Big Big Train

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At a Glance

Formed: 1990 (24 years ago)


Biography

Big Big Train have released eight albums including the critically acclaimed CD's English Electric Part One(2012), English Electric Part Two (2013) and The Underfall Yard (2009). An extended length EP, Far Skies Deep Time, was also released in 2010.

Big Big Train is based in England and the band’s line-up is:

Andy Poole / Danny Manners / Dave Gregory / David Longdon / Nick D’Virgilio / Greg Spawton

Big Big Train was formed in 1990 by Andy Poole and Greg Spawton.

In 1991, Andy and Greg were joined by Ian Cooper (keyboards), Steve Hughes (drums) and vocalist Martin Read. A demo cassette ... Read more

Big Big Train have released eight albums including the critically acclaimed CD's English Electric Part One(2012), English Electric Part Two (2013) and The Underfall Yard (2009). An extended length EP, Far Skies Deep Time, was also released in 2010.

Big Big Train is based in England and the band’s line-up is:

Andy Poole / Danny Manners / Dave Gregory / David Longdon / Nick D’Virgilio / Greg Spawton

Big Big Train was formed in 1990 by Andy Poole and Greg Spawton.

In 1991, Andy and Greg were joined by Ian Cooper (keyboards), Steve Hughes (drums) and vocalist Martin Read. A demo cassette tape of the band’s first songs was released in October 1991 and was followed by Big Big Train’s first live performances. The demo tape ‘From the River to the Sea’was re-recorded and released as a self-financed demo CD in May 1992, following which BBT played some higher profile gigs in England.

In January 1993, a second demo tape, ‘The Infant Hercules’ was released and the band then spent the next six months writing the music for its first album,‘Goodbye to the Age of Steam’. This was recorded in a two week period in July 1993. Soon afterwards, BBT signed to the progressive rock label GEP where they became label mates of IQ.

Ian Cooper left the band in early 1995 and live performances were put on hold while a replacement was sought and a new album was written.

Recording of BBT's second album commenced in July of 1995 (with Greg filling in on keyboards) and continued, sporadically, until completion 18 months later. During the sessions, a new keyboard player, Tony Müller was recruited. Some of the songs from the new album were debuted at the band’s only show from this period at the Astoria, London. ‘English Boy Wonders’ was finally released in autumn 1997, although in an incomplete state as the band had run out of money to finish the album.

Steve Hughes left Big Big Train in September 1998 and went on to join The Enid. He was replaced by Pete Hibbit. After disappointing sales of English Boy Wonders, the band were dropped by their record label, GEP.

Big Big Train then re-grouped, built their own studio and carried on as an independent band.

In February 2002, the third BBT album, ‘Bard’ was released. At the same time, Steve Hughes rejoined BBT.

A new vocalist, Sean Filkins was recruited to replace original vocalist Martin Read and a fourth album, ‘Gathering Speed’, was released in March 2004. Gathering Speed was a concept album which told the story of a fighter pilot in the summer of 1940.

The Difference Machine album was released in September 2007 and featured guest performances from Pete Trewavas and Nick D’Virgilio.

In 2008, Big Big Train re-released English Boy Wonders (an updated and completed 'director's cut' version of the album which was partly re-recorded by BBT and fully remixed by Rob Aubrey).

In February 2009, Sean Filkins and Steve Hughes left Big Big Train and were replaced by Nick D’Virgilio and David Longdon.

David Longdon was signed to Rondor Music and recorded for Epic records in the 1990’s with his band The Gifthorse. In the final days of The Gifthorse, Longdon was invited to audition as a replacement for Phil Collins as lead singer in Genesis. He worked with Tony Banks, Mike Rutherford and producer Nick Davis from May to November 1996 on recordings that would become the Calling All Stations album. Genesis also worked with Stiltskin vocalist Ray Wilson at the same time and eventually he was preferred over Longdon.

Nick D’Virgilio, also played drums on Calling All Stations.

Longdon’s first solo CD Wild River (2004) featured many musicians collectively known as The Magic Club. In 2008 Martin Orford (IQ) invited Longdon to sing on his swan-song album The Old Road which was also recorded by Rob Aubrey and once again featured Nick D’Virgilio. Shortly afterwards, Longdon joined Big Big Train in time to commence work on The Underfall Yard which was released on December 15th 2009. Guest appearances on The Underfall Yard include Dave Gregory (XTC), Francis Dunnery (It Bites) and Jem Godfrey (Frost*). Big Big Train were also joined on the album by a brass band led by Dave Desmond of the Coldstream Guards band.

A 41 minute EP (Far Skies Deep Time) was released in October 2010 as a companion CD to The Underfall Yard. The EP consists of a cover version of Anthony Phillips' Master of Time, an unreleased song from The Underfall Yard sessions (Fat Billy Shouts Mine) and three new songs including the 17 minute epic The Wide Open Sea which is about Jacques Brel.

Big Big Train's first album, Goodbye to the Age of Steam was re-issued in a remixed version with bonus tracks and new artwork in April 2011.

The band completed a new arrangement and recording of a song called Kingmaker in June 2011. An earlier version of this track appeared on the 1992 demo album, The Infant Hercules. The new recording replaced Master of Time on the import release of Far Skies Deep Time by the Russian label MALS. Kingmaker also features on the download version of the EP.

Dave Gregory joined the band in 2011.

English Electric Part One was released in September 2012 and came second in the Prog magazines readers' poll of album of the year behind Marillion's Sounds That Can't Be Made.

In January 2013, Danny Manners (whose past credits include Louis Philippe and Cathal Coughlan) joined the band as keyboard player and double bassist.

English Electric Part Two was released on 4th March 2013. On both of the English Electric albums, Big Big Train were joined by fellow travellers Andy Tillison (The Tangent), Dave Desmond (Band of the Coldstream Guards) and Rachel Hall (Stackridge).

In July 2013, Big Big Train were nominated in two categories of the Progressive Music Awards(Best Album and Breakthrough Act). The band went on to win the Breakthrough category at the award ceremony which was held at Kew Gardens on September 2nd 2013.

A double CD, English Electric Full Power was released in September 2013, combining Parts One and Parts Two of English Electric with four new tracks and featuring a 96 page booklet. Alongside Full Power, the Make Some Noise EP was also released featuring the four new tracks.

A live DVD is planned in 2014, to be filmed at Real World studios.

An album entitled Station Masters is also due for release in 2014. Station Masters will be a 3CD retrospective and will include new recordings of tracks from all of the band's releases.

This biography was provided by the artist or their representative.

Big Big Train have released eight albums including the critically acclaimed CD's English Electric Part One(2012), English Electric Part Two (2013) and The Underfall Yard (2009). An extended length EP, Far Skies Deep Time, was also released in 2010.

Big Big Train is based in England and the band’s line-up is:

Andy Poole / Danny Manners / Dave Gregory / David Longdon / Nick D’Virgilio / Greg Spawton

Big Big Train was formed in 1990 by Andy Poole and Greg Spawton.

In 1991, Andy and Greg were joined by Ian Cooper (keyboards), Steve Hughes (drums) and vocalist Martin Read. A demo cassette tape of the band’s first songs was released in October 1991 and was followed by Big Big Train’s first live performances. The demo tape ‘From the River to the Sea’was re-recorded and released as a self-financed demo CD in May 1992, following which BBT played some higher profile gigs in England.

In January 1993, a second demo tape, ‘The Infant Hercules’ was released and the band then spent the next six months writing the music for its first album,‘Goodbye to the Age of Steam’. This was recorded in a two week period in July 1993. Soon afterwards, BBT signed to the progressive rock label GEP where they became label mates of IQ.

Ian Cooper left the band in early 1995 and live performances were put on hold while a replacement was sought and a new album was written.

Recording of BBT's second album commenced in July of 1995 (with Greg filling in on keyboards) and continued, sporadically, until completion 18 months later. During the sessions, a new keyboard player, Tony Müller was recruited. Some of the songs from the new album were debuted at the band’s only show from this period at the Astoria, London. ‘English Boy Wonders’ was finally released in autumn 1997, although in an incomplete state as the band had run out of money to finish the album.

Steve Hughes left Big Big Train in September 1998 and went on to join The Enid. He was replaced by Pete Hibbit. After disappointing sales of English Boy Wonders, the band were dropped by their record label, GEP.

Big Big Train then re-grouped, built their own studio and carried on as an independent band.

In February 2002, the third BBT album, ‘Bard’ was released. At the same time, Steve Hughes rejoined BBT.

A new vocalist, Sean Filkins was recruited to replace original vocalist Martin Read and a fourth album, ‘Gathering Speed’, was released in March 2004. Gathering Speed was a concept album which told the story of a fighter pilot in the summer of 1940.

The Difference Machine album was released in September 2007 and featured guest performances from Pete Trewavas and Nick D’Virgilio.

In 2008, Big Big Train re-released English Boy Wonders (an updated and completed 'director's cut' version of the album which was partly re-recorded by BBT and fully remixed by Rob Aubrey).

In February 2009, Sean Filkins and Steve Hughes left Big Big Train and were replaced by Nick D’Virgilio and David Longdon.

David Longdon was signed to Rondor Music and recorded for Epic records in the 1990’s with his band The Gifthorse. In the final days of The Gifthorse, Longdon was invited to audition as a replacement for Phil Collins as lead singer in Genesis. He worked with Tony Banks, Mike Rutherford and producer Nick Davis from May to November 1996 on recordings that would become the Calling All Stations album. Genesis also worked with Stiltskin vocalist Ray Wilson at the same time and eventually he was preferred over Longdon.

Nick D’Virgilio, also played drums on Calling All Stations.

Longdon’s first solo CD Wild River (2004) featured many musicians collectively known as The Magic Club. In 2008 Martin Orford (IQ) invited Longdon to sing on his swan-song album The Old Road which was also recorded by Rob Aubrey and once again featured Nick D’Virgilio. Shortly afterwards, Longdon joined Big Big Train in time to commence work on The Underfall Yard which was released on December 15th 2009. Guest appearances on The Underfall Yard include Dave Gregory (XTC), Francis Dunnery (It Bites) and Jem Godfrey (Frost*). Big Big Train were also joined on the album by a brass band led by Dave Desmond of the Coldstream Guards band.

A 41 minute EP (Far Skies Deep Time) was released in October 2010 as a companion CD to The Underfall Yard. The EP consists of a cover version of Anthony Phillips' Master of Time, an unreleased song from The Underfall Yard sessions (Fat Billy Shouts Mine) and three new songs including the 17 minute epic The Wide Open Sea which is about Jacques Brel.

Big Big Train's first album, Goodbye to the Age of Steam was re-issued in a remixed version with bonus tracks and new artwork in April 2011.

The band completed a new arrangement and recording of a song called Kingmaker in June 2011. An earlier version of this track appeared on the 1992 demo album, The Infant Hercules. The new recording replaced Master of Time on the import release of Far Skies Deep Time by the Russian label MALS. Kingmaker also features on the download version of the EP.

Dave Gregory joined the band in 2011.

English Electric Part One was released in September 2012 and came second in the Prog magazines readers' poll of album of the year behind Marillion's Sounds That Can't Be Made.

In January 2013, Danny Manners (whose past credits include Louis Philippe and Cathal Coughlan) joined the band as keyboard player and double bassist.

English Electric Part Two was released on 4th March 2013. On both of the English Electric albums, Big Big Train were joined by fellow travellers Andy Tillison (The Tangent), Dave Desmond (Band of the Coldstream Guards) and Rachel Hall (Stackridge).

In July 2013, Big Big Train were nominated in two categories of the Progressive Music Awards(Best Album and Breakthrough Act). The band went on to win the Breakthrough category at the award ceremony which was held at Kew Gardens on September 2nd 2013.

A double CD, English Electric Full Power was released in September 2013, combining Parts One and Parts Two of English Electric with four new tracks and featuring a 96 page booklet. Alongside Full Power, the Make Some Noise EP was also released featuring the four new tracks.

A live DVD is planned in 2014, to be filmed at Real World studios.

An album entitled Station Masters is also due for release in 2014. Station Masters will be a 3CD retrospective and will include new recordings of tracks from all of the band's releases.

This biography was provided by the artist or their representative.

Big Big Train have released eight albums including the critically acclaimed CD's English Electric Part One(2012), English Electric Part Two (2013) and The Underfall Yard (2009). An extended length EP, Far Skies Deep Time, was also released in 2010.

Big Big Train is based in England and the band’s line-up is:

Andy Poole / Danny Manners / Dave Gregory / David Longdon / Nick D’Virgilio / Greg Spawton

Big Big Train was formed in 1990 by Andy Poole and Greg Spawton.

In 1991, Andy and Greg were joined by Ian Cooper (keyboards), Steve Hughes (drums) and vocalist Martin Read. A demo cassette tape of the band’s first songs was released in October 1991 and was followed by Big Big Train’s first live performances. The demo tape ‘From the River to the Sea’was re-recorded and released as a self-financed demo CD in May 1992, following which BBT played some higher profile gigs in England.

In January 1993, a second demo tape, ‘The Infant Hercules’ was released and the band then spent the next six months writing the music for its first album,‘Goodbye to the Age of Steam’. This was recorded in a two week period in July 1993. Soon afterwards, BBT signed to the progressive rock label GEP where they became label mates of IQ.

Ian Cooper left the band in early 1995 and live performances were put on hold while a replacement was sought and a new album was written.

Recording of BBT's second album commenced in July of 1995 (with Greg filling in on keyboards) and continued, sporadically, until completion 18 months later. During the sessions, a new keyboard player, Tony Müller was recruited. Some of the songs from the new album were debuted at the band’s only show from this period at the Astoria, London. ‘English Boy Wonders’ was finally released in autumn 1997, although in an incomplete state as the band had run out of money to finish the album.

Steve Hughes left Big Big Train in September 1998 and went on to join The Enid. He was replaced by Pete Hibbit. After disappointing sales of English Boy Wonders, the band were dropped by their record label, GEP.

Big Big Train then re-grouped, built their own studio and carried on as an independent band.

In February 2002, the third BBT album, ‘Bard’ was released. At the same time, Steve Hughes rejoined BBT.

A new vocalist, Sean Filkins was recruited to replace original vocalist Martin Read and a fourth album, ‘Gathering Speed’, was released in March 2004. Gathering Speed was a concept album which told the story of a fighter pilot in the summer of 1940.

The Difference Machine album was released in September 2007 and featured guest performances from Pete Trewavas and Nick D’Virgilio.

In 2008, Big Big Train re-released English Boy Wonders (an updated and completed 'director's cut' version of the album which was partly re-recorded by BBT and fully remixed by Rob Aubrey).

In February 2009, Sean Filkins and Steve Hughes left Big Big Train and were replaced by Nick D’Virgilio and David Longdon.

David Longdon was signed to Rondor Music and recorded for Epic records in the 1990’s with his band The Gifthorse. In the final days of The Gifthorse, Longdon was invited to audition as a replacement for Phil Collins as lead singer in Genesis. He worked with Tony Banks, Mike Rutherford and producer Nick Davis from May to November 1996 on recordings that would become the Calling All Stations album. Genesis also worked with Stiltskin vocalist Ray Wilson at the same time and eventually he was preferred over Longdon.

Nick D’Virgilio, also played drums on Calling All Stations.

Longdon’s first solo CD Wild River (2004) featured many musicians collectively known as The Magic Club. In 2008 Martin Orford (IQ) invited Longdon to sing on his swan-song album The Old Road which was also recorded by Rob Aubrey and once again featured Nick D’Virgilio. Shortly afterwards, Longdon joined Big Big Train in time to commence work on The Underfall Yard which was released on December 15th 2009. Guest appearances on The Underfall Yard include Dave Gregory (XTC), Francis Dunnery (It Bites) and Jem Godfrey (Frost*). Big Big Train were also joined on the album by a brass band led by Dave Desmond of the Coldstream Guards band.

A 41 minute EP (Far Skies Deep Time) was released in October 2010 as a companion CD to The Underfall Yard. The EP consists of a cover version of Anthony Phillips' Master of Time, an unreleased song from The Underfall Yard sessions (Fat Billy Shouts Mine) and three new songs including the 17 minute epic The Wide Open Sea which is about Jacques Brel.

Big Big Train's first album, Goodbye to the Age of Steam was re-issued in a remixed version with bonus tracks and new artwork in April 2011.

The band completed a new arrangement and recording of a song called Kingmaker in June 2011. An earlier version of this track appeared on the 1992 demo album, The Infant Hercules. The new recording replaced Master of Time on the import release of Far Skies Deep Time by the Russian label MALS. Kingmaker also features on the download version of the EP.

Dave Gregory joined the band in 2011.

English Electric Part One was released in September 2012 and came second in the Prog magazines readers' poll of album of the year behind Marillion's Sounds That Can't Be Made.

In January 2013, Danny Manners (whose past credits include Louis Philippe and Cathal Coughlan) joined the band as keyboard player and double bassist.

English Electric Part Two was released on 4th March 2013. On both of the English Electric albums, Big Big Train were joined by fellow travellers Andy Tillison (The Tangent), Dave Desmond (Band of the Coldstream Guards) and Rachel Hall (Stackridge).

In July 2013, Big Big Train were nominated in two categories of the Progressive Music Awards(Best Album and Breakthrough Act). The band went on to win the Breakthrough category at the award ceremony which was held at Kew Gardens on September 2nd 2013.

A double CD, English Electric Full Power was released in September 2013, combining Parts One and Parts Two of English Electric with four new tracks and featuring a 96 page booklet. Alongside Full Power, the Make Some Noise EP was also released featuring the four new tracks.

A live DVD is planned in 2014, to be filmed at Real World studios.

An album entitled Station Masters is also due for release in 2014. Station Masters will be a 3CD retrospective and will include new recordings of tracks from all of the band's releases.

This biography was provided by the artist or their representative.

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