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The Crimea are a Britishmarker indie band, based in Camdenmarker, Londonmarker. The band were featured in the late John Peel's Festive Fifty, ranking higher than bands such as The White Stripes and all eleven of the initial album demos were played on his show. The Guardian has described The Crimea's songs as "mini-epics" that reduce frontman Mr Croln to "spasms of jerking anguish".


The Crimea began life as The Crocketts, signing to a UK major label, V2, in 1998 and releasing two albums; however, in late 2001, the band were dropped from the label's roster as part of a 'rationalisation' plan. Unwilling to quit following this setback, Mr Croln and Owen Hopkin formed The Crimea. Comparing The Crimea to their former band in an early press release, "if the Crocketts were four cavemen banging stones together, [then] this is the sound of four Tchaikovskys banging Kylie Minogue".

The Crimea were signed to Warner Bros Records following a showcase at the 2004 SXSW Festival in Texas. Their debut album, Tragedy Rocks, was released in 2005, with the first single from the album, "Lottery Winners On Acid", released on January 9th, 2006; it entered the UK singles chart at No. 31 and became the first of three singles to appear as Single of the Week on what was then the show hosted by both Colin Murray and Edith Bowman on BBC Radio 1. In support of The Crimea's second single, "White Russian Galaxy", the band then performed on Top of the Pops.

Due to poor album sales Warner Bros dropped The Crimea in late 2006. Displaying remarkable tenacity, the band continued to write new material and in April 2007 released Secrets of the Witching Hour as a free download from the band's website; a CD was also available, with artwork by Joe Udwin, the band's bassist, in collaboration with London-based, visual artist Tersha Willis. The band received a lot of support from Radio 1 DJ, Colin Murray, who gave the Crimea airtime on his nightly show by playing one track from the album each week and advocating downloading the album. The band hoped to tour substantially off the back of the new record.

The Crimea have toured with artists including Regina Spektor, Billy Corgan, Kings Of Leon, Travis, Primal Scream, Stereophonics and Ash. During December 2006 the band played three dates in support of Snow Patrol on their UK arena tour ending at Wembley Arena, London. In May they also supported Modest Mouse on their short UK tour. In late 2007 the band supported Stereophonics on their UK tour.

In early 2008 their single "Loop a Loop" featured in a television advert for Trident gum.

Mr Croln is the brother of Radio 1 DJ Annie Croln, who appears as backing vocals on their two records.

Secrets of The Witching Hour

From 30 April, 2007, Secrets of the Witching Hour was available for free download at The Crimea's website; the original release date was set for 13 May, 2007. As of 13th September 2009 the album has been downloaded 108,922 times. The band planned to upload a different version of the album once it hits 100k downloads.

At midnight on 13 May, 2007 the band performed an acoustic gig at the summit of Primrose Hillmarker to celebrate the release of the album.

Several of the songs on the album feature spoken introductions by Regina Spektor.




The 2006 LWOA, WRG and BB singles are not re-issues, but new recordings with new b-sides.


  • Mr Croln - Vocals, guitar, twangle
  • Joe Udwin - Bass, backing vocals
  • Andrew Stafford - Keyboards, backing vocals
  • Owen Hopkin - Drums

Past Members

  • Andrew Norton - Lead Guitar 2004- 2007
  • Julz Parker - Lead Guitar 2003

External links

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