Profile: Vent 414 - Indie's 1st 'Supergroup' ?

Of recent weeks in my frequent trawling around the dusty corners of the Internet looking for music both new and old, there's been a few instances where something I remember from years back simply cannot be found for neither love nor money to buy and download in digital format.

Leaving aside the issue of 'free' downloading for now, 'Option 2' has finally been reached and I have submitted to the very 20th century practice of buying those shiny circular things called CDs - but in order to keep things in a modern, online kind of way, acquired via Amazon of course.

But I digress, top of my list of music to be found in one way or another was the only released album by Vent 414 - which was back in 1996. Last week my letterbox was made happy by the arrival of one of the aforementioned shiny round things, which was promptly burned to mp3 and uploaded for perusal on Grooveshark.

And now for the History Lesson: Vent 414 were formed when Miles Hunt split from The Wonder Stuff and teamed up with Morgan Nicholls, the utterly exceptional bass player from the Senseless Things and Pete Howard, powerhouse drummer from EAT and at times, The Clash. As a three-piece, the only album was recorded at Abbey Road with Steve Albini at the desk. Just to ratchet up the uber-alt/indie credentials, live gigs would see the band getting filled out with the guitarwork of Billy Duffy from The Cult... Yes, Ladles and Gentlespoons, back in '96 it honestly couldn't get much better than that.

My opinion after a week of having it stuck on repeat? Much of the album really puts me in mind of Foo Fighters, or Queens of the Stone Age but oddly, the Foo's how they sound now, not how they sounded back in 1996... The only thing that lets it down slightly is the mix levels, Nicholls is an absolutely genius bassplayer - why is he not up higher in the mix?

Sadly, Vent 414 went their separate ways before finishing off a second album the following year (although a 'demo' version is available to download via The Stuffies Room 512 legacy website). Which was a shame to be honest - buy it's what happens I guess. But onwards! .... Next on the list is 'We Know Where You Live' - another Wonder Stuff and EAT joint project - watch this space.