Released in August 1979 as FAC 11, English Black Boys is the only release by Manchester based X-O-Dus.
A press release from the time, taken from http://cerysmaticfactory.info/index.php
EXODUS, a Manchester reggae band, initially formed in mid '75; the founder members being Honey, Leddy, Trevor Bell, and shortly after, Dave Reid. The purpose of the band was to play the kind of music which the band themselves wanted to hear and not what was being played by others at that time. Their aim was to make reggae progress. A new, young sound which could be understood and enjoyed by black and white alike.
After 18 month's rehearsal, during which various other musicians passed through the band, the line-up stabilised and the band were ready to perform in public. The first gig was the Squat in Manchester in early '77. After a few gigs, the people in the area alise that something new and different',was happening on scene, and EXODUS quickly became known as the best band of their type. Since then, the band have not looked back. The line-up changed a couple of times but finally gelled perfectly in early '78 original members were joined by Ricky Jones, Johnny Caton and Gayle Reid
The line-up was now:
Johnny......Keyboards & Vocals.
Honey.......Lead vocals & Presence
In early '79 the band changed their management and recorded a 4-song demo tape at Cargo studios in Rochdale which was heard by Tony Wilson who run's Manchester's Factory Records label. The song "English Black Boys" made sufficient impact on Tony that the band were offered a deal for a single almost immediately, making X:O:DUS the first reggae band to sign to a leading independent label.
It was decided that the single should be a 12", comprising "English Black Boys" as the A-Side, and a new song, "See Them A Come" as the B-Side. Factory engaged Dennis Bovell to produce the single and in May '79 the band returned to Cargo to begin work.
Various problems delayed the release of the single, but when it eventually hit the shops at the end of April '80, it received favourable reviews in Sounds, Melody Maker and N.M.E..
Black Echoes and N.M.E. did live reviews and along with placings in the Independant Charts in N.M.E. and Sounds, and the U.K. Reggae charts in Melody Maker, the band had begun to get some national recognition.
The same of the band ha been changed from EXODUS to X:O:DUS to avoid any confusion with a small London roots reggae band of the same name.
X:O:DUS have successfully toured Scotland on two occasions (being the first reggae band to tour the Highlands) and are building up a strong Scottish following. They return to Scotland for a two-week tour in September '80. The few London gigs by X:O:DUS have been at; Queen Mary's College, The Moonlight Club and the Clarendon Hotel-the band expect to do more in the near future. In the past couple of months the band have been joined by Herbie on Sax., making the line-up an 8-piece.
X.O.DUS have recently dropped their female vocalist, as they do not feel that harmony suits the type of music which they are currently playing.
ARTEFACT ORIGINALLY UPLOADED BYAbigail