Friday, May 1, 2009

The Martians - Discography

Here is the download: The Martians Complete Recordings

1-2: from the "Elvis/Bad Luck" single
3-4: from the split 7" with Harvey Milk
5-7: from the Re-Fuel compilation
8-17: from the demo tape
18-21: from the two Chunklet/Lunchbox/Reservation singles
22-31: from the "Low Budget Stunt King" album

I have broken the recordings into two parts based on who was playing drums in the band at the time – part one consists of all the songs recorded while Jerry Fuchs was the drummer, part two contains all of the songs recorded with Kyle Spence on drums (i.e. early Martians vs. late Martians). Henry Owings has also sent me 10 (TEN!) live Martians shows, which I have included here.

Except for Jerry, I didn’t know any of the guys in the Martians at all, so my perspective and history of the band will be incomplete and more or less wrong in several spots. Hopefully some of you can comment and fill in some of the gaps/corrections. It all started in 1991-1992 when East Cobb resident (and employee of the Merchant's Walk Chuck E. Cheese) Jerry Fuchs got together with Keith and Hugh to form The Martians. They recorded a 10 song demo tape and a 2 song single in Jon Colquitt's basement, that were subsequently put out by Self Rising Records in Athens. They soon after officially became an Athens band, and I can remember the posters for the Elvis/Bad Luck single posted all around town during the Fall of 1993. I saw them open for Polvo at the Atomic Music Hall, and several other shows as well. In 1994, after the release of the Re-Fuel compilation and a split 7" with Harvey Milk, Jerry left the band and moved to New York to play in Vineland with John Fine from Bitch Magnet.

He was immediately replaced by Kyle Spence, who had just left Fiddlehead and I believe their first official show as The Martians with Kyle on drums (or at least the first one I saw) was opening for Rodan at the 40 Watt Club in July of 1994. However, Henry mentioned (and has provided the recording of) a secret show they did before the Rodan show under the name "Polyestrogen", so I guess that was their first official show post-Jerry. As a drummer, I am personally more a fan of Jerry's syncopated style, but Kyle brought a heaviness to the band (although still postpunk and nothing like the heaviness that would come later), and recorded their best songs with him at the kit. With Kyle they went into the studio and recorded/released 4 songs on two singles that were put out by Chunklet, Reservation and Lunchbox records. This always confused me, as Steve Wishart was putting out records under the Lunchbox name by then, but had nothing to do with these singles. Doug Ahern was involved in these records, however, and he was an initial participant in the Lunchbox label during The View era.

In January of 1995, they made the trip to Chicago and recorded a full length with Steve Albini in hopes of securing a spot on Touch and Go, but it never came to fruition and the album instead appeared on Allied Recordings. I actually never saw this album in a record store in Atlanta, I bought it in the used bin at Lou's Records in San Diego and had to look at the inside cover to make sure it was the same Martians from Athens. It must have been one of the last Allied releases, as they folded as a label soon after this. In the Spring of 1995, they started slowing down their songs and getting heavier, which segued Kyle Spence into Harvey Milk and the disolution of The Martians. Kyle played in Harvey Milk for several years, then joined The Tom Collins with David Barbe and launched his professional drummer career from there. Jerry Fuchs played in Vineland for a bit, then started Turing Machine with the guys in Pitchblende, and later joined Maserati and !!!, among other projects. Keith the bassplayer was one of the owners of Jittery Joe's in Athens, but I remember him selling off his portion and opening a coffee shop on Prince, but I believe that was short lived. I am not sure of the disposition of Hugh the guitarist, but Henry tells me he lives in Decatur somewhere, hopefully playing one of his great patented overdriven scratchy guitar lines.

Update: Michael Keenan (Hawks, Airoes, Wheeljack, Mascara Aesthetic, Electrosleep International) had some information to share from their early days in Cobb County - I met these guys back in the Somber reptile days when my first band Monster Box was just starting out (we recorded our first demo in Keith's base parents basement). the tape that you posted has a funny story behind it. Hugh and Keith thought it would be fun to make a tape and let their friends pick the sounds for the first 7in. jerry and I printed these 7in's in my freshman graphic design class. God just seeing it again makes me remember playing with these fools in Atlanta, Athens and Savannah way back when. Damn they were so fucking great. There's a VHS of them playing at the Walton high School Prep rally. I'll have to ask my friend Tom (who was in Bughummer) if he can dig it up and code it for you. So great to listen to these songs they were such a huge influence on me growing up.

Here is the rest of the artwork from the "Elvis/Bad Luck" single - they were really into amputation artwork at the time:

Here is the artwork from the demo tape - thanks Kip!

Here is their band page in the Re-Fuel compilation:

Here is the artwork from the Chunklet/Reservation/Lunchbox singles:

Here is the artwork from the "Low Budget Stunt King" album:

L to R: Hugh, Keith, Kyle. Stay tuned for live stuff.


  1. First off, I gotta thank you for putting all this up. I always thought the Martians were never given their full due. Watching Jerry perform with them was always a treat. Kyle was just a different (yet equally talented) drummer. My interest waned, but the recordings are still great.

    For the record, Kyle didn't LEAVE Fiddlehead as much as the band broke up. Would you say that's accurate?

    The show where The Martians opened for Polvo is included in the ten gigs I sent you, James. Hard to believe I actually only recorded every other show they did, but that's how broke/cheap I was at the time......

  2. was dave barbe in the tom collins? i am looking at the first tom collins cd right now (don't ask me why it's sitting on my desk, but it just so happens to be) and they credit the band as fran capitanelli, david chase, and dan dixon, but it was recorded by dave barbe. not that important, but just an observation.

    as to the jerry fuchs vs. kyle spence debate:
    after listening to all this stuff back to back, i have to go with kyle. jerry is a great drummer, no doubt, but his style simply services this music, not really propelling it forward. kyle, on the other hand has such a swing when he plays, that he takes these math rock songs and gives them new life. i think he's the best drummer of our "scene" whatever you make of that. granted, as you pointed out the other day james, kyle had the better songs to work with, but i still think his drummer has more personality and adds a certain groove to the start/stop dynamics they were playing.

    my two cents anyway.

    regardless, the martians were pretty good, maybe not great, but better than i remembered them being. great post.

  3. this a fantastic post. i had LBSK in highschool and it freaked us all out. totally underrated and that is unconscionable. thanks!

  4. i still own my "cult commander" t-shirt. one fo the best band tees ever.

  5. james, is that you in the naked raygun shirt in the yah-mos picture?

  6. excellent. i spent many a late nights with these fellas at the merchants walk dunkin donuts on johnson's ferry. i think that may be where we all "learned to drink coffee".

  7. Gray-I'm a postulate some theorems and whathaveyou on that ass: David Barbe's studio is Chase Park Transduction, yes? Perhaps he was using a nom de plume for this recording. You know...for kicks. Or some heavy legal shit. Athens is a cutthroat town, y'know.

  8. David Barbe was originally in the Tom Collins as the bassplayer, but was probably out by the time they recorded their first album. I'll have to post that sometime down the road.

    I am wearing the Naked Raygun shirt in the Yah Mos picture. I think Saucemaster took the photo.

  9. "Colquitt" was code for Andy Baker's 8track studio at his parents house in the ATL burbs, if I remember correctly. Pool Hall was the first thing recorded there and I remember all the Martians guys being around at some point so maybe it was at one of their houses. Does anybody else remember? It was a long time ago.

    It was just cutesyness to have an imaginary engineer/producer. We went along.

  10. hey y'all, love the site.

    i joined the mediafire hoping you've got some better transfers than i do...
    since you've got "h" on line, you have the best resource you can get. ballard might be able to fill in some gaps too...

    jerry made the cult commander shirt in high school, still one of the best.

    colquitt... i don't think andy ever lived in atlanta. the self rising address is where andy, joe rowe and i lived back then. check the martins refuel page again, and the jonestones page on myspace. work the clues...

    i still have martians singles, jonestones singles, and fuel and refuel discs if interested.


  11. As far as the two singles that were put out partially under the Lunchbox name, James you are correct that I had nothing to do with them even though I was running Lunchbox fully at that time. Doug just decided to put the Lunchbox name on there on his own and never told me. I didn't even know until I saw the 7"s in the store one day. I was initially pissed off about it and couldn't understand why he would do that. But since I liked the Martians I got over it and figured it could only help the label. I had forgotten about that whole incident until this post.

  12. Thanks very much for this. I met the Martians while i was working in a record store in Santiago de Chile through the conecction David Barbe/Steve Albini. I bought the "Low Budget...." by some mailorder that we used at that time, really cheap. I had to left all my physical records in Chile (I live in Spain now) and i was looking for this record but it was impossible to get. I must add that i'm looking for the 2 Buzz Hungry albums that i also left in Southamerica so if someday you could post them here i would love you forever!
    Thanks again, a big hug!


  13. Hi Katafu - thanks for the comment! I have to dig the Buzz Hungry LPs up, but I will be posting a Mercyland LP soon (David Barbe's previous band before Buzz Hungry). Stay posted.

  14. Hello...

    I've just learned of the terribly sad and unfortunate passing of Jerry Fuchs this week, and found this post in a resulting search.

    Thank you for posting this material. I played drums (sort of) with Keith in his first band in the mid/late 80s, and later was a co-worker of Hugh's for a little over a year during the time he, Keith, and Jerry were recording the demo tape material. I didn't know Jerry personally, but was absolutely blown away by what he was doing even then, and enjoyed seeing that incarnation of the Martians play live on several occasions. One memorable gig was their opener for The Jesus Lizard at the Masquerade. It was brilliant.

    Like most here, I agree The Martians got by with a fraction of the attention they deserved.

    Through a series of unfortunate events (including the recent GA floods), I've lost most of the small amount of Martians material I did have, and was hoping I might find some replacements here (?). I'll have a look around and see what you have here.

    In any case, from one who was there at the beginning, a HUGE "THANK YOU!" from me for acknowledging the band and keeping their memory alive for old and new fans.

    I know Jerry and the guys would appreciate it.

    R.I.P., Jerry. You were a genius.

  15. HA! Just read Michael's update piece...Hugh also gave us (co-workers) rough copies of the demo tape so we could vote on the songs that would make the final pressing. Of course I was a day late getting my choices in, but at least they had the distinction of having the pharmacist at Revco Drugs having a vote on which songs to release! LOL!

  16. Could anyone put this up as a single .zip file download? It would be appreciated like crazy!

  17. Oops, sorry. I was overlooking the two big files at the very top of the page. Duh. Carry on!

  18. Can anyone re-upload the two mediafire files posted here? I just discovered this posting and upon clicking the links, I found that they are no longer downloadable.

  19. Hey Anonymous - I just downloaded Part 1 to my computer just to be sure. It seems to be working. Check the following Mediafire link and let me know if you have any trouble:


  20. I saw the Martians play in Savannah in March of '97 and was blown away. I didn't know anything about the band and randomly walked into the bar they were playing. They were great and I bought both the 7" on the spot. Never heard them again but I still vividly remember how much I liked their sound. I'm downloading the files to see if they still sound as good to me ( I no longer own the 7" after a split with the woman who was with me at the time)

  21. Hey Anonymous - I hope you enjoy all the great stuff they did. There is so much more than a 7" there, but it was a shame it wasn't better distributed.

  22. tanx tanx tanx tanx, a million times tanx for this martians recordings. I ve been looking for any recording for , like 10 years now. (i have low budget.. i bought it in a record store in Novi Sad, Serbia in 1997, 1998 cant remember..)

    So .. tanx tanx tanx tanx tanx... and greetings from serbia!

  23. what hapened with the video in live concert?