matches.
In early 1980 the nucleus of The Epileptics re-emerged as Flux Of Pink Indians, but that’s another story…
‘Smash Guitar Solos’ is a 500 only limited edition vinyl LP that compiles their two highly collectable singles: ‘1970s’ and ‘Last Bus To Debden’ and an unreleased studio session from March 1979.