Ordinary Psycho: Calling David Gulvin

IMG_0005In the 1990s, I was very active on the now basically defunct website/chatgroup Within Without: A Website Dedicated to the Music of Mark Hollis and Talk Talk.

Dane Henrik Aakjaer founded and ran it, and he did so with a certain grace.  I fondly remember the many discussions we had there about everything post-rock and post-prog (at least what would be called these things).

Lee Harris, Talk Talk’s drummer, even consented to an interview and a chat.  In those days, it was still rare for musicians to communicate so openly with fans on the internet.

In the summer of 1998, Brit David Gulvin posted an offer to all readers and participants of Within Without:

NameDavid Gulvin
Referred by: Just Surfed On In!
From: UK
Time: 1998-06-09 12:49:18
Comments: I just thought I’d communicate a word to you about ORDINARY PSYCHO, who with the very kind permission of Henrik who runs this site, have a free promo CD offer tagged to this site. Thanks to everyone who have replied so far, I’ve had well over 80 responses so keep them coming. Sorry for not always being able to reply directly to your e-mails, this is because my e-mail still runs on CCMAIL so each internet reply has to be set up individually. Soon I will set up an email mailing list to keep you updated. A website of their own is being planned now. I’d dearly appreciate all of you who have received CD’s to e-mail me your response, even if you don’t like OP (God forbid!) Piggybacking comparative artists on the web is part of the early promotion for OP so you guys with CD’s are some of the earliest fans. I suggest you hang on to them, and tell your friends now, so that they believe you in a few years time when you say, “I was into OP years ago, when they first started on the Talk Talk Web!” Any suggestions like the one about Roger Waters most welcome. Thanks again to all TT fans supporting OP.

I was still unmarried and living in Montana.  I sent Gulvin my address, not expecting much.  Happily (still a great feeling), a package arrived in the mail.  He’d sent me a copy of his EP, “Ordinary Psycho,” a mixing of three different parts of a forthcoming album: Private Island; Excerpts; and Love By Sin.

I tried to follow the band’s progress, but they never made much of a splash in America, and I lost track of them.  Over the last several years, I’ve tried to find out what happened.  It appears from what little I can find online that they made one album and disappeared.

This EP, which seemed so unexpected in 1998, has been a little treasure of mine for fifteen years.  I’m sorry that Gulvin seems to have gone underground, as so much of the 20 minutes I’ve had the privilege of hearing is quite stunning.  It would fit rather nicely (and, I guess, does) in the larger world of third wave prog.

So, David, if you’re out there, please know that you’ve made one soul a very happy one for a decade and a half.  And, all simply a gift that arrived unexpectedly one day at the foot of Mount Helena.

Thank you.


11 thoughts on “Ordinary Psycho: Calling David Gulvin

  1. Tony Gulvin

    Hi Brad
    Not David but Tony…I never respond to these things but just found this and couldn’t resist as you were so honest and cool about how you liked the CD trailer and for so long. So if you want I’ll send you a album should you want one? I think I have a few copies of Vol 2 kicking about.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tony! How nice of you to write. Yes, I would love it. Our email here is: progarchy@gmail.com. Physical address is:
      Progarchy/Brad Birzer
      6 West Montgomery
      Hillsdale MI 49242

      I’m very happy to pay for the cd and shipping. I will certainly write an article about it. Also, I don’t want to impinge on your time–but we’d be glad to know of any future music plans. Yours, Brad (ed.)


  2. Pingback: Fighting Generation Bland: The Short Career of Ordinary Psycho | Progarchy: Pointing toward Proghalla

  3. Hello, I see the David Gulvin message on Within Without, and I have one copy of this promo CD ! Since ORDINARY PSYCHO is one of my fave band !! I have buy all CD i can find.. For me only “Jack The Ripper” band made this kind of music ! Thanks now I know I’m not alone !


  4. I ordered the sampler when it was offered, loved what I heard, jumped all over it – contacting David and offering to promote the album in the US (not that I had any experience). I even met up with David and Tony during a trip to England. Very nice guys. I then promptly dropped the ball, getting distracted and doing nothing to help them. I really regret failing to follow through.



Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s