By late May of 1989, Cleaners from Venus man Martin Newell and Peter Nice aka Nelson finished their first album, Lizardland, and handed it over to upstart indie Deltic Records. Though there is a fair amount of Cleaners from Venus DNA in the mix due to the charms of the definitely lo-fi recording methods, the music of the Brotherhood of Lizards has a sharp sound all its own. And, the story doesn’t stop there.
Towards the end of 1989, Deltic label head Andy McQueen, who knew Newell’s general aversion to touring, asked if there was any possibility that the duo might go on a promotional tour. Newell replied, “Only by bicycle.” Though there was a heavy sigh on the other end of the line, soon after, whilst studying a map of England and its regional radio stations, it struck Newell that a bicycle tour might be a real possibility. Thus, amazingly, in early October, Newell and Nelson set off on bicycles, instruments on backs, tiny amps in front carriers, for a 600-mile busking tour of the entire southern half of England. The media became unexpectedly interested. More through sheer eccentricity than eco-activism, at the turn of a turbulent decade, the Lizards had unwittingly hitched a ride on a brand new zeitgeist. They were called “The First Eco Rock Band” and the tour became the subject of a number of news items, as well as a documentary that is, alas, now lost.