Formed way back in 1988, The Haywains, based near Bristol, played three-chord buzzy guitar indie-pop with bittersweet lyrics and sixties style melodies. Part of the 'twee' pop underground and the fanzine culture that held the scene together, The Haywains were familiar faces at Bristol's legendary Tropic Club and many of the 'Waaaaaah!' indie-pop nights around the UK.
The band's early gigs could be rather shambolic at times, but their refreshingly minimal approach fronted by singer Jeremy's jovial on-stage banter would define the very ethic of their lo-fi punk-pop roots. Bristol rapidly became one of the UK's most productive areas on the 'indie pop' scene of the late '80's, and The Haywains were simply one of many bands on a vibrant pop scene that the city enjoyed during that now legendary 'C86' era.
The Haywains began their recording career with the 'Surfin' Trowbridge EP' a flexi-disc issued with a pop fanzine called 'Woosh!' in 1988. The following year, the band's first single 'Fisherman's Friend' was released on the band's own 'Emily's Shop' label and received some all-important exposure by John Peel. The band went on to release a string of somewhat elusive 7" singles for small independent labels in Europe and the USA, ultimately signing to Vinyl Japan in 1991. The band recorded two albums for the label, 'Never Mind Manchester, Here's The Haywains' and the follow-up 'Desperately Seeking Something'. Those hard-to-find early singles were also re-released on a compilation CD 'Get Happy With The Haywains' by Vinyl Japan in 1992. Another seven-inch single 'Why Do I Get The Feeling Your Mother Hates Me?' was released in Spain by Elefant Records in 1995. It would be their last.
There comes a time when you just get too old for singing songs about teenage angst, and The Haywains officially disbanded after announcing a farewell hometown gig in the summer of 1996. A brief reunion took place in 2002 showing that the boys, and girl, could still get away with playing pop music five years after their split. The former band members still insist that the recipe behind their irresistible charm was in doing it just for fun. Let's hope that spirit lives on.
The Haywains on myspace