Featured Label: Probe Plus

Probe Plus is a record label based in Liverpool, England. It was founded in 1981 by Geoff Davies, an enthusiastic promoter of small, unsigned bands, who describes the label as “Music to drive you to drink”.

The labels first release was the self-titled debut EP by Ex Post Facto. For years the label was based in an office above the Probe shop in Rainford Gardens but due to a change in building ownership both the shop and label were forced to move and Davies set up office in his house.

Probe Plus has a number of bands to their name including Kelso, Dead Poppies and Marlowe. In 1990, the label released ‘Colours’, the first single by No-Man, who later signed to One Little Indian and Epic/Sony.

The label is perhaps best known for Half Man Half Biscuit, who have been signed to the label since 1985. Davies signed the group on the basis of a tape the band gave him, saying “I thought that if the tape was half as good as the titles then I’d want to record this group”. The band’s debut album sold over 50,000 copies, enabling Davies to plough money back into the label.

Probe Plus’ latest release is the new album ‘Urge For Offal’ from Half Man Half Biscuit. Released on the 20th October, the witty humour, clever lyrics and skilled songwriting are all here in abundance, proof indeed why John Peel regarded them as “one of his favourite bands of all time”.