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Mystery Guests

New Wave Punk

Excerpt from Shots in the Dark: A Classic 1981 Album Featuring Acts Like The Magnetics by Peter Timmis:

“Another band contributing two tracks to 'Shots In The Dark' were Mystery Guests who provided the album's poppiest moments with “So Misunderstood” and “Take A Look At Yourself”. At the time the band featured Carrie Watt (vocals), Chris Bird (vocals and bass), Colin Andrews (lead guitar), Rick Kirby (rhythm guitar), Tim Hicks (keyboards) and the fantastically named Mark Godbeer (drums). Cross Rhythms tracked down Mark, now a minister at Counterslip Baptist Church in Bristol, and asked, who were the Mystery Guests? “At the time I joined the band was called Transformation, I think this was around 1979-1980,” explained the former sticksman. “We would gig mainly in church halls for youth events, though I'm sure we did play a couple of pubs. I remember playing a teacher training college in Bristol as support to a band called Fatal Charm, who'd had a record in the charts called 'Christine'. After the album we also played in London and Southampton universities with other bands from the album. The band also played one of the marquees at Greenbelt festival a couple of times; I'd left by the time they played second time. I'm not sure which time it was but one of the gigs earned us a mention in a book called Pop Goes The Gospel by John Blanchard and Derek Cleeve. Unfortunately, it was a negative report as the lead singer was accused of sexual poses! I'm not sure what we were attempting to do musically, the style at the time was new wave, it was punk your granny would like!”

Were Mystery Guests trying to push Christian music forward and did they consider 'Shots In The Dark' to be a radical project? “I knew the album was different, the alternatives at the time were either middle of the road rock or acoustic folk type stuff,” explained Mark. “I know we wanted to be a bit different but I'm not sure I personally can claim to have thought in terms of any of it being radical. The album was good fun to make; I can remember having to scrounge a snare drum from a store cupboard as when we set up the one from my own kit it sounded like a cardboard box full of nails. I thought we might get a few higher profile gigs out of doing the album though.””

Carrie Watt - Vocals
Chris Bird - Vocals and bass
Colin Andrews - Lead guitar
Rick Kirby - Rhythm guitar
Tim Hicks - Keyboards
Mark Godbeer - Drums

Compilation Appearances

Shots in the Dark (1981):
04) Take A Look At Yourselves
10) So Misunderstood