Monday, March 08, 2010

TAKE HERMAN TO THE CIRCUS

Welcome back my friends, to the post which never ends.
Can it really be two and a half weeks since last i sat here cursing my computer whilst furiously typing away with one finger at my ash flecked keyboard?
Apparently so.
That's the "ado" over with, without any further here's the music...
For starters, SABOTAGE were a U.S. Heavy Metal quintet formed in Detroit, Michigan in 1982.
They quickly built up a devoted following in the local area with their epic, moody Heavy Metal sound and became a popular feature on the Detroit club scene of the time.
In 1983 the band recorded their debut album, the eleven song "Cloudborne", financing the sessions themselves. A schizophrenic affair, the album veers between the epic heavy sound of the band's beginnings and the more polished Hard Rock/AOR style which they were beginning to pursue.
With no record deal forthcoming, the band were forced to self-release the album on cassette in early 1984 and use the tape as a demo to try to stir up some label interest.
Signing a deal with the small IHM Record label, the band recorded a five song self-titled Mini LP in late 1984 which was released early the following year.
This recording is entirely in the AOR mould with occasional Prog-Rock flourishes.
Around the time of the record's release, guitarist John Patrick left the band, and unable to find a suitable replacement, Sabotage folded.
Vocalist Doug Tucker & John Patrick were then reunited in TAROT, a band who featured former members of PONY EXPRESS & DEATH WISH, releasing a demo in late 1985.
This alliance was to be short lived however, with Tucker soon rejoining his former Sabotage band mates under the new band name of DYING BREED.
John Patrick would again resurface in the late '80's with the tongue in cheek Thrash influenced quartet Sgt. BILLHEAD, who released a 12 song 1990 demo called "Apocalypso".
Following Dying Breed's dissolution, bassist Chris Bezas and drummer Glenn Gugel formed a new band called SADDLETRAMP who recorded a couple of early '90's demo tapes and played extensively around the Michigan area.
Patrick and Tucker would later work together yet again when both joined a new line-up of early '80's Detroit band ILLUSION in 1997.
Illusion have since released four albums, the live "Memphis After Dark" (2001), "Mysteries & Secrets Revealed!" (2002), "Sleight Of Hand" (2005), (also releasing an EP called "Silent Valor" the same year), and last year's "Turbulence and Tranquility".

SABOTAGE - Cloudborne (1984) USA

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=ACS7Q3XP

SISTER DOUBLE HAPPINESS were a post-Punk Blues Rock band formed in 1986 in San Francisco. They released four studio albums, an EP, and a live album across their nine-year existence.
Its core members were Gary Floyd and Lynn Perko, who were in the seminal Punk band THE DICKS.
Sister Double Happiness' music was bluesier than that of the Dicks, and lyrically they were generally more personal in tone than the politically radical style of their earlier band; however, Floyd and Perko's leftist lyrics and punk influences were not entirely gone.
Debuting in 1988 with a self-titled album on former BLACK FLAG guitarist Greg Ginn's SST Records, the band spent much of the next few years touring, building up a loyal grass roots following with their emotive Bluesy Alternative Rock.
However, they also split up for a period during this time, with Floyd taking a sabbatical from the band to pursue his interest in Eastern philosophy and spirituality.
With the focus back on the music, 1991 saw the band sign to major label Reprise Records, and release the "Heart & Mind" album, which in turn led to more bouts of heavy touring, both as a headliner and support act.
A switch to Warner Chappel and the expansion of the band to a quintet occurred before the release of their third (and best) album, "Uncut" in 1993.
Later the same year, a self-titled EP was also issued by the same label, before the band again found a new home, this time with Seattle's Sub Pop Records.
Issuing album No 4, "Horsey Water" for their new label in 1994, the band gradually began to crumble in the wake of the records release, as the years of fruitless struggle took their toll on interpersonal relationships in the groups ranks.
After the dissolution of Sister Double Happiness in 1995, Floyd formed and primarily played in Europe with the blues group THE GARY FLOYD BAND; a compilation of this material, "Backdoor Preacher Man", is now available.
Floyd and Sister Double Happiness guitarist Danny Roman also earlier played in BLACK KALI MA, a blues-punk act that recorded an LP entitled "You Ride The Pony (I'll Be The Bunny)" for Alternative Tentacles in 1999.
Gary Floyd is now in a band called THE BUDDHA BROTHERS, and has also recorded solo as a country musician.
Perko went on to become a member of indie rock band IMPERIAL TEEN in 1996, who have released five albums to date. Perko also appeared on Black Kali Ma's lone album.
Guitarist Ben Cohen returned to his native France and became more interested in electronic and dance music post-SDH, recording with THE PARTY & STARDUST, and guesting alongside DAFT PUNK.
Under the alias of BENJAMIN DIAMOND he has released five albums of Dance/Electro music.
Bassist Jeff Palmer went on to join Psychedelic Pop band MOMMYHEADS, recording four albums with them, and also joined the reformed SUNNY DAY REAL ESTATE.
A posthumous Sister Double Happiness album, "A Stone's Throw from Love (Live and Acoustic at the Great American Music Hall 06/17/92)", was released a few years ago by SST Records.

SISTER DOUBLE HAPPINESS - Heart And Mind (1991) USA

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=E0BRE6JW

Who were LUCIFER?
According to the liner notes (and photos), the group was made up of four UK musicians who often played together in a cave in Arizona.
Perhaps in the acid-ravaged mind of Peter Walker (ex-PURPLE GANG) this was reality, but for the rest of us, Lucifer was Walker's solo project (meaning he invented the other guys).
Walker, a bit of an oddball, was into witchcraft and joined a coven in the late 60’s to further get into it.
Returning to music in the early '70's, he no longer went by his birth name, insisting his name was now "Lucifer".
Lucifer’s first release was the 1972 7" single "Fuck You", described as “a love song”, which included a free ‘Fuck You’ poster.
This enabled Walker to make an album, after the release of a further single, "Prick", also recorded in 1972, (thankfully not in a cave), and released as a Private Pressing.
The LP, "Big Gun", was only available via mail order through underground papers such as International Times and Oz, with the sleeve plain black, years before SPINAL TAP, AC/DC or METALLICA copped the idea.
A third 7", "Don’t Care", also surfaced around the same time as the full length album.
Frankly it's weird weird music, off kilter and messy, but loaded with an atmosphere which makes me want to hear it over again.
1973 saw the release of a second & final Lucifer album, "Exit", which was hyped in the press as "Rock-electronics by LUCIFER with sound-effects and dialogue from the soundtrack of the motor-cycle shock film EXIT".
A final single, "Mr. Jack", was issued in March of 1973 before Walker/Lucifer seemingly disappeared for good.
And the moral of the story?
Just say NO to drugs.
Don't mistake this Lucifer for the New York based quartet of the same name who were around at roughly the same time.
The music on their sole self-titled 1971 album was pretty conventional bar-band Hard Rock in comparison.

LUCIFER - Big Gun (1972) UK

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=US84UR1R

THE UNDEAD are a "Horror Punk" band formed in 1980 in New Milford, New Jersey by Bobby Steele (Vocals & Guitar), Chris "Jack" Natz (Bass), and Patrick Blanck (Drums), after Steele had been fired from THE MISFITS.
In 1982 The Misfits' main man, Glenn Danzig, helped finance the recording of The Undead's debut EP. They released the EP, the four song "9 Toes Later" on Stiff Records later that same year. The title of the EP came from the fact that one of Bobby's toes was amputated around the time of the recording! A few months later Jack and Patrick left the band.
Brian Payne became the bassist and Bobby Savage the drummer. This line-up released the "Verbal Abuse" single in 1983.
Steve Zing (of SAMHAIN and MOURNING NOISE) then took over the drumsticks. Between 1983 and 1986 Brian and Steve played for the band on and off, and many others played in The Undead for short periods. Brian and Steve finally quit the band in December 1986.
Since then Bobby has not managed to keep a steady line-up. One-time bassist Inger Lorre went on to front THE NYMPHS.
6 singles and 7 EPs have been released by the band, but "Act Your Rage" (1989), "Til Death" (1998) and "Dawn Of The Undead" (2006) are their only full-length studio albums.
In 2007, The Undead recorded its own version of the infamous "lost" Misfits album, "12 Hits From Hell", and made the full recording available as a stream on its website on Halloween. This release was quickly followed by a new single, a cover of The Misfits' "Halloween".
Drummer Patrick Blanck died in 2001 in a diving accident in the Dominican Republic.
Bassist Olga De Volga (aka Susan Smith), died in 2008.
Bobby Steele released a solo album, simply called "Bobby", in 2009.
The Undead's new studio album is due in 2010.

THE UNDEAD - Nine Toes Later EP (1982) USA

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=RCQJBGFS

DEUCE were a NWOBHM quintet formed in Nottingham in 1983.
They made their recording debut in 1985 with the four song "Make It Bleed" demo tape.
After this release the band replaced singer Punkie Richards with Iain Dilley and shed guitarist Dieter Taschner to become a four piece.
1986 saw their lone vinyl appearance released, the three song "Backs To The Wall" EP on Powermetal Records.
Following the EP's release, the band's line up fragmented, with two former members of ORION coming in to shore things up.
Unfortunately, this was to be a short term fix and the band split up in 1986.
Singer Iain Dilley went on to be a short-lived member of WRAITH, before joining PERSIA. He later formed APB with former PARALEX members, who recorded a four song 1989 Demo entitled "Open Fire".
The last sighting of Dilley was in the ranks of PSYCHO WRECK, who released the 1993 album, "Care In The Community".
Guitarist Gregg Russell passed through the ranks of Welsh Glam titans TIGERTAILZ post-Deuce, before finding himself as a latter day member of Wraith, appearing on their 2007 "Evolution" album.
This Deuce were no relation to the other UK band of the same name who released the "Radar Love" 7" and appeared on the "Metal Warrior" compilation album, before becoming St. HELLIER.

DEUCE - Backs To The Wall EP (1986) UK

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=HBJP0A84

HELLRAZER were a five piece NWOBHM band formed by former STORMTROOPER vocalist Paul Merrel in London in early 1981.
Their first release came later that same year in the form of a 7" single entitled "The Devil's Got The Deeds To Rock And Roll".
Backed with "Glam Girl", the single was released by the independent Alias Smith And Jones Records.
Merrell was to leave the band soon after the single's release, to join the higher profile JAGUAR.
With Jaguar, Merrel recorded the 1982 "Axe Crazy" single, and the albums "Power Games" and the disappointing "This Time".
After Jaguar's demise, he was a member of AOR band THE ARENA.
Carrying on without their former singer, Hellrazer decided not to replace Merrell, remaining a quartet with the vocals courtesy of former bassist Punky Puchino, with rhythm guitarist Wayne 'Bonkka' Bailey now switching to bass.
A two song demo was recorded in 1984 by this line up, featuring new song "Shout Hey!" and a re-recording of the first single's "Glam Girl", now retitled "Space Girl (Intergalactic Love)".
Their next, (and final), official release didn't surface until 1987, although there may well have been further demos recorded in the intervening years.
The "Made Of Metal" 7" was issued on the Speed Machine record label, and as well as the title track it also featured the song, "Hooligan".
The record did little at the time to raise Hellrazer's profile, and the band sadly split soon after it's release.
A real shame, as NWOBHM collectors now hold the record in high esteem, and one listen should show you why.

HELLRAZER - Made Of Metal 7" (1987) UK

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=GYRZYUL7

Finally, this NWOBHM band lay at the lighter end of the movement's spectrum. They are actually more of a Melodic Rock band.
Their entire recording catalogue consists of two singles, the other one being 1982's "Coming Home", which i posted here ages ago.
What's so interesting about these two tracks?
The presence of synths isn't a standard in NWOBHM, but Valhalla weren't the only ones doing it (nor the first). It isn't the compositions, as the songs are rather simple. It's not the riffs, because there aren't any to speak off really.
For the most part the guitar parts are just single chords being struck.
It's not the production either, which merely sounds adequate (Neat Records was a small label, and not that much money could be spent on production).
A small but loyal local following obviously kept Valhalla going, but although vocalist Howard distinguished himself with powerful pipes and great technique, Valhalla's glossy hard rock style simply begged for a bigger recording and marketing budget if they were going to compete with their major-label counterparts.
This would never come to pass, though, and so the band members decided to go their separate ways a short time later, without any further releases to the group's name.
So, if at first glance there's nothing there to set the band apart, what the hell makes this single such an enjoyable listen?
Easy. It's because the uncluttered melodic nature of the songs serves as a perfect vessel to deliver the good vocal melodies that are actually the focal part of Valhalla's style. It's all very straight forward. But so effective. Simplicity can sometimes be a beautiful thing.
This band are no relation to the earlier UK band who released the "Lightning In The Sky" 7" in 1980.

VALHALLA - Still In Love With You 7" (1984) UK

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=QJTDKUZ8

Plenty of variety for you in tonight's selection, there should be something there for every palette, no matter how jaded. That's the hope anyway!
Many thanks to all of you who take the time to use the comments section to drop by and say howdy, exchange ideas, correct inaccuracies, fill in gaps and generally make this place a nice space to hang around in.
As always, it's much appreciated.
Those of you who waltz on by, grab the music, and disappear again, that's okay as well i guess, but i'd enjoy hearing your opinions too. If you could find the time to share a few thoughts on the blog, that'd be even better.
"See" you again in about two weeks time for more of the similar, until then take care of yourselves and be good.

18 Comments:

Blogger Grk! said...

The face on the Valhalla sleeve looks like that of Benny off Crossroads.

Curious to hear the Lucifer album - cheers!

Monday, March 08, 2010 6:38:00 PM  
Anonymous scoach said...

is it possible to post another links for DARKSTARR 1983 (EP) + DIETRICH 1982 RED ALERT + MANIMALS 1985 BLOOD IS THE HARVEST + TRIPLE FORTE please?
Thanks.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010 10:12:00 PM  
Blogger bigfootkit said...

Sorry Scoach, i just don't have the time to take care of re-ups just now.
Perhaps someone else who visits here could help Scoach out with a re-up or four?

Thursday, March 11, 2010 2:58:00 PM  
Blogger Marlene said...

Hello, I found my way here from Time Traveler blog, where you had a post about Raw Honey from the 1970's. My father was Duane's cousin and close friend. I am trying to track down some more information, and would appreciate any help you could offer.

Monday, March 15, 2010 8:32:00 PM  
Anonymous MisterManiac said...

I just heard the Warrior (UK) "Live in A Dive" recording, enjoyed it a lot and decided to track down the remainder of their very-limited discography. As a regular visitor here, I immediately thought of your blog...and to no surprise at all, you had their other three ep's posted here. So thanks for posting these...know they're from a while ago, but a DL deserves a thanks in my book.

Ps...there's a few spam postings on this thread. May want to remove them...no telling where those links lead (and I'm not about to research them...lol).

Wednesday, March 17, 2010 4:03:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanks for these rare albums...stormchild a must, and by the way ive read lots of shallow blogs, but you give such depth and story to the music, its quite engrossing. ill check back

Wednesday, March 17, 2010 4:13:00 PM  
Anonymous nightsblood said...

interesting batch of obscurities this time, I'll check some of 'em out and try to post comments later

Thursday, March 18, 2010 8:07:00 AM  
Blogger bigfootkit said...

Marlene, i'm sorry, i wish i could help you out but Time Traveler is no longer active on the blogs, and as the Raw Honey was posted by him and not me, i'm afraid i know nothing about the band.
Any other visitors maybe able to help Marlene out with any info on Raw Honey?
MisterManiac, good to see you're still around mate, haven't seen your name for a while. Glad to help fill the gaps in your Warrior discography.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 6:30:00 PM  
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Hello. And Bye.

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Friday, April 02, 2010 10:32:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why does everyone remember Benny off Crossroads? Blofeld

Wednesday, April 07, 2010 2:49:00 PM  
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Wednesday, July 21, 2010 9:11:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lucifer is the work of one Denys Irving, (NOT Peter 'Lucifer' Walker) and was financed by Howard Marks A.K.A. 'Mr Nice'.
please visit:
http://myspace.com/denysirvinglucifer

Tuesday, February 01, 2011 11:02:00 AM  
Anonymous viagra said...

SABOTAGE is perfect actually I know enough about them, I'm so glad you putting this information in here because maybe a lot of people don't know about them, they were the most heavy metal band in that time.m10m

Thursday, March 10, 2011 2:50:00 PM  

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