Intro: 1975 – 1978
1975 - The original band members, Vi Subversa, Richard Famous, Lance d’Boyle and Bella Donna, first wrote and performed music for ‘The Body Show’, an experimental, semi-improvised theatre production. The show played at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 1975. Reviewed in The Scotsman as ‘worse than two hours of toothache’, it garnered full houses and a particular reputation. Vi Subversa celebrated her 40th birthday by singing in public for the first time ever, and a legend was born.
1976 - Back in Brighton through 1976, the band played on, under various names and large, shifting personnel. After hearing the demos for what became the Buzzcocks Spiral Scratch, and seeing the Pistols, Clash and the Buzzcocks at the Screen on the Green, the music took a more energetic turn!
1977 - In early 1977 the band stabilised as Vi, Richard, Lance and Bella and, in need of a permanent rehearsal space, they were instrumental in opening up and running the legendary ‘Vault’, the cellars under the Brighton Resources Centre. Within weeks it became Brightons’ only punk venue and rehearsal space, in use seven nights a week. The band played their first gig as Poison Girls at the Vault, March 17th 1977.
August 1977 and the band move lock, stock and barrel to Burleigh House just outside Epping, a semi derelict licenced squat due to be demolished for the then proposed M25. The move was a conscious decision to work on Poison Girls full time, and late 1977 saw the first bass player change as Bella Donna left to travel to India. Scotty Boy Barker replaced her.
1978 - First 4 track studio recordings in May 1978. Gigging regularly. Set up Xntrix Records. Made contact with Crass, who by chance lived 4 miles away, and through them, were introduced to Bernhardt Rebours. He took up bass duties the day before the recording of Piano Lessons/ Closed Shop on 11th October at Spaceward Studios in Cambridge.