From: Q Magazine #128

Leeds was a hotbed of punkish fervour, with the Mekons rivalling the Gang of Four. The landmark debut single, Never Been In A Riot, added new meaning to the term "shambolic anthem," though after several line-ups, the musical direction changed in the mid 80s to a sodden, melancholic folk and C&W weave, every bit as sharply defined as the Light Brigade charge of old. The band members have been through around 30 members to date, with several definitive line-ups, the longest lasting and most successful being the current troupe. But with a profile somewhat beneath the hold-the-front-page level, we ask, where are the Mekons now?

Tom Greenhalgh (guitar): A Mekon from the start. "I'm really not interested in participating in a Where Are They Now piece. We had an album out this year and just completed a two-month tour of the States." Too true, the album being their fourteenth, the spirited, noisy Return From Memphis, but the fact that three of the band now live in America, while they have a loose arrangement with Chicago's Quarterstick label (having freed themselves of a deal with A&M), means that their UK profile has dipped. Hence Where Are They Now? "Well, it's a real piss-off to be thought of in this way. It's a wind-up."

Sarah Corina (violin) (sic): Signed up in 1991. Is Greenhalgh's domestic partner, so it's probably safe to assume she feels much the same way.

Sally Timms (vocal): A full-timer member since the late 80s. Currently lives in New York. Working on her second solo album.

Steve Goulding (drums): The ex-Graham Parker & The Rumour drummer and master sessioneer moved from Wimbleton to Chicago after meeting his present wife. Decided to leave the Mekons "because I'd had enough of being in bands." Worked for record distributors Cargo, "invoicing and warehouse work. It was my first job for 20 years. It was nice to get up in the morning and know what you were going to do." Left after three years to join eclectic US combo Poi Dog Pondering. Drummed on the Mekons recent tour. Also plays in Jon Langford's part-time band. Continbuted reviews to New Hi-Fi-Sound and Q in the late 80s. Stopped when he moved to the U.S. "I don't miss London, though it could be 50 degrees below zero in the winter here. Chicago's great, the apartment's great, and I'm warm in bed right now."

Jon Langford (vocals/guitar): Like Goulding,moved to Chicago after meeting his present wife in 1991. Acknowledges that the Mekons have kept a low UK profile "but we've done more work this year than ever before, with two albums and a tour. We were more visible on a major label but unhappier. The new album is about getting free of that situation." His country-oriented band has just released an album in Germany, titled Jon Langford and the Pine Valley Cosmonauts Explore the Dark And Lonely World Of Johnny Cash: "We started as a Cash covers band but it's broadened out since." Has found an even more important vocation as a painter, with three exhibitions in 1993. "The paintings are all figurative, and usually of old country singers, but with text all over them, chopped up and rubbed on the floor. So year, I guess I paint as I sing. And amazingly I sell them." Contributed reviews to Q under the nom de plume Charlie Dick -- "It was the name of Patsy Cline's husband. I thought it was funny, in a schoolboy sort of way" -- until heading Stateside.

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