(c’91 – present) Pete Cole has a fascination with Farnborough and music and embarked on a multi-year pet project that “big ups” the local music scene. Mick Magic mastered a few of these compilations (with his own Magic Moments at Twilight Time appearing on three of them) and some were on the Music & Elsewhere label too. Farnborough Groove is a non-profit project wit the goal of helping and promoting up and coming unsigned and unknown local bands and artists. These compilations provide a great window on our local scene at the time:
Pete Cole gathered together 21 tracks from 21 bands from Farnborough, Aldershot and Camberley – with the odd group from Reading, but lets not hold that against him – for the first of the Farnborough Groove compilation series: ‘The Farnborough Groove, Vol.1’, releasing the compilation cassette in 1991. It retailed for the princely sum of £2.00, or £2.25 if you wanted Pete Cole to send it to you.
A number of bands returned for ‘Son of Farnborough Groove, Vol.2’ including Blue Velvet, Frayed Edge, Patrick James, Sad Town, Phobia, Who Moved The Ground?, and The Flowers of Sacrifice, along with 15 new bands to the series. Released in 1992, Cole was forced to increase the price of the compilation cassette to £2.50.
Pete Cole took on a side project shortly after Vol.2 hit the streets with the ‘Never Heard of ‘Em’ compilation released in early 1993. This provided Blue Velvet, Phobia, and Who Moved The Ground? their third outings on a Farnborough Groove Music compilation. A second ‘Never Heard of ‘Em’ volume was planned but never came to fruition.
Late 1993’s ‘Return of Farnborough Groove, Vol.3’ cassette compilation introduced groovers to Waterbratz, Metropolis, Rachel Papers, Salt Tank, Backlash, Girls on Dextrose, Basket Weavers, Peachrazor, and Overspill.
‘Revenge of Farnborough Groove, Vol.4’ arrived in 1994 with only six of the 20 bands having appear on a Groove before. This heavy dose of newbies consisted of Redefining Beautiful, Mrs East, Cow, Billy Liberator, Shine, David Paul, Summersault, Scutters, Babe Rainbow, Strangeworld, Boogiemen, Episode 4, Chase, and Stone Circle.
1995’s ‘Farnborough Groove Strikes Back!, Vol.5’ carried 22 tracks. Of these 17 were new bands to the Groove: Skipper, The Perfect Circles, Cuckooland, The Four Marys, Headcopter, Bloom, Crazyface, Little Stabs of Happiness, Headnoise, Epicureans, The Rileys, Sideways, JC Regulator, Twister, Buzzwagon, Toys in the Attic, Doo the Moog, Elephant Talk and Bash.
The release of ‘Best Farnborough Groove in the World – Ever!, Vol.6’ upped the track count again, to 26, with over half from bands new to the growing compilation: Breaker, Pallet, Eat the Sofa, Dry Riser, Caged, My Revolution, Entropy, Superbia, Fly Agaruic, Clunge, The Innocents, Rehab, Pin, Silverspere, The Big Collapse, and Distrubing Guests. This last band were represented by their track ‘Rubberhead’, Pete Cole’s nickname in some circles.
‘Farnborough Groove Vol.7 (Geography Sucks)’ followed the now annual release cyclein 1997. Mastered by Ade Lunn at Lunar Recording Studios, Cranleigh, 18 ‘new’ bands / artists got into the groove: Inter, Kilter, Eastwood. Twister, Edna, Vibracore, Dick Savage, Hobbes, Avalanche, Snideline, Ten Feet High, Penfold, Nixon, Who Shot Mr. Burns?, Choker, Concrete Dog, Hobie, and Downwood. The West End Centre, Aldershot was the venue for Vol. 7’s Launch Night on 20 September 1997 and featured Kilter.
After a years gap 1999 bought us the last of the cassette based Farnborough Grooves compilations, with ‘The Farnbourgh Groove, Vol.8’
‘The Farnborough Groove, Vol. 9’ in 2001 was the first of CD with a used copy recently listed on Amazon for £40.00!
With artwork by Karina Fraser and mastering by Julian Johnson, 2004’s ‘Farnborough Groove, Vol. 10’ was the last of the original series.
The Best of Farnborough Groove Vol. 1-10, released in late 2015 – celebrating 15 years of grooving – carried 31 of Pete Cole’s favorite songs, filling 1 hour and 57 minutes.
Pete Cole followed this with Farnborough Groove Vol.11 in 2018
Then, out of ‘Lockdown’ came Farnborough Groove Vol.12; to mark the series’ 30th anniversary on 1 April 2021. This featured a number of old favorites with new sounds and a selection of new bands.