Tamworth Bands - History 1960-1990


Photograph courtesy: Tamworth Herald
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Musical Genre/Type: Prog Rock
Formed: 1983

Band Members:
Stuart Blain - Drums
Robin Bowen
Nigel Rowe
Tony Cole

Tamworth Herald Features:

Tamworth Herald – 11/11/83
Musicbox – Here’s an Eye opener
SINCE the untimely demise of Wilderness Laine, fans of music in the Genesis and Camel genre have had little to cheer about in Tamworth. But a new quartet of experienced musicians are set to change all that by bringing the sound of melodic progressive rock to a town currently besotted with new music and traditional heavy rock.

Eyes formed earlier this year when drummer Stuart Blain teamed up with Robin Bowen, Nigel Rowe and Tony Cole to form a band they hoped would be completely different to anything else in the town.

And they have clearly succeeded.

“It is impossible to put labels on what we play because we are influenced by so many varied acts,” said Stuart.

Among the band’s possible soundalikes are Camel, Manfred Mann and the artiste they feel is closest to their sound Peter Gabriel.

“I suppose it could be viewed as soft rock but there is more to it than that and I think we could appeal to quite a cross-section,” said Stuart.

As all the band are very experienced, they enjoy making their songs as challenging as possible by constantly adding pieces and complicating them. But won’t this turn a crowd off?

“I don’t think so,” claimed Robin. “I think a lot of people want to see good, well-structured rock music played well and that is what Eyes is all about.”

The band have so far written about eight mini-epic songs and believe that songwriting is something that should take time and care.

“We all want to take this band a long way and so it is essential that we start as we mean to go on by being as good as we can be at this stage,” said Stuart.

The band will make their debut on Saturday, November 26 when they will line up with the town’s top heavy band BHX at the Arts Centre. Before then, the band hope to carry the Tamworth banner into a 36-band contest held in Burton which in former years has featured the Classified Ads and Aardwolf.

“There is a need for this sort of music in Tamworth and we hope we will get the support from local rock fans to help us on our way,” said Robin.

Tamworth Herald – 18/11/83
Musicbox – Come on, join the bands
SEVEN Tamworth bands will be battling next week to win the prestigious Burton Musicians Union rock and pop contest.

This year the contest – which has included several top Tamworth bands over the years – features 24 groups from all over the East Midlands.

The contest is divided into four separate heats from Monday to Thursday and the top two bands on each night will be asked to appear at the grand final on Friday.

The amount of competitors from Tamworth is the highest ever – reflecting the increasingly healthy local scene.

On Monday night the town’s sole representatives are Talk Back who with their professional and commercial sound are sure to take some beating.

The following day tow Tamworth bands will be opening the proceedings – Vince Watts’ new band Formaldehyde and the rock band Prophecy, who line up alongside two bands oddly-named A5 and Minnus Tyreth.


On Wednesday night two of the town’s top bands, Laughter in Heaven and the Royal Family, should guarantee that at least one local act makes the final. Laughter’s gothic sound and the Royal Family’s blues could not be further apart musically but they are both certain to excite the panel of judges.

Thursday night throws up a very unusual coincidence. BHX and Eyes will both be appearing – the night before the two groups will be playing together in a previously arranged gig at the Arts Centre.

With such a varied selection of local bands playing, by the time you read this it is possible that three or four Tamworth bands will be getting ready to play at the grand final for a variety of prizes.

One things that all bands could certainly do with is support. In previous years Tamworth acts have suffered because they took no followers with them while groups from Burton and Derby particularly seemed to bring armies of fans.

Entrance to the Burton Town Hall on all five nights is just 50p – a remarkably small sum to see six new bands a night in action. It would do the Tamworth music scene enormous good for one of our bands to win ‘away from home’ and we must all keep our fingers crossed for local success.


Tamworth Herald – 25/11/83
Musicbox – Snips…Snips…Snips…
EYES, Tamworth’s new progressive rock band, have pulled out of tonight’s hig at the Arts Centre with BHX. The gig will still go ahead as planned but BHX are now searching for another support act. Entrance is only 40p and the gig begins at about 8pm.

Tamworth Arts Centre

Tamworth Herald – 24/02/84
Musicbox – SNIPS
BRILLIANT drummer Stuart Blaine has left Eyes – to the surprise of all the other members of the band. Although the departure was entirely amicable, Stu’s decision to give the band up after months of hard work has come as bitter blow to fellow member Robin Bowen.

“He was a really great drummer and I suppose his desire to do more live work made him leave,” said Robin.

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EYES…a Tamworth band to keep a lookout for.

If you have any further information about this band please email: info@tamworthbands.com

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