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Ash (band)

Ash (band)

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Ash are an alternative rock
Alternative rock
Alternative rock is a genre of rock music and a term used to describe a diverse musical movement that emerged from the independent music underground of the 1980s and became widely popular by the 1990s...

 band that formed in Downpatrick
Downpatrick
Downpatrick is a medium-sized town about 33 km south of Belfast in County Down, Northern Ireland. It is the county town of Down with a rich history and strong connection to Saint Patrick. It had a population of 10,316 at the 2001 Census...

, Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland is one of the four countries of the United Kingdom. Situated in the north-east of the island of Ireland, it shares a border with the Republic of Ireland to the south and west...

 in 1992. The band has sold 8 million albums worldwide.

Band beginning, Trailer and 1977 (1992–1998)


Ash officially formed in 1992, reportedly having taken their name from the first word they liked in the dictionary. They have also mentioned in interviews of a past drummer who was 19 before Rick joined the band. They created three demo tapes that year, Solar Happy in June, Shed in September, and the Home Demo in November. These tapes featured their earliest material and the first recordings of some songs that were later on their 1994 release, Trailer
Trailer (album)
Trailer is a punk influenced mini album by the band Ash featuring their first three singles. An expanded edition also includes 4 b-sides. The album was released in October, 1994 through Infectious Records...

, including "Intense Thing", "Get Out", "Obscure Thing," and their future single, "Jack Names the Planets".

In 1993 Ash recorded the Garage Girl demo tape, which featured "Jack Names the Planets" and "Intense Thing" taken from Shed, as well as some new tracks including "Petrol". Following Garage Girl, they released their compilation demo tape, Pipe Smokin' Brick later that year, which featured an assortment of their best songs from the other 4 demo tapes. Downpatrick Musician Ray Valentine recorded Ash's demo's at his studio, Cosmic Rays. Ash's moniker at the time was "Genuine Real Teenagers," because they were so young when recording their early material. The demo tapes had not gained much attention yet and Ash were still playing small shows at local clubs, but in early 1994, Stephen Taverner came across the Garage Girl demo tape. Taverner put up the money so that they could press 1000 7″
Gramophone record
A gramophone record, commonly known as a phonograph record , vinyl record , or colloquially, a record, is an analog sound storage medium consisting of a flat disc with an inscribed, modulated spiral groove...

 copies of "Jack Names the Planets" on Stephen's own LaLaLand record label. The band was on its way, and Stephen became their full-time manager.

Ash released their mini album, Trailer, in October 1994, which only included seven songs. They received some airplay from Steve Lamacq on BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1 is a British national radio station operated by the British Broadcasting Corporation which also broadcasts internationally, specialising in current popular music and chart hits throughout the day. Radio 1 provides alternative genres after 7:00pm including electronic dance, hip hop, rock...

 and so followed up their debut single with "Petrol", and "Uncle Pat
Uncle Pat
"Uncle Pat" is a song by Ash, released as the third single from their album Trailer, released on 17 October 1994. It was released as a single CD and a 7" vinyl...

" on their new label Infectious Records
Infectious Records
Infectious Records is a record label whose bands have included Ash, Local Natives, Symposium, My Vitriol, Seafood, The Paradise Motel, General Fiasco and The Subways. Infectious was established by Korda Marshall after leaving RCA, and became part of Marshall's Mushroom Records UK operation in the...

. In 1995, Ash left school and released their breakthrough singles "Kung Fu
Kung Fu (song)
"Kung Fu" is a song by Ash, released as the first single from their album 1977 on 20 March 1995 - as a CD single, limited edition 7”, and standard 7” vinyl....

" (which is played in the end credits of Jackie Chan
Jackie Chan
Jackie Chan, SBS, MBE is a Hong Kong actor, action choreographer, comedian, director, producer, martial artist, screenwriter, entrepreneur, singer and stunt performer. In his movies, he is known for his acrobatic fighting style, comic timing, use of improvised weapons, and innovative stunts...

's North American breakthrough film, Rumble in the Bronx
Rumble in the Bronx
Rumble in the Bronx is a 1995 Hong Kong martial arts action comedy film starring Jackie Chan and Anita Mui. Released in the US in 1995, Rumble in the Bronx had a successful theater run, and brought Chan into the American mainstream...

), "Girl From Mars
Girl From Mars
"Girl from Mars" is a single by Northern Ireland band Ash, the second to be released from the album 1977. It was released on 31 July 1995 on CD, a 7" vinyl, and as a cassette...

" and "Angel Interceptor
Angel Interceptor
"Angel Interceptor" is a song by Ash, released as the third single from their album 1977 on 9 October 1995. It was released as a single CD, a 7" vinyl, and as a cassette....

". The movie Angus was released, which featured two of Ash's songs, "Jack Names the Planets" and "Kung Fu," and served to introduce Ash to American audiences. The band had offered two other tracks that were cut, along with Pansy Division's Deep Water, which made the soundtrack but was cut from the movie due to time constraints.

1996 saw them release the singles "Goldfinger
Goldfinger (1996 single)
"Goldfinger" is a song by Ash, released from their album 1977 on 15 April 1996. It was released as a single CD, a 7" vinyl , and as a cassette. "Goldfinger" was Ash's first Top 10 hit and sparked a reaction that helped their debut album get to No...

" and "Oh Yeah" either side of their album 1977, which saw considerable success. The track "Lose Control" from that album was featured in the video game Gran Turismo
Gran Turismo (video game)
is a racing simulator designed by Kazunori Yamauchi. Gran Turismo was developed by Polyphony Digital and first published by Sony Computer Entertainment in 1997 for the PlayStation video game console...

. On 17 February 1997, Ash released Live at the Wireless
Live at the Wireless (Ash album)
Live at the Wireless was a limited edition, live album by Ash, released in 1997. It was recorded live at the Triple J Studios in Australia during the group's 1996 Australian tour and printed on the band's own Deathstar label....

, a live album, recorded at the Triple J Studios
Triple J
triple j is a nationally networked Australian radio station intended to appeal to listeners between the ages of 18 and 30. The government-funded station is a division of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation...

 in Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

. The UK
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 fans could buy a limited edition CD of it on the band's own Deathstar label.

Charlotte Hatherley, Nu-Clear Sounds and Free All Angels (1998–2004)


During their time touring with Weezer
Weezer
Weezer is an American alternative rock band. The band currently consists of Rivers Cuomo , Patrick Wilson , Brian Bell , and Scott Shriner . The band has changed lineups three times since its formation in 1992...

, Ash felt the limitation of a three-piece band. As a result they recruited Charlotte Hatherley
Charlotte Hatherley
Charlotte Franklin Hatherley is an English guitarist and singer-songwriter. She initially came to prominence as guitarist and backing vocalist for alternative rock band Ash. Since departing Ash in 2006, she has found success as a solo artist...

 who had previously been with the band Nightnurse
Nightnurse
Nightnurse was an indie rock band from London, UK, who had some success in the late 1990s. They released three singles, with their second "Skirt" reaching no. 11 in the UK independent singles chart in February 1998...

 and she made her gig debut at a few small gigs a week before appearing at the V Festival
V Festival
The V Festival is an annual music festival held in England during the penultimate weekend in August. The event is held at two parks simultaneously which share the same bill; artists perform at one location on Saturday and then swap on Sunday. The sites are located at Hylands Park in Chelmsford and...

 in 1997. The first single that she appeared on, "A Life Less Ordinary
A Life Less Ordinary (1997 single)
"A Life Less Ordinary" was a non-album single released by the band Ash on October 25, 1997. It was the title track of the film of the same name, "A Life Less Ordinary", starring Ewan McGregor and Cameron Diaz, and also appeared on the film's soundtrack. The single was released in three formats: CD,...

", featured on the soundtrack
Soundtrack
A soundtrack can be recorded music accompanying and synchronized to the images of a motion picture, book, television program or video game; a commercially released soundtrack album of music as featured in the soundtrack of a film or TV show; or the physical area of a film that contains the...

 to the Ewan McGregor
Ewan McGregor
Ewan Gordon McGregor is a Scottish actor. He has had success in mainstream, indie, and art house films. McGregor is perhaps best known for his roles as heroin addict Mark Renton in the drama Trainspotting , young Jedi Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars prequel trilogy , and poet Christian in the...

 / Cameron Diaz
Cameron Diaz
Cameron Michelle Diaz is an American actress and former model. She became famous during the 1990s with roles in the movies The Mask, My Best Friend's Wedding, and There's Something About Mary. Other high-profile credits include the two Charlie's Angels films, voicing the character Princess Fiona...

 film of the same name.

In September 1998, Ash released "Jesus Says
Jesus Says
"Jesus Says" is a song by Ash, released as the first single from their album Nu-Clear Sounds on September 21, 1998, reaching number 15 in the UK singles chart. It was released as a single CD, a 7" vinyl, and as a cassette. "Jesus Says", despite its considerably low chart placing was Ash's highest...

" the following month the second album proper, Nu-Clear Sounds
Nu-Clear Sounds
Nu-Clear Sounds is the second official studio album by Ash, released on 5 October 1998. Despite not being as publicly acclaimed as the other albums, it was certified Gold by the BPI.On May 11, 1999 Nu-Clear Sounds was released in the United States....

, and in November "Wildsurf
Wildsurf
"Wildsurf" is a song by Ash, release as the second single from the album Nu-Clear Sounds on November 22, 1998, reaching number 31 in the UK singles chart. It was released as a single CD, a 7" vinyl, and as a cassette. "Wildsurf" scored a low placing in the charts due to the record company's...

". The stress of near non-stop touring of 1977 and Nu-Clear Sounds began to affect the band's mentality. In 1999, Tim Wheeler disappeared for a short while following the commercial and critical failure of Nu-Clear Sounds
Nu-Clear Sounds
Nu-Clear Sounds is the second official studio album by Ash, released on 5 October 1998. Despite not being as publicly acclaimed as the other albums, it was certified Gold by the BPI.On May 11, 1999 Nu-Clear Sounds was released in the United States....

. He eventually emerged in New York making the self-deprecating, blood, drug and sex fueled video for Numbskull. A note for Stephen Taverner attached to the video said, "I've killed Bambi".

Ash nearly became bankrupt as they prepared to release possibly their last album. Luckily, this was not to be the case. The band retreated to Wheeler's parents' house, to play and write songs in the same garage where the band began. The single "Shining Light
Shining Light
"Shining Light" is a song by Ash, which was released as the first single from their album Free All Angels. It was released on 29 January 2001. It was released as a single CD and as a 7" vinyl . It was also Ash's first single to be released as an enhanced CD...

" was released in January 2001, followed by the number one album Free All Angels
Free All Angels
Free All Angels is the third studio album by Ash, which was initially released on 16 April 2001, through Infectious Records. The name of the album is taken from a T-shirt worn by a Hells Angel....

in April. Subsequent singles released from Free All Angels were "Burn Baby Burn", "Sometimes
Sometimes (Ash song)
"Sometimes" was the third single released from the Free All Angels album by the band Ash on June 9, 2001. It was released as a single CD as a 7" vinyl , as well as on DVD format...

", "Candy", and "There's a Star
There's a Star
"There's a Star" is a song by Ash, released as the fifth and final single from their album Free All Angels, on 31 December 2001. It was released as a single CD as a 7" vinyl, as well as on DVD format...

" . The single "Shining Light" won the "Best Contemporary Song" award at the 2002 Ivor Novello awards. A new single "Envy" was released, followed shortly afterwards by the singles collection Intergalactic Sonic 7″s with the bonus disk entitled Cosmic Debris. Q magazine
Q (magazine)
Q is a popular music magazine published monthly in the United Kingdom.Founders Mark Ellen and David Hepworth were dismayed by the music press of the time, which they felt was ignoring a generation of older music buyers who were buying CDs — then still a new technology...

 named Ash as #2 of its "50 Bands To See Before You Die".

In 2003, it was leaked to the music and tabloid press that Ash were working on a horror film described as a 'teen slasher'. The film, called Slashed
Slashed
Slashed is a low budget independent horror film, financed and directed by Ash and written by Jed Shepherd. The film was shot in 2002, purely on a video camcorder when Ash were on tour in the United States supporting Coldplay - who subsequently appeared in the movie as detectives, along with various...

, was shot while the band were on tour in America but some scenes were also shot in the UK. The screenplay, written by Jed Shepherd and directed by Alexander Marks included star roles by Chris Martin
Chris Martin
Christopher Anthony John "Chris" Martin is an English song-writer, who is the lead vocalist, pianist and rhythm guitarist of the band Coldplay. He is married to actress Gwyneth Paltrow.-Early life:...

 (Sherbet Bones) and Jonny Buckland
Jonny Buckland
Jonathan Mark "Jonny" Buckland is an English guitarist and musician, best known as the lead guitarist of the band Coldplay.-Early life:...

 (Agent Ford) of Coldplay
Coldplay
Coldplay are a British alternative rock band formed in 1996 by lead vocalist Chris Martin and lead guitarist Jonny Buckland at University College London. After they formed Pectoralz, Guy Berryman joined the group as a bassist and they changed their name to Starfish. Will Champion joined as a...

 as a pair of FBI agents hired to track down a supernatural serial killer. Other star performances include that of Moby
Moby
Richard Melville Hall , better known by his stage name Moby, is an American musician, DJ, and photographer. He is known mainly for his sample-based electronic music and his outspoken liberal political views, including his support of veganism and animal rights.Moby gained attention in the early...

, James Nesbitt
James Nesbitt
James Nesbitt is a Northern Irish actor. Born in Ballymena, County Antrim, Nesbitt grew up in the nearby village of Broughshane, before moving to Coleraine, County Londonderry. He wanted to become a teacher like his father, so he began a degree in French at the University of Ulster...

, Dave Grohl
Dave Grohl
David Eric "Dave" Grohl is an American rock musician, multi-instrumentalist, and singer-songwriter who is the lead vocalist, guitarist, and primary songwriter for Foo Fighters; the former drummer for Nirvana and Scream; and the current drummer for Them Crooked Vultures...

 and Ash themselves. The film was was never generally released to the public.

Meltdown and Hatherley's departure (2004–2006)



On 29 June 2004, Ash released Meltdown, which reached number five in the UK. At the same time Hatherley also wrote and recorded her solo side project album Grey Will Fade
Grey Will Fade
Grey Will Fade is the debut album from British singer/songwriter Charlotte Hatherley, released in 2004 whilst still playing guitar in British rock band Ash...

. The band teamed up with Lucasarts
LucasArts
LucasArts Entertainment Company, LLC is an American video game developer and publisher. The company was once famous for its innovative line of graphic adventure games, the critical and commercial success of which peaked in the mid 1990s...

 for a new Star Wars
Star Wars
Star Wars is an American epic space opera film series created by George Lucas. The first film in the series was originally released on May 25, 1977, under the title Star Wars, by 20th Century Fox, and became a worldwide pop culture phenomenon, followed by two sequels, released at three-year...

 game entitled Republic Commando
Star Wars: Republic Commando
Star Wars: Republic Commando is a first-person shooter Star Wars video game, released in the US on March 1, 2005. It was developed and published by LucasArts for the Microsoft Windows and Xbox platforms. The game uses Epic Games' Unreal Engine...

. "Clones", taken from the album Meltdown is the first licensed music to be used in anything Star Wars-related. "Meltdown" and "Orpheus" are featured on the popular British
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 movie, Shaun of the Dead
Shaun of the Dead
Shaun of the Dead is a 2004 British zombie comedy directed by Edgar Wright, starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, and written by Pegg and Wright. Pegg plays Shaun, a man attempting to get some kind of focus in his life as he deals with his girlfriend, his mother and stepfather...

as well as appearing on the in-game soundtracks for the video games NHL 2005
NHL 2005
NHL 2005, the successor to NHL 2004, is a hockey video game first released on September 14, 2004 in North America and September 24, 2004 in the PAL region.-Improvements/flaws:...

, Burnout 3: Takedown
Burnout 3: Takedown
Burnout 3: Takedown is the third game in the Burnout series of video games. Released on September 7, 2004, developed by Criterion Games and published by Electronic Arts , the game drew critical acclaim and a large fanbase.A GameCube version was planned but was scrapped during development...

 and Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition
Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition
Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition is a racing game, developed by Rockstar San Diego and published by Rockstar Games, and is the third game in the Midnight Club series. Like previous installments in the series, the game is an arcade-style racer and focuses on wild, high-speed racing, rather than...

. Also featured is their cover of the Buzzcocks
Buzzcocks
Buzzcocks are an English punk rock band formed in Bolton in 1976, led by singer–songwriter–guitarist Pete Shelley.They are regarded as an important influence on the Manchester music scene, the independent record label movement, punk rock, power pop, pop punk and indie rock. They achieved commercial...

 song "Everybody's Happy Nowadays" featuring Chris Martin
Chris Martin
Christopher Anthony John "Chris" Martin is an English song-writer, who is the lead vocalist, pianist and rhythm guitarist of the band Coldplay. He is married to actress Gwyneth Paltrow.-Early life:...

 on backing vocals. The song "Vampire Love" was featured in American Pie Presents: Band Camp. Starcrossed
Starcrossed (song)
"Starcrossed" was the third single released in a physical format from the Meltdown album by the band Ash on July 19, 2004. It was released as a single CD as a gatefold 7" vinyl, as well as on DVD format and various promo copies...

 and "Renegade Cavalcade" were later released as singles from the album. Meltdown was released in the US on 8 March 2005, through Warner Bros. Records
Warner Bros. Records
Warner Bros. Records Inc. is an American record label. It was the foundation label of the present-day Warner Music Group, and now operates as a wholly owned subsidiary of that corporation. It maintains a close relationship with its former parent, Warner Bros. Pictures, although the two companies...

 imprint Record Collection. Also in 2005, Tim Wheeler received a companionship (an honorary degree) from LIPA (Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts)
Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts
The Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts is, despite its young age, one of the United Kingdom's leading institutions for the performing arts. The university is situated in the English city of Liverpool...

.

On 20 January 2006, Hatherley left the band after nine years leaving only the original members remaining. An official statement reads: "After 9 years Ash and Charlotte Hatherley have mutually agreed to part company. The decision is completely amicable and they wish each other the very best for the future". In an interview in July 2007, the other band members suggested they asked Hatherley to leave as they "wanted to be a three-piece."

Twilight of the Innocents, 1977, A to Z Singles & Second Greatest Hits (2006–present)


On 6 June 2006, NME reported that Ash were in a New York
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

 recording studio
Recording studio
A recording studio is a facility for sound recording and mixing. Ideally both the recording and monitoring spaces are specially designed by an acoustician to achieve optimum acoustic properties...

 and had twenty seven "rough" songs. Wheeler hinted that the eventual album was likely to be more retro
Retro
Retro is a culturally outdated or aged style, trend, mode, or fashion, from the overall postmodern past, that has since that time become functionally or superficially the norm once again. The use of "retro" style iconography and imagery interjected into post-modern art, advertising, mass media, etc...

 sounding than any of their previous material. No shows were planned for the remainder of 2006, but Wheeler stated that they were hoping to test out their new songs "in tiny New York bars" once the album was complete. In early 2007, Ash announced a full-length UK tour for February and March. The tour was a warm-up for their album release in June and their summer festival appearances, including the Isle of Wight Festival
Isle of Wight Festival 2007
The Isle of Wight Festival 2007 was the sixth revived Isle of Wight Festival on the Seaclose Park site in Newport on the Isle of Wight. It took place between 8 June – 10 June 2007. Tickets went on sale at 9am on Thursday 22 February and were sold out by Monday 26 February. It was the first festival...

 on 9 June 2007.

On 19 February 2007 Ash released the first song from their new album, titled Twilight of the Innocents
Twilight of the Innocents
Twilight of the Innocents is the fifth and final studio album by Ash, released on June 29, 2007 in the Republic of Ireland and July 2, 2007 in the United States and the United Kingdom...

. This new material was a download-only sneak preview track called "I Started A Fire
I Started A Fire
I Started A Fire is the first single taken from Ash's fifth album 'Twilight of the Innocents'. Released as a free MP4 video download through the bands official website....

". The first physical single "You Can't Have It All
You Can't Have It All
"You Can't Have It All" is the name of the first single from Ash's 2007 album, Twilight of the Innocents. The single received its first play on 7 March on Jo Whiley's Radio 1 show...

" was released on 16 April 2007. The release of "You Can't Have It All" coincided with an in-store gig and signing session at Virgin Megastore in Belfast. The music video for the song debuted on MTV Two on 11 March 2007. Two further songs from the album, "Polaris
Polaris (song)
"Polaris" is the second single from the album Twilight of the Innocents by the band Ash. It was released in the on June 15 in Ireland and the United Kingdom and the United States on June 18, 2007, reaching number 32 in the UK singles chart and number 34 in the US singles chartThe band released the...

" and "End of the World
End of the World (Ash song)
"End of the World" is the third single released from alternative rock band Ash's final album, Twilight of the Innocents. It was released on 10 September 2007 on gatefold 7" vinyl, bagged 7", CD single and two digital download formats....

", were issued as singles in June and September, respectively.

On 12 June 2007 Ash revealed that Twilight of the Innocents
Twilight of the Innocents
Twilight of the Innocents is the fifth and final studio album by Ash, released on June 29, 2007 in the Republic of Ireland and July 2, 2007 in the United States and the United Kingdom...

would be their last album. They also denied that they were splitting and instead stated that they would only release singles from now on as "(t)he way people listen to music has changed, with the advent of the download the emphasis has reverted to single tracks".

With the return to their original three-piece line-up, the band had been mainly performing material from albums 1977 and Twilight of the Innocents
Twilight of the Innocents
Twilight of the Innocents is the fifth and final studio album by Ash, released on June 29, 2007 in the Republic of Ireland and July 2, 2007 in the United States and the United Kingdom...

, this led to the band performing at London Roundhouse on Friday 5 September and Saturday 6 September 2008, which saw the band perform 1977 in its entirety. Both shows sold out and the band went on to release a 3-disc special edition version of the album, featuring remastered and re-edited versions of the tracks, as well as tracks from Trailer and live performances from the time of its release.

In late 2008, the band stated they had been writing and recording new tracks, bassist Mark Hamilton stated, "we’re just taking track at a time and seeing what happens, no limits to where or what it’ll sound like. A few of the songs are barely recognisable as Ash which is pretty exciting to see how people react when they hear them." A number of track titles were also revealed including "Neon, part 2".

On 16 April 2009, Ash announced they were to play a one-off gig at Bloomsbury Ballroom, London, to preview new tracks and start promoting their new material. An additional date was also added at the same venue a few days later, along with a handful of warm-up shows. The first single to be released was announced on 30 April titled "Return of White Rabbit". The three band members hand created 178 sleeves each for the physical singles, each of which will be available to win in different competitions being run through the band's website. On 18 May it was announced that the band would be releasing 26 singles, one every fortnight for the rest of 2009, known as the A to Z singles series
A-Z Series (Ash)
The A–Z Series was a series of single format releases by alternative rock band Ash. The series consists of 26 singles, released through digital download and vinyl every fortnight beginning on 12 October 2009 and ending 27 September 2010, with two compilation CD's Volume's 1 & 2, released on 19...

.
In August 2009 they played at the Hevy Music Festival
Hevy Music Festival
Hevy Music Festival is a rock festival that takes place annually near Folkestone in the UK. It was originally held on 1 August 2009 on Folkestone seafront as a one-day festival with Feeder, Gary Numan and Ash as headliners. In 2010 it moved to Port Lympne Wild Animal Park and grew to a weekend...

 in Folkestone, and in June 2010 they headlined the John Peel Stage on the last night of Glastonbury Festival
Glastonbury Festival
The Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts, commonly abbreviated to Glastonbury or even Glasto, is a performing arts festival that takes place near Pilton, Somerset, England, best known for its contemporary music, but also for dance, comedy, theatre, circus, cabaret and other arts.The...

.

In September 2010, Ash made their first appearance in South Africa
South Africa
The Republic of South Africa is a country in southern Africa. Located at the southern tip of Africa, it is divided into nine provinces, with of coastline on the Atlantic and Indian oceans...

 to support local rock group The Parlotones
The Parlotones
The Parlotones is a rock band based in Johannesburg, South Africa. They have achieved multiplatinum-selling status in their home country. They experiment with their sound and various structures in their songs, incorporating the typical doo-wop or traditional folk structures. The Parlotones are...

 on the South African leg of their world tour. Ash made an appearance on the South African Idols
Idols (South Africa)
Idols is a television show on the South African television network M-Net, based on the popular British show Pop Idol. The show is a contest to determine the best young singer in South Africa....

 and have also appeared on various South African radio and television stations, including locally popular MK.

In June 2011, Ash announced that a greatest hits
The Best of Ash
The Best of Ash is a forthcoming greatest hits album by the band Ash, to be released on 17 October 2011.A CD/DVD edition of the album includes the Teenage Wildlife documentary of Ash's 1977 tour, as well as all the band's music videos....

 record was in the works.

In August 2011 Ash collaborated with We Are Scientists
We Are Scientists
We Are Scientists is a New York-based indie rock band that formed in Berkeley, California in 2000. Originally formed of Keith Murray on drums, Chris Cain playing bass guitar and Scott Lamb providing vocals and guitar, before Michael Tapper became drummer and Keith became vocalist and guitarist...

 to release a cover of the song "Washington Parks" by British songwriter Robert Manning, raising money and awareness for Multiple Sclerosis and The MS Society. The song was recorded between London and New York by the two bands and join a project already boasting releases from Ed Hardcourt and Emmy the Great. Chris Cain from We Are Scientists said in an interview "We actually recorded a single [with Ash] which is going to come out soon. It won't be too long until it's out and it's for a charity in England called the Multiple Sclerosis Society. It's a cover of a song called “Washington Parks” by I think Happy Monster but it's pretty sweet. The concept of the song is that if you listen to it on headphones or stereo the musicians of Ash are on the left channel and all the We Are Scientists guys are playing it in the right channel. We're playing the same song essentially but in different ways. I'm not playing the same bass line as Mark and Rick isn't playing the same drum pattern as Andy. I think Keith and Tim sing the same thing but in a different sort of harmony. What's interesting especially is that not only do we have a unison feel going on but you can also take off one headphone and hear one band and vice versa."

Line-up


The band set out as a three piece originally, later recruiting Hatherley as a second guitarist. After nine years in the band, Hatherley was asked to leave so that the band could once again return to a three piece. Without a second guitarist some of the material from Meltdown, Free All Angels and Nu-Clear Sounds has not since been played, while various singles and material from the albums Twilight of the Innocents and 1977 have made up the majority of material performed recently. McMurray, after the departure of Hatherley has taken over a lot of her backing vocal duties, whilst Mark provides backing vocals occasionally in studio, but not live. The band have stated that whilst there are no immediate plans to tour with the material written and recorded with Hatherley still in the band, "never say never", and that there was a possibility they may at some point tour with Hatherley again, in NME
NME
The New Musical Express is a popular music publication in the United Kingdom, published weekly since March 1952. It started as a music newspaper, and gradually moved toward a magazine format during the 1980s, changing from newsprint in 1998. It was the first British paper to include a singles...

 in June 2009 Hatherley also commented on the split stating her and Wheeler were regularly talking, and that playing together again was a possibility in the future.

In April 2010 Bloc Party guitarist Russell Lissack
Russell Lissack
Russell Dean Lissack is an English musician best known as the lead guitarist of London based indie rock band, Bloc Party. Lissack is also in the electronica band Pin Me Down; a duo of himself and Milena Mepris...

 joined the band for their UK tour and has since continued to tour with them worldwide throughout 2010.

In June 2011 LaFaro
Lafaro
LaFaro are a four piece alternative rock band from Belfast, Northern Ireland. They consist of Jonny Black , Dave Magee , Cahir O'Doherty and Alan Lynn .-History:...

 drummer Alan Lynn stood in for Rick McMurray (who was having a baby) for a short European tour.

In September 2011, it was confirmed that Charlotte Hatherley would return for a set of special shows, celebrating the release of their 'Best of Ash' album. The shows will include the four piece playing the seminal Free All Angels album in its entirety and a "Best of" set.

Band members

  • Tim Wheeler
    Tim Wheeler
    Tim Wheeler is the Northern Irish guitarist, songwriter and vocalist for the rock band, Ash. He formed the band with Mark Hamilton and they were originally called Vietnam. Wheeler can be seen playing a Korina Gibson Flying V in almost all of Ash's music videos...

     – lead vocals, lead guitar
    Guitar
    The guitar is a plucked string instrument, usually played with fingers or a pick. The guitar consists of a body with a rigid neck to which the strings, generally six in number, are attached. Guitars are traditionally constructed of various woods and strung with animal gut or, more recently, with...

    , piano
    Piano
    The piano is a musical instrument played by means of a keyboard. It is one of the most popular instruments in the world. Widely used in classical and jazz music for solo performances, ensemble use, chamber music and accompaniment, the piano is also very popular as an aid to composing and rehearsal...

    /keyboards
    Keyboard instrument
    A keyboard instrument is a musical instrument which is played using a musical keyboard. The most common of these is the piano. Other widely used keyboard instruments include organs of various types as well as other mechanical, electromechanical and electronic instruments...

     (1992–present)
  • Mark Hamilton – bass
    Bass guitar
    The bass guitar is a stringed instrument played primarily with the fingers or thumb , or by using a pick....

    , synthesizer
    Synthesizer
    A synthesizer is an electronic instrument capable of producing sounds by generating electrical signals of different frequencies. These electrical signals are played through a loudspeaker or set of headphones...

     (1992–present)
  • Rick McMurray – drums
    Drum kit
    A drum kit is a collection of drums, cymbals and often other percussion instruments, such as cowbells, wood blocks, triangles, chimes, or tambourines, arranged for convenient playing by a single person ....

    , percussion (1992–present)


Former members
  • Charlotte Hatherley
    Charlotte Hatherley
    Charlotte Franklin Hatherley is an English guitarist and singer-songwriter. She initially came to prominence as guitarist and backing vocalist for alternative rock band Ash. Since departing Ash in 2006, she has found success as a solo artist...

     – guitar
    Guitar
    The guitar is a plucked string instrument, usually played with fingers or a pick. The guitar consists of a body with a rigid neck to which the strings, generally six in number, are attached. Guitars are traditionally constructed of various woods and strung with animal gut or, more recently, with...

    , piano
    Piano
    The piano is a musical instrument played by means of a keyboard. It is one of the most popular instruments in the world. Widely used in classical and jazz music for solo performances, ensemble use, chamber music and accompaniment, the piano is also very popular as an aid to composing and rehearsal...

    , backing vocals (1997–2006, 2011)


Touring members
  • Russell Lissack
    Russell Lissack
    Russell Dean Lissack is an English musician best known as the lead guitarist of London based indie rock band, Bloc Party. Lissack is also in the electronica band Pin Me Down; a duo of himself and Milena Mepris...

     - rhythm guitar (2010–present)
  • Alan Lynn
    Lafaro
    LaFaro are a four piece alternative rock band from Belfast, Northern Ireland. They consist of Jonny Black , Dave Magee , Cahir O'Doherty and Alan Lynn .-History:...

     - drums, percussion (2011)

Studio albums

  • Trailer
    Trailer (album)
    Trailer is a punk influenced mini album by the band Ash featuring their first three singles. An expanded edition also includes 4 b-sides. The album was released in October, 1994 through Infectious Records...

    – October 1994
  • 1977 – 6 May 1996 – Platinum (BPI)
  • Nu-Clear Sounds
    Nu-Clear Sounds
    Nu-Clear Sounds is the second official studio album by Ash, released on 5 October 1998. Despite not being as publicly acclaimed as the other albums, it was certified Gold by the BPI.On May 11, 1999 Nu-Clear Sounds was released in the United States....

    – 5 October 1998 – Platinum (BPI)
  • Free All Angels
    Free All Angels
    Free All Angels is the third studio album by Ash, which was initially released on 16 April 2001, through Infectious Records. The name of the album is taken from a T-shirt worn by a Hells Angel....

    – 23 April 2001 – Platinum (BPI)
  • Meltdown – 17 May 2004 – Platinum (BPI)
  • Twilight of the Innocents
    Twilight of the Innocents
    Twilight of the Innocents is the fifth and final studio album by Ash, released on June 29, 2007 in the Republic of Ireland and July 2, 2007 in the United States and the United Kingdom...

    – 2 July 2007

Single format


The band announced in 2007 with the release of Twilight of the Innocents that they would be switching to single format for further releases. The first series of singles were released every fortnight
Fortnight
The fortnight is a unit of time equal to fourteen days, or two weeks. The word derives from the Old English fēowertyne niht, meaning "fourteen nights"....

 and consisted of 26 singles, plus additional tracks for those who paid for the entire series in advance.
  • A-Z Series
    A-Z Series (Ash)
    The A–Z Series was a series of single format releases by alternative rock band Ash. The series consists of 26 singles, released through digital download and vinyl every fortnight beginning on 12 October 2009 and ending 27 September 2010, with two compilation CD's Volume's 1 & 2, released on 19...

    (2009/2010)

External links