Sunday with The Stands

howie payne

I was watching the Isle of Wight Festival on INHD a few weeks ago, and stumbled upon a Liverpool-bred band that’s right up my alley: The Stands. Folky, Byrds – Beatles – Dylan influenced pop-rock. These guys are great live, has anyone out there seen them?

I got a hold of their second and latest album on the Liberation Music label, Horse Fabulous. Here are few selections:

The Stands: I Will Journey Home (mp3) | Mountains Blue And The World Through My Window (mp3) | Nearer Than Green (mp3)

UPDATE: Thanks to Bob in the first comment below who pointed out that the Stands exist no longer (bugger!). The band’s El Guapo, Howie Payne, decided to part ways. Here’s a little snippet from the Wikipedia entry:

On Thursday, 24 November, 2005 Howie Payne posted the following message on the band’s forum:

I thought I should be the one to break the news that after much thought I have decided to no longer continue with the stands, it has been a wonderfull few years or so but over the last months my heart has been slowly being drawn towards the idea of change and musical pastures new, there has been many changes leading to many reasons, recent times have been both creative and difficult in equal measure, I guess in order to seek clarity I want to now take the time to take some time to get some fresh air and move onto something new, we all thank each and every one of you all for all your support, taking the time to listen to our records and coming to see us play, it’s been a pleasure, thank you so much to you all. Howie.

Well son of a …. ah well, I’ll be keeping my eyes and ears open for Howie’s next musical escapade. Someone track him down and tell him I need an update.

  • Buy Horse Fabulous on Amazon UK.
  • The Stands Official Web Site
  • The Stands used to be: Howie Payne: lead guitar/vocals; Luke Thomson: guitar, Dean Ravea: bass; and drummer Graeme Robinson)



    hate to be the bearer of bad news fella – but The Stands are no more – Howie the main man is moving on – no doubt to the lack of units shifted in the UK and a record company thats only interested in ££££ !!! I have a feeling that they Howie will be back when he has finished listening to ALL his Dylan vinyl !

  • Andrew Stasney

    Hey there- I am pleased to see your review of The Stands’ second and last album Horse Fabulous. I am a huge fan of the Stands, and I was really devestated to hear that lead man Howie Payne had broken the band up in November shortly after the album’s release.

    I did a little investigating because I was curious how such a prolific album, cited in Q and various mags as a Best of 2005, had fallen between the cracks and found that the ‘lack of units shifted’ in the UK was a result of a massive downsizing by Echo Records, the band’s former label in their home UK, which gave the album virtually no promotion on release, at which time The Stands left Echo Records.

    It is really a shame that corporate music industry shifts could have allowed an album as incredible as Horse Fabulous to slip between the cracks- especially at a time that so much NME-carbon-copy shit is being pushed.

    I have been so happy to see the number of blog and press interest in The Stands soar in the past few months as Horse Fabulous has made the rounds via internet. I have no doubt that both Stands albums will int itme prove to be regarded as classic as their cult fame grows. Howie Payne has got to be one of the most genuinely talented songwriters and lyricists of the past several years. I really hope to hear more from him as well.

    As a side note, there are a ton of incredible bootlegs floating around the Stands website at the moment, check them out in the Chat section. Please post any more you hear about Howie Payne.

  • Anonymous

    I’m really pleased too to see a review of Horse Fabulous as it was one of my favourites of last year.

    Having recently chatted with Howie, he has told me that he will be starting his own project in the near future after having several months away, recuperating.

    I cannot wait now for what he produces… i bet you all are too!

  • andrew stinson

    i saw the most amazing unnanounced gig of howie payne and his new backing band the belle sonics this past friday 16th june at the hammersmith apollo. howie payne and belle sonics supported the zutons, his brother sean payne’s band- i was completely stunned by how good it was! i found a whole slew of new tunes on myspace on howie’s solo page: http://www.myspace.com/howiepayne i have no doubt they will be snatched up as at the moment he appears unsigned. he guy is just brilliant, the real deal in the vein of a liverpool dylan. it’s so refreshing to see some real rocknroll amidst the mock indie drabness of nme bands that are getting so much airplay at the moment in britain. long live howie payne!!

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