and the Cliches (M&TC) originated in1978 at Vancouver, Canada.
Their first group of songs was recorded
and engineered by Darren Brisker at Psi Chord Studios and became
the basis for the band’s 1979 debut album “How Cliché
can you Get”(Noh Records). Bassist Elmar Spanier, and drummers
Nels Guloien and Robert Hake joined Maurice, Gary and Paul. The
additional recording was completed at Total Sounds Studios. Produced
by M&TC and the Jamaican engineer from the Rolling Stones’
“Goat’s Head Soup” album; Carlton Lee.
This first record demonstrated the bands' songwriting ability and
garnered airplay for the single “Top Forty”. M&TC’s
blend of musical styles, cinematic imagery and sardonic wit was
off to a flying start.
became favorites on the thriving Vancouver alternative music scene.
Even in these early days there always an element of the unexpected
at their shows, many of which became elaborate events incorporating
multi media, theatrical sets, props and actors. They also made frequent
cameo appearances as themselves in the ongoing avant-garde theatre
production, “the West End”, a live weekly improvisational
The next record was the 1980 EP called “Veronika” (Noh
Recorded at Blue Wave Studios with a new line up including Jay Johnson,
(Bonus Boys), on drums. Appearances on numerous CBC TV & Radio
programs brought the band to national attention. College radio airplay
provided the band with a solid touring and concert audience.
Their live show still occasioned the use of anything from bagpipers
to Maurice riding his motorcycle onstage, but following the murder
of John Lennon, onstage M&TC would always wear black.
Maurice’s aborted bid for Mayor of Vancouver, M&TC were
signed to LA based RMS/Applause Records by record executive Lorne
Saifer and the album “C’est La Vie” was released
internationally in 1983. Bassist Muir (Payolas), joined the band
for these recordings. Recorded at Vancouver’s legendary Mushroom
Studios and produced by Jamie Bowers & M&TC.
single Soft Core charted on the Billboard Top 100, and was in heavy
rotation on alternative playlists and college radio across the USA.
International response in the UK and Europe, although hampered by
distribution problems, was very enthusiastic. To follow up on the
success of “Soft Core”, Maurice Paul and Gary crossed
the border and relocated in Seattle attracting two new members;
bassist Wayne Clack (the Heats) and drummer Mike Alexisch. In this
powerhouse format, M&TC toured the Western United States &
Canada to rave reviews. In September 1984, under the new management
of Ken Deans, M&TC moved to Los Angeles.
played all the Hollywood hotspots of the period, The Hollywood Palace
(Avalon) both as a headliner and supporting such acts as Nick Cave
and the Bad Seeds and the Sisters of Mercy. They were regulars and
top of the bill at all the “A” List venues: Madame Wong’s
(East & West), Club Lingerie, The Music Machine, The Whisky
a Go-Go, The Central (Viper Room), FM Station, Gazzari’s,
the Palomino. Their popularity as a live act was legendary.
M&TC songs, (Skyline, Beautiful Girls, ) are featured on the
soundtrack to the Fred Weintraub/ MGM 1985 teen flick: “The
Management changes again, Kelly Curtis (pre-Pearl Jam) in conjunction,
with Larry Johnson of Niceman Merchandising and Danny O’Donovan
(Sinatra) took over the business reins from Ken Deans. M&TC
next record was now to be produced by Nancy Wilson, (Heart), and
recorded at the old Music Grinder Studio on Melrose Ave by Robert
Feist (Ravenswork). This album although completed was not released
at the time.
1986 M&TC performed this new material at their own sold-out
show at the famous Roxy on Sunset Strip. It was a hallmark M&TC
event, dramatic and visually stunning with an expanded on stage
line-up, but it was also their last major engagement. Maurice and
the Cliches disbanded in early 1987.
the intervening years M&TC music still receives airplay and
they are now counted among the Best of the 80’s. Fans old
& new continue to show interest in the band and in Jan. 2005“Soft
Core” was re-released on a compilation disk (Rare & Remixed
Series Retroactive Vol.3/HiBias/Warners).
2006 the first release of new material from M&TC in 20 years
became available with their CD called "Flogging a Dead Horse".
It's a combination of Greatest Hits and previously unreleased songs.
All digitally re-mastered and together on one CD. Maurice, Paul
and Gary contributed from their personal archives and the resulting
collection shows the band from some of their earliest releases to
songs recorded at the last official M&TC sessions. Click
here for ordering info