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The Automatic

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Electro-punk quartet the Automatic formed in Cardiff, Wales, in the fall of 2003. Originally dubbed "White Rabbit," the founding lineup comprised singer/bassist Robin Hawkins, guitarist James Frost, keyboardist Alex Pennie, and drummer Iwan Griffiths. Rechristened the Automatic in early 2005, the band cut a demo that earned the attention of Probation Management, a subsidiary of Cardiff label FF Vinyl. Probation in turn mailed the demo to the B-Unique imprint, which immediately signed the band to a reputed 500,000-quid publishing deal. By year's end the Automatic was a major favorite of the famously excitable British press, with the single "Raoul" penetrating the U.K. Top 40 in the spring of 2006. The follow-up, "Monster," not only cracked the Top Five weeks later, but entered the chart solely on the strength of pre-retail downloads. The Automatic's debut LP, Not Accepted Anywhere, reached number three following its June 2006 release. The album was re-released the following year in the U.S., inexplixably under the name The Automatic Automatic. In 2007, Alex Pennie left the group and was replaced by Yourcodenameis:Milo’s Paul Mullen. The band flew to Los Angeles to record their second album This Is A Fix with producer Butch Walker, it was released in 2008 but received poor distribution and promotion by the band’s label B-Unique, resulting in poor sales. The band re-grouped and released their third album Tear The Signs Down in 2010. The first single to be released from it was “Interstate”. The group decided to take a brief hiatus to concentrate on other projects. ~ Jason Ankeny

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