St Helens Musicians Collective – Piranhas In The Canal


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St Helens Music Collective - Piranhas In The Canal Cover
St Helens Music Collective – Piranhas In The Canal Cover

St Helens Musicians Collective

Piranhas In The Canal – Various Artists

Label: Now Music (re-issue) Cat No: NM 1016

A compilation tape released in the 1980’s, of local bands in St Helens, Merseyside.


a1 Woodjammers – What Shall We Do Today?
a2 Magic Roundabout – Talk About You
a3 In Too Deep – Why Did She Leave No Message?
a4 Raven Rocker – Honey Don’t
a5 Unholy Row – Vegeburger
a6 The Underground – My Love
b1 Gnarl – Sleepwalker
b2 The Watchmen – Enthusiasm
b3 Out Of England – What Do You Do?
b4 Elllis O’Neil – My Hands
b5 Jo Publik – Brother Wilde

“Why ‘Piranhas in the Canal’? There is a local legend of a tank full of tropical fish dumped in the canal. Surprisingly they survived and then thrived, sustained by an outflow of warm water from the glassworks. In the murky waters of the music business, the Collective aims to be that outflow.”


“It was recorded at the Citadel live through the mixing desk. And, true as well, it is a wee bit cringe-worthy.” – Mark Roulston

“I was the singer/bass player of In Too Deep, track 3. I was 14 years old when we did this. We recorded the song at Dead Fly (St Helens) with Bun (Poisoned Electick Head) handling the recording!!! And I had to borrow his bass as mine wouldn’t stay in tune!!! Great days!” – austerymn

“I was the lead guitarist on the last track. This too was recorded by Bun, but I think we did it through the mixing desk at The Citadel (St Helens) rather than Dead Fly. Too long ago to remember! They didn’t get the track name right though – it was actually called “A Bleeding Sky” and the lyrics were still very early, hence the repetition. I find it quite cringe-worthy to be honest, but we didn’t manage to capture much else onto tape.” – Phil Prescott

The Woodjammers

The Woodjammers ‘What Shall We Do Today?’ is a local favourite on the album and many people have raved about the track and claim how much they love it.

A St Helens source said the following about The Woodjammers:

“They were a special needs group (autism, downs syndrome) and played a giant marimba. Sounded like ‘Swordfishtrombone’ era, Tom Waits. I did a tour with them on keyboards. Their possibly only recorded output is ‘What shall we do today?’ on the cassette release ‘Piranhas in the Canal’, a St Helens band compilation.

“Proper Dadaism, you’d arrive somewhere and a guy would say “you can’t leave that there, it’s blocking the fire exit”. They’d all burst into tears and we’d have to cancel the show. They’d walk off mid-song, or start fighting with the mallets.”

Cat No: NM 1016

Re-issue released: 27th March 2018


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