We’ve updated our Terms of Use to reflect our new entity name and address. You can review the changes here.
We’ve updated our Terms of Use. You can review the changes here.

The History of Headaches / American Novels

by Detective Instinct

  • Digital Album
    Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    Purchasable with gift card

      $8 USD  or more

    You own this




Following a string of mind-bending 7” collaborations (including tracks with Mike Watt and Jimmy McGee), Middlesbrough, England’s Detective Instinct presents a full-length LP following the same trademark formula: a variegated wall of art rock instrumental backings featuring a cast of distinguished guest vocalists (Jad Fair, Jim Putnam of Radar Brothers, GW Sok of The Ex, among others). On The History of Headaches / American Novels, Oli Heffernan combines rock instrumentation and synthesized textures to create an instrumental environment that is by turns languid and agitated, serene and paranoid. The resulting whole is simultaneously as cohesive as any great narrative concept album and as diverse and varied as your favorite classic postpunk comp.

"Another extraordinary offering from Oli Heffernan (Shrug, etc.)... Highly recommended." -The Link

"A dreamy and occasionally nightmarish sonic collage... Like a low budget Dark Night of the Soul it keeps you on your toes by flitting through the genres at every opportunity... It's a distinctive and rewarding record... which will stick in the memory whether you like it or not." -NARC.

"It’s fitting that the latest from Detective Instinct, ‘History of Headaches/American Novels’, should find a home at Third Uncle, who have been so good to preserve the Midwestern outsider weird-rock from which Trevor Pennsylvania and Human Adult Band evolved out of (as documented in their Third Uncle split with Jad Fair). In fact, Jad Fair is one of the many contributors to this collaborative collection, along with Truman’s Water (!!), members of Radar Brothers, the Ex, and led by Oli Heffernan. Coming out of central UK, Heffernan’s music distills the heart of Anglo low-fidelity, in like company with The Doozer and Pumice, as well as inspirational Americans like Eddie Callahan and King Missile, while taking this essential song-writing out of the bedroom and into as broad a field of musics as conceivable in rock music. Heffernan has an embarrassing wealth of painlessly clever Vini Reilly pocket-melodies made from subtle synthesis, and highlights include the percolating pop and crackle of “Breakfast Rainbow”, the Slint-with-strings “I Thought I Was Pregnant”, the devastating “I Will Try” (Gram Parsons x Baby Dee), and they’re pretty much all remarkable, particularly considering the essentially solo authorship of the project. My personal favorite is the punky children’s story “Lore of the Lamb”, a brilliant tale of hegemony and pants-shitting, plowing an unknown strait from the post-punk of The Fall to the cyber-crunk of Die Antwoord. On black vinyl with a heavy sleeve and download card. Limited to just 200 copies. Highest recommendation." - Animal PSI


released December 13, 2011

ENO 017


all rights reserved



Third Uncle Records Indianapolis, Indiana

Prohibitively DIY

contact / help

Contact Third Uncle Records

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code

Report this album or account