Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie

On this day in 1964, Bobby Gillespie, founder of the innovative

techno/rock band Primal Scream and former drummer for the Jesus and Mary

Chain, was born in Scotland.

Gillespie formed Primal Scream soon after joining Jesus and Mary Chain in 1984. Scream's debut album, Sonic Flower Groove, didn't come out until 1987, following Gillespie's departure from JAMC and the addition to Scream of guitarists Andrew Innes and Robert Young. The album featured

guitar-based, melodic pop/rock sung by Gillespie. Primal Scream's

eponymous 1989 follow-up, however, contained rougher rock influenced

by the Rolling Stones, the Stooges and the New York Dolls. By 1990, the

band had teamed with producer Andy Weatherall to create atmospheric dance

rock such as the U.K. top-20 hit "Loaded," a remix of Primal Scream's

earlier song, "I'm Losing More Than I'll Ever Have."

Primal Scream's 1991 album, Screamadelica, was in this dance vein

and proved to be a milestone in English pop music. Produced by

Weatherall and Hugo Nicholson, the album also contained tracks cut with

the help of the Orb and Jimmy Miller, producer of such Stones classics

as Sticky Fingers and Exile on Main Street.

Screamadelica was critically hailed, made the U.K. top 10 and proved that techno could be embraced by the mainstream.

Primal Scream's next release, 1994's Give Out, But Don't Give Up, was a detour, finding the band doing bluesy rock a la

the Stones. While Primal Scream fans bought the album, it didn't sell

as much as the band's previous platters and it displeased most critics.

Primal Scream returned to dance music for the dark title track (RealAudio excerpt) to the

1996 heroin movie "Trainspotting." In 1997, the band returned with

Vanishing Point, which took them further into electronica. "We

go into the studio and experiment every day with sounds," Gillespie said

around the time the album was issued. Although Vanishing Point

also had elements of psychedelia and punk, Gillespie indicated that in the future the band might experiment even further with its sound. He

discussed tracks for an upcoming release that the band was working on

with contributions from Jaki Leibezeit, the drummer of German

avant-garde electronica group Can, and My Bloody Valentine's Kevin

Shields.

Soon after the release of Vanishing Point, Primal

Scream issued -- in the U.K. only -- Echo Dek, a track-for-track dub

meltdown of the previous album, with the exception of the single "Burning Wheel," by dub master Adrian Sherwood. Having reached the peak of their

innovative powers with Vanishing Point, Primal Scream have left

their fans anxiously awaiting their next album to see what musical path

the band will take.

Other birthdays: Kris Kristofferson, 62; Peter Asher (Peter and Gordon), 54; Howard Kaylan (Turtles), 51; Todd Rundgren (Utopia), 50;

Alan Osmond (Osmonds), 49; Derek Forbes (Simple Minds), 42; Green

Gartside (Scritti Politti), 42; Garry Gary Beers (INXS), 41; Alan

Alizojvodic (Cowboy Junkies), 39; Stephen Vaughn (PJ Harvey), 36;

Michael James Edwards (Jesus Jones), 34; and Afrika Baby Bambaataa (Jungle Brothers), 28.