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Formed in Portsmouth, UK  by the brother and sister duo of Jim Shaw (multi-instrumentalist) and Alison Shaw  (vocalist, bassist), Cranes first appeared in 1986 with ‘Fuse’, a self-released and now highly sought-after cassette album.

Their debut on vinyl ‘Self-Non-Self’  followed in 1989, catching the attention of legendary DJ John Peel, who invited them to record two sessions for his BBC show in 1989 and 1990. Cranes Peel Sessions 1989-1990 was released for the first time in 2023. Mark Francombe (quitarist, keyboardist) and Matt Cope (guitarist) joined to form the line up which would go on to record five albums for Dedicated.

Cranes toured extensively with The Cure in 1992 and Slowdive in 1993. Their much-loved albums ‘Wings of Joy’ (1991), ‘Forever’ (1993), ‘Loved’ (1994), ‘La Tragédie d’Oreste et Électre’ (1996) and ‘Population Four’ (1997) followed.

After a brief hiatus in the late nineties Cranes re-emerged in 2001 with their own label Dadaphonic to release a series of albums including ‘Future Songs’ and ‘Particles and Waves’, featuring a more electronic, ambient sound. Many Cranes songs have appeared in films, TV dramas and documentaries, both in UK and America.

“Listening back to the Cranes’ [..] career, it’s clear that this is some of the strongest and most powerfully imaginative music to have emerged from Britain in recent times… They bring experimental rock close to classical grandeur – and by this year’s glittering ‘Breeze’, you can hear a uniquely damaged pop band at work”
– Victoria Segal (1997)

“One of the most unusually compelling bands to ever come from the UK.” – Ned Ragget (2023)



Fuse (re-issue)
John Peel Sessions 1989 - 1990
Particles & Waves
Future Songs