Friday, November 30, 2007

The 28th Of MAYHEM

Here we go again, another disparate selection from the dusty attic of rock's past.
Up first, Atlanta's Hydra, a fantastic Southern Rock band who released 3 studio albums, (2 for the Capricorn label and 1 for Polydor), back in the movements heyday in the 1970's. Unfortunately, they split around 1977 without giving us that ultimate Southern Rock staple, the double live album. Reformed in 2004, they rectified the situation by releasing this sizzling live album to document the occasion. "Live - After All These Years", finds Hydra's fire undiminished by the passing of the years, this is a down home Southern-fried scorcher!

HYDRA - Live : After All These Years (2005) USA

Part 1:

Part 2:

Nextly, another reformation album, this time from 1996, this is "Killing Time" by legendary Irish NWOBHM band Sweet Savage. This one comes to us courtesy of nwobhm00, and many thanks go to him for his contribution, cheers buddy! This one finds the band rerecording some of their better known moments from the past, polishing up some compositions from yesteryear which never saw the light of day at the time, and pounding home some brand new compositions to boot!
Although the bands sound has been upgraded for modern audiences they also manage to remain true to their 80's roots and the album's a surprising success.

SWEET SAVAGE - Killing Time (1996) UK

Nextly, more Metal from the Emerald Isle, this is the final release in our long running Rogue Male discography post, their second and final full length album, "Animal Man". By the time this one was released there had been a bit of a backlash in the music press to the record label hype which had surrounded the bands "First Visit" album, which resulted in poor reviews for "Animal Man". In actuality, it's almost as strong as it's predecessor, the bands trademark sound bolstered by a slicker production job without striking much new ground sonically. It seemed like they were going for musical consolidation this time around. If they'd stuck around long enough to deliver album no3, it could have been their masterwork, their "Number Of The Beast", if you like. Alas, it wasn't to be and the band wound down during the abortive "Animal Man" tour.

ROGUE MALE - Animal Man (1986) UK

A nice blast from the more recent past now, courtesy of Dom, expert in all things heavy and Swedish, and this one ticks both those boxes. This was the debut demo from back in 2000 from Stockholm's Grand Magus, a fantastic old school sounding Heavy Metal band with a strong WITCHFINDER GENERAL/TROUBLE vibe. A musically muscular power-trio, this is a flab free, bottom-heavy assault on the senses across three brilliant tracks, topped by the fantastic vocals of guitarist Janne ''JB'' Christoffersson, also of SPIRITUAL BEGGARS. Go get!

SPIRITUAL BEGGARS - Demo Two Thousand (2000) Sweden

Some dusty old 7" NWOBHM vinyl next. Up first, the debut release from Bristol trio Shiva, the "Rock Lives On" 45, on Heavy Metal Records, from 1982. This is classy but raucous stuff, with some strong RUSH and Prog influences in places, fans of LIMELIGHT and CHASAR will lap this one up. The txt file with this one gives a lot of detail about the bands career, so i'll urge you to d/l and let the txt fill in the background info.

SHIVA - Rock Lives On 7" (1982) UK

Up next, the second release from Barnsley natives Seventh Son, their "Metal To The Moon"/"Sound & Fury" 7" on Rising Son Records from 1984. The band had been around for five years already by the time they released this, and their experience shows, they've definitely got their own sound and the songwriting is tight, succinct and memorable. If you've never had the pleasure, check them out, apparently there's a new album due next year to look forward to.

SEVENTH SON - Metal To The Moon/Sound & Fury 7" (1984) UK

A bit of a mystery 45 to finish with, i found this one on a disc and don't remember how it came to be in my possession, had a bit of a hunt around the web for some info on the band and drew a blank. So, what do we know about it? It's called "Marching To War" by a band called Blinder, and it's a neat little slice of commercial Hard Rockery with a mid-eighties vibe. They may be related to mid-90's Essex based alternative rock band Headswim, as there was apparently an earlier version of that band which went by the Blinder handle, and repeated plays lead me to think this may be the case as i hear strong similarities in the vocals. If anyone knows for sure, clue us in!

BLINDER - Marching To War 7" (198?) UK

That's it for tonight folks, dig in and enjoy the musical bounty!

Saturday, November 24, 2007


Howdy folks, another weekend, another grab bag of the awesome and the overlooked from the "obscure" section of the rock lexicon, all presented here for your titillation and edification.
Up first, the excellent one & only album, "Resurrection", by Tacoma, Washington's Taist Of Iron. Killer old school Heavy Metal, with great vocals by frontwoman Lorraine Gill. This girl could really wail , as could fantastic guitarist Wylum Pearson. The album snuck out on their own Iron label in 1984, and encouraged by the reception it got, the band relocated to make it in Hollywood. As it has done so many bands before, Hollywood ground them down, and despite having most of their projected second album completed, they flung in the towel in 1986. There's some talk of a possible reformation of the band, if i hear more, you'll read about it here, Go get "Resurrection", it's a cracker!

TAIST OF IRON - Resurrection (1984) USA

Some more female fronted rawkin' for you now, in the shape of the debut album by Toronto. In Canada it was titled "Lookin' For Trouble", in the U.S., simply "Toronto". This is some fine commercial Hard Rock with tremendous gritty vocals from singer Holly Woods, and was produced by "The Two Brians", (Henderson & McLeod), of CHILIWACK. Subsequent albums became ever more commercial, (although "Head On" kept the gutsy vibe of the debut), and the material more airbrushed and AOR in style, the band eventually folding in 1985, despite huge success in their native land. Fans of HELLION will find much to enjoy in the ANNE BOLEYN-like vocals of the divine Ms. Woods.

TORONTO - Lookin' For Trouble (1980) Canada

Next, courtesy of blog visitor nwobhm00, here's the sole album by English band Mothers Ruin, "Road To Ruin" from 1982 on the Sparta label. This is more polished and glossy than their first couple of 45s, which i posted here recently, the style remains the same essentially, but the production, which sounds pretty expensive for an independent release in 1982, shaves off too many rough edges for my tastes and leaves them sounding a little like an Anglo version of JOURNEY. Great musicianship, and well written songs, i'm sure some of you will love it!
Thanks again for taking the time to contribute nwobhm00!

MOTHERS RUIN - Road To Ruin (1982) UK

An amalgam of contemporary Rock and old school soulful Southern Rock for you next. This is a little something i found on p2p recently, as the only item in a users folder called "Contemporary Southern Rock", intrigued, i d/led this EP from the guy and gave it a listen the following day. Wow!! I was blown away by what i heard, especially second song "Sanctuary", i can't stop playing the damn thing, so i thought i'd pass it on to you people. The band is called Kennebec, the EP is called "2007", and they're from Raleigh, North Carolina. If there's any justice, they'll be huge!

KENNEBEC - 2007 (2007) USA

Into the NWOBHM part of our programme now, and we've got a couple of sweet finds for you here.
Up first, Slough trio Sledgehammer, whom most of you should be aware of from their "Metal For Muthas" and "Brute Force" compilation appearances, or perhaps from their their sole album. They were quite fancied in the press at the time to take the step up into the big leagues but it never happened despite some high profile tours and festival appearances. This is their "In The Queue" 45 from 1983, on the Illuminated Record label, and like all their recorded work, it's essential listening for all NWOBHM lovers.

SLEDGEHAMMER - In The Queue 7" (1983) UK

Another name you should be familiar with next, this is Dublin's Sweet Savage. This is their second 7", "Straight Through The Heart" from 1983, and the last to feature DIO bound guitarist Vivian Campbell, who would later replace Steve Clarke in DEF LEPPARD. Rousing Hard Rock with a catchy chorus, the A-Side seems to have been written with radio in mind, and with the breaks the song could have garnered some chart success. Following Campbells departure things went awry for the band, with members coming and going and numerous splits and reformations throughout the 80s. They finally got it together in the 90s to release two full length albums on the legendary Neat label, but by that time the moment had passed.

SWEET SAVAGE - Straight Through The Heart 7" (1983) UK

Finally, here's the 1981 "Out Of My Head" single by Kent quartet, Raw Deal on the White Witch label. This band has nothing to do with the raw Deal who released a 7" called "Lone Wolf", on Neat Records the same year, just another case of the same name finding favour with more than one NWOBHM band at the same time. This is pretty cool stuff, flip it over metaphorically, for my favourite of the two songs, "In The Mood".

RAW DEAL - Out Of My Head 7" (1981) UK

As per usual, no pw is required for the rars, and if you click on the jpgs here, they blow up to give you the largest artwork i was able to find. Where possible i've included txt files giving as much release info as possible, and album art if i have it. Hope you enjoy the selection tonight, much love to you homiez!

Friday, November 16, 2007


Heavy Metal, Hard Rock, Southern Rock, NWOBHM, we got them all this time out, along with some side road diversions into uncharted bluesy, punky, jazzy & countrified backwaters. Will you enjoy them all? Maybe, maybe not. Will you find something to set your tail on end that you'll cherish forever? Quite possibly, and i sincerely hope so too.
Up first, the band they call "The Greatest Rock'n'Roll Band In The World". From Tucson, Arizona, by way of Seattle, Washington, put your hands together for the all powerful Supersuckers!
If you've never had the pleasure people, you're in for a treat. This is a great live album, which was only available on their website a few years back, recorded in Sweden in 2001. It finds the band in tip-top form rawkin' & rollin' their way through a 22 song set of some of the finest shit kickin' hard rock'n'roll known to man. There are also 2 primo studio tracks on there too just to sweeten the deal. Imagine THIN LIZZY reared on MOTORHEAD, AC/DC & THE RAMONES, and you're about halfway to understanding how awesome this band is.
Ladies & gentlemen, we often lament on this blog about the great bands that slipped under the radar and never got near the success they deserved. The Supersuckers have been going for the best part of the last 20 years, gigging harder than most, releasing quality music and keeping the flag flying for real rawk music, and they're still doing it! If you like what you hear here, support them, buy an album, go & see them live, help keep them on the road, don't let a band this good go unrewarded for their efforts, help them "fly the finger" in the face of musical mediocrity.
Sermon over.

SUPERSUCKERS - Rock'n'Roll (2001) USA

A little change of pace again now, we're super-chuffed to bring you some quality Southern Rock music from Georgia's sublime Eric Quincy Tate. From 1975, this is their 3rd album, "EQT", a half-studio, half-live experience that shows off both their succinct songwriting and their ability to jam out with the very best of them. Again, this is a band that's still out there doing it today after 37 years, that kind of dedication goes above & beyond the call of duty, this great record was recorded after 5 years together, can you imagine how good they must be now?


On a heavier note now, here's the sole album, "Released From The Crypt", by Seattle-ites Serpents Knight, from way back in 1983. Best known nowadays for featuring future SANCTUARY & NEVERMORE vocalist WARREL DANE, the 'Knight were one of the best traditional Heavy Metal bands of their day. Sadly, their progress was hampered by the burgeoning Thrash movement and they were unable to capitalize on this early triumph as members began leaving and the tide of musical fashion turned against them. Various versions of the band came together and parted ways over the years, then came the news that the "...Crypt" line-up were going to rerecord unheard demo tracks and write material for a new album, which is due next year apparently. Could this finally be their time?

SERPENTS KNIGHT - Released From The Crypt (1983) USA

As a companion to their first album which i posted here a wee while back, we now travel back in time to bring you the second album by Munich based Heavy Metal Rock'n'Roll stormtroopers, Railway. This is their self-explanatory "II" album from 1985, and is considered by them in the know to be the high water mark for the Teutonic terrors. On the back of this release they were offered several high profile European tours, and went out on the road with MOTORHEAD, TOKYO BLADE & BONFIRE. After this they changed direction somewhat, going for a more mainstream sound and losing their identity as members began to leave, but if you enjoy Hard edged European Metal from this era with an ear for a good melody and tight songwriting, you'll be in heaven here.

RAILWAY - II (1985) Germany

On to the NWOBHM segment of our post for this evening, and, as promised, here's the 2nd 7" from Mother's Ruin, this one is entitled "Street Lights", and like it's predecessor "Streetfighter", is high on melody and dynamics, but is perhaps a little too radio-friendly for the denim & leather brigade. There was an album which followed this called "Road To Ruin", which i've never managed to track down, it'd be interesting to hear a whole albums worth of material from this overlooked act. Anyone?

MOTHERS RUIN - Street Lights 7" (1982) UK

Now, on the Santathal Records label, the one-off 7" release from the (apparently), much sought after Impact, this is "Days Gone By" from 1981, and i've yet to hear it myself, so why don't you people tell me what it sounds like after you've d/led the bugger. Time's been a bit short recently and i'm way behind on my listening!

IMPACT - Days Gone By 7" (1981) UK

To finish things off tonight, another one-off release, this is the "Black Of The Night" 7" by the excellently named Wikkyd Vikker. This one appeared on the Boogie/Furnace label in 1983, and i dimly recall an appearance in the pages of Kerrang! magazine around that time, possibly in the "Armed & Ready" section. If memory serves, and it often doesn't these days they were from the Midlands and also had a track on one of the numerous Ebony Records compilations. Bottom line? Typical NWOBHM bombast with a shit production job and a poor vocalist, raised out of the ordinary by some interesting and inventive songwriting touches and guitarwork.

WIKKYD VIKKER - Black Of The Night 7" (1983) UK

Have a great weekend people, especially any fellow Scots watching the BIG game tomorrow.
Do we dare to dream?

Thursday, November 08, 2007


Well, we're covering a fair old bit of musical ground with this one tonight, lots of different stuff to delight those of you who were less than delighted by last times all-Southern Rock post.
Not that anyone grumbled about it, the visitors here appear to be pretty open minded and/or tolerant of music which might not entirely be their bag.
Whatever the style we post here, you can be sure it'll be music with heart, soul, teeth, fangs, claws & balls. That should be our guarantee/warning.
Anyway, i'll get on with it & i'll try & be brief with the descriptions tonight, coz i'm tired & i want my bed.
Firstly, the one and only album by US Rock band Fortress, their lost classic, "Hands In The Till" from 1981. They encompass everything over the course of the record, ranging from Classic Rock to Southern Rock on the ten songs here, with occasional nods to Hard Rock & AOR too. Every song is superbly crafted and brilliantly sung by powerful vocalist Jim West, it's a real goodie! Go gettit, you need it.

FORTRESS - Hands In The Till (1981) USA

Some excellent early Power Metal next from Chicago's Thrust, this is their fabulous "Fist Held High" album from the year 1984. A great record that got lost in the avalanche of great releases in that most Metal year, this one's due for rediscovery, being as it is one of the great last blasts of traditional Metal before the burgeoning Thrash and Glam movements killed off most of the lower league bands in their wake. Great chest-beating stuff which reminds a little of the likes of ANVIL, MANOWAR, EXCITER & ARMORED SAINT in places. It also includes a song called "Posers Will Die!", what are you waiting for?

THRUST - Fist Held High (1984) USA

Something a little subtler now, this is the great debut album by BLUE OYSTER CULT guitarist Buck Dharma, "Flat Out" from 1982. Boasting a stellar backing cast of ex-ALICE COOPER members, Neal Smith & Dennis Dunaway, FOGHAT man Craig MacGregor and future B.O.C. colleague Rick Downey, this is neither the glum introspectiveness or the guitar wankery that might have been expected. Instead of taking the obvious route Dharma & co crafted a radio friendly assortment of FM Rock songs which are uniformly excellent and unlike much in the B.O.C. back catalogue. There's some touches of real elegance in the music here, as clever as it was unexpected, that it didn't hit bigger is a real surprise.

BUCK DHARMA - Flat Out (1982) USA

Up next, five minute "wonders" Oral, who created a moderate fuss in the UK rock press and tabloid newspapers for about a week back in 1985, with the single entendre dunderheadedness of this, their "Oral Sex" Mini LP. Musically, this isn't too bad, the all girl group have some good hooks and riffs, but the production lets them down musically, and the lyrics and image adopted blew any small chance that they had of being taken seriously. You may remember the fuss, i doubt anyone remembers the songs, wanna hear what the short lived fuss was about?

ORAL - Oral Sex Mini LP (1985) UK

Obscure US metal three piece Rex Vector next. This is their lone release, the "Breathe Fire" 7" from 1985 on the self explanatory Metal Rock Records label. It's Metal maaaan, and it rocks too!
Big bucks item nowadays thanks to it's scarcity, see what you think of it.

REX VECTOR - Breathe Fire 7" (1985) USA

Up next, this is the rare "Here Comes The Wrecking Crew" 7" by Cleveland Ohio's Black Death from back in 1984. This 7" only ever came free with the initial pressing of their "Black Death" album on Auburn Records, why they chose to put their best song ("...Wrecking Crew") on a bonus 7" instead of on the album is a little mystifying, but if you fancy the idea of MOTORHEAD going Speed Metal 1984 style, you'll dig the fuck out of this.

BLACK DEATH - Here Comes The Wrecking Crew 7" (1984) USA

Finally tonight, the debut release from collectible Hard Rockin' NWOBHM'ers Mother's Ruin, this is their 1981 7", "Streetfighter" on Spectra Records. With a big debt to UFO and a rousing chorus or two, this is nice stuff, let down slightly by an "of it's time", no-budget production job. I'll have their second 7" next time 'round if you enjoy this one.

MOTHERS RUIN - Streetfighter 7" (1981) UK

That's yer whack for tonight folks, i'm dog tired and need to cut some zeds.
See y'all soon.

Friday, November 02, 2007


Howdy pardners, i've been in a Southern mood this last week or so, and although i don't usually deviate too much from the straight & narrow, apart from the occasional sideways tangent, i thought i'd treat all y'all to a six pack of Southern fried sizzlers for tonights post.
So kick back on y'porch, uncork a bottle of Makers Mark and prepare yerselves for some swamp boogie rawk'n'rollin'.
Up first, from the not really that Southern state of Missouri, the self titled debut album from 1977 from the somewhat obviously named Missouri. These Kansas City boys rawk out with catchy abandon and no shortage of catchy finesse. Led by Ron West, brother of Shooting Star's Gary West, these boys put in two hard years of touring off the back of the minor success of this album and it's minor hit single "Movin' On", leading eventually to a major label deal which yielded the follow up album "Welcome Two Missouri" in '79. Unfortunately due to the fickle finger of fate, they lost their deal with Polygram shortly after the release of LP No2, and despite sticking around until 1984, they released no further music. This is great stuff, and another tragic tale of "what might have been...". If you like this one ROBOTS FOR RONNIE blog has that 2nd album sitting waiting for you.

MISSOURI - Missouri (1977) USA

Next, we're proud to bring you the 3rd album by Louisiana four piece Potliquor, this is "Louisiana Rock & Roll" which came out in 1973 on the Janus label. A great rump shaking bluesy rock'n'roll quartet, this is another gem of a band who've never been given the plaudits they deserved. When the history of Southern Rock gets written these boys deserve their own chapter, i bet it'd be one hell of a tail. There's some gospel, country and Hard Rock diversions here, just to keep it interesting, but what they do best is rootsy gutbucket Southern rock'n'roll, and they deliver here in spades, with some of their most memorable material being on this here record.
You can find their 2nd album "Levee Blues" and their 4th, "Potliquor" over at ROBOTS FOR RONNIE too. Tell 'em NILOOB sent ya.

POTLIQUOR - Louisiana Rock & Roll (1973) USA

Way back to 1972 now for the 2nd album by Georgia four piece Eric Quincy Tate. Yup, it's a band, not a solo artist. Apparently "Eric" was from Eric Burdon, singer with THE ANIMALS, "Quincy" was from Quincy, Massachusetts, and "Tate" was the surname of a Navy buddy of the bands leader Donnie McCormick. The album "Drinking Man's Friend", came out on the home of 70's Southern Rock, Capricorn Records out of Macon Georgia, and that should be all you need to know before you click the download link. If not, let me further tempt you by saying this is a brilliant unassuming little record made by awesome musicians who can play the hell out of just about any style without overdoing it and deliver unpretentious down home stuck in your head for days rock'n'rollin' with passion and soul. Go forth and download.

ERIC QUINCY TATE - Drinking Man's Friend (1972) USA

Here's a little something for all y'all now which should float the boats of all those who enjoyed the recent DOC HOLLIDAY post, this is a "solo" album by their keyboard player Eddie Stone. Now, normally i wouldn't be getting too worked up by a keyboardists solo album, but Eddie's amassed some of the finest players in the South to join him on this outing, and it's quite a record let me tell you. Joining him on this one are ALL the other members of Doc Holliday, Ronnie Hammond from ATLANTA RHYTHM SECTION, several members of THE OUTLAWS, and folks from MARSHALL TUCKER BAND, MOLLY HATCHET, STILLWATER, MOTHER'S FINEST, The BAMA BAND and GRINDERSWITCH, amongst others. As well as Stone's excellent original songs, there are several co-writes with Doc Holliday's Bruce Brookshire and covers of songs by JOHN FOGERTY and COWBOY. What'cha waiting for?

EDDIE STONE & FRIENDS - Eddie Stone & Friends (2004) USA

Now, you should all be well aware of the mighty Point Blank, they released several of the key Southern Rock albums of the 70's before heading off in a more radio friendly direction which maintained their Texan roots right into the early part of the 1980's. After many years apart, they reconvened for a charity concert in 2005 and have stuck at it, returning to recording this year with the aptly titled "Reloaded". This one cherry picks the highlights from their early career and gives them a kick up the ass 2007 style, this is the actual recorded sound of the South rising again!

POINT BLANK - Reloaded (2007) USA

Finally, here's a newer act which you should really acquaint yourselves with, ten piece rawk gods White Cowbell Oklahoma. Yes, i did say ten piece, these guys have four, yes four guitar players! Apparently their live show includes naked go-go dancers, chainsaws and fire breathing, haven't had the pleasure of checking them out live, but it must be quite an experience going by the unholy sound on this here debut Mini LP from 2002. The sound is classic, the delivery is much more modern, if SKYNYRD had grown up on KISS and LIZZY, they might've sounded like this.

WHITE COWBELL OKLAHOMA - White Cowbell Oklahoma Mini LP (2002) USA

That's all for tonight, fear not, things'll be back to "normal" in time for the next post, which i'll try and get done for midweek next week, lot's of Hard Rawk, NWOBHM and Heavy Metal nuggets still to come. Hope you enjoy this Southern diversion, i'll look forward to your comments on this one!