Pathway Studios

6 Sep

Mobile phone pics 2015 319
Pathway Studio

Excerpt from Be Stiff: The Stiff Records Story

Pathway had emerged from the embers of Fire, the Crazy World of Arthur Brown’s smouldering hit, which blazed away at the number one spot of the UK chart in August 1968. Mike Finesilver and Peter Ker helped write the red-hot hit and with the royalties they set up a studio in 2a Grosvenor Avenue, in Islington. Dave Robinson had first used it when he burned out one of the heads on his tape machine at the nearby Hope & Anchor, making it an obvious choice for the label‘s first recording session. Accessed via an alleyway between an end-terrace house and a garage, it was a cramped space that perfectly encapsulated Stiff‘s DIY spirit.

Barry Farmer, credited as Bazza on Stiff releases, was one of Pathway’s first engineers and his memories are still vivid: “It was a genuine shit-hole. You’d be confronted by the smell. It had a problem with damp and it smelled like an autumn woodland or an old toilet. It would cling to your clothes. Two days later you would still smell Pathway. Nick Lowe and I had a long discussion about it once. A few years ago I was getting out some old meters I still had kicking around and hadn’t done anything with, and they were in a box that was sealed up. I opened the box and smelled Pathway Studio. I don’t know what it was – such a strong, all-pervading smell.”

Some Stiff records recorded at Pathway:

Nick Lowe: So It Goes (BUY 1)

Pink Fairies: Between The Lines (BUY 2)

The Damned: New Rose (BUY 6)

Plummet Airlines: Silver Shirt (BUY 8)

The Damned: Neat Neat Neat (BUY 10)

The Adverts: One Chord Wonders (BUY 13)

Elvis Costello: Alison (BUY 14)

Elvis Costello: Red Shoes (BUY 15)

Wreckless Eric: Whole Wide World (BUY 16)

Yachts: Suffice To Say (BUY 19)

Larry Wallis: Police Car (BUY 22)

Wreckless Eric: Reconnez Cherie (BUY 25)

The Damned: Damned Damned Damned (SEEZ 1)

Elvis Costello: My Aim Is True (SEEZ 3)

Wreckless Eric: Wreckless Eric (SEEZ 6)

Lene Lovich: Stateless (SEEZ 7)

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