Saturday, February 28, 2009

Fat Daddy –Roll Daddy Roll

Fat Daddy –Roll Daddy Roll/Help Me –Bootleg BL 262 (1976 Aus)

Fat Daddy were a Melbourne Band and big favourite on the Sharpie scene. They were known to wear face masks for live performances:
“We used to wear these grotesque masks. We were anti the whole pretty boy/satin/Sherbert thing. We wanted to be the ugliest band in the world..."(Max WellaTop Fellas).
This is the first of two singles released on Bootleg (the other being Fat Funky Rock And Rollwhich I need!!). Roll Daddy Roll is a no-nonsense-straight-ahead Boogie/Glam piece in a similar world to Buster Brown or The Angels.
The band consisted of Max Vella, Mick Stillo, Tony Catz and Carl Stanley. They later merged with Ken Murdoch (Ex Taste; also on the Bootleg label) and became Texas. Texas were pretty big on the live scene from 1976-79 and released 4 singles and an album in a rockin’ bluesy ZZ Top style.

Hear a full version of Roll Daddy Roll

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Booby Trap –Kelly, Grace and Sally

Booby Trap –Kelly, Grace and Sally/ The Hooker –Ariola 13 336 (1974 NL)

If it wasn’t for the that fact that Booby Trap appeared for about 30 seconds on Van Oekel’s Discohoek (a zany Dutch TV-show back then), then we wouldn’t even have known of Booby Trap’s existence in the first place! Bass guitarist Albert Schierbeek was a sound engineer and later guitarist with Dutch rock-legends The Bintangs (his brother Harry played drums with them all through the seventies). Fronted by the fine voice and Jagger-like aesthetics of vocalist Jan Rijbroek, Kelly, Grace and Kelly sports a very snappy and catchy Sweet- like tune with ancillary handclaps and ample guitar-riffage. While Jan Rijbroek seems to extol the merits of a ménage a trois on the A side, the B side finds him imploring his girlfriend not to go on the game! The Hooker features a mean slide guitar riff and falls somewhere between The Flamin' GrooviesSlow Death and Shot In The Head (Haffy’s Whiskey Sour/ Savoy Brown) albeit in a more poppy vein.

Note: Kelly, Grace and Sally is the opening track on the compilation “Clap Your Hands And Stamp Your Feet” to be released on the 20th of April on Excelsior -more details and full track listing soon!!!

Hear an edit of Kelly, Grace and Sally and The Hooker.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Kenny Pickett –Got A Gun

Kenny Pickett –Got A Gun/ Same –Fbeat PRO 2 (1980 UK)

Recorded around the time when ex Creation members Kenny Pickett and Eddie Philips contributed the great Teacher Teacher on Rockpile's Seconds Of Pleasure LP. It seems that this promo only release was the only other opportunity they got on Fbeat. Kenny wrote the lyrics, Eddie wrapped the tune around the words and the results recall Brotherly Love’s Public Enemy No 1 with a bit of the chorus of Sweet’s Alexander Graham Bell thrown in. The sound is part Glam, part Powerpop and part late 70s Squeeze. It’s just a shame that Kenny and Eddie weren’t able to exploit the semi-success of Teacher Teacher with more tunes like this one as Got A Gun proves they had more to offer in a Powerpop Glam crossover mode.

Hear a full version version of Got A Gun here:

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Cut Loose: The Stud Leather story

Cut Loose: The Stud Leather story

Cut Loose is undeniably one of the most amazing timeless punked-out singles ever released. The fact that I have up to now posted two reviews on this amazing single, at least shows how much I care about this particular monster, but I know that I am not alone in my obsession and many of you share my enthusiasm for this fab slab of plastic.

Recently Roger Cook (who sang and co-wrote the track) got in touch and now for the first time here is the story behind this Killermost of all killer singles .

The band was formed in 1972 when Roger Cook met Alan Kirkham at IPC Magazines in London. Roger was a writer and Alan was an Art Editor.The band’s formation had a slightly different aim from what Cut Loose could lend us to believe:

Roger: Basically I'd always fancied myself as a songwriter and Kirkham and I started out writing stuff more like “Yes…during their Fragile period", which was a long distance from the way we eventually ended up sounding. We would write 7 minute singles but I thought that these were never going to get played…

The line up was Roger Cook on lead vocals, Alan Kirkham on guitar, Hayden Gridley bass, Johnny Aldrich on drums and Dickie Graves on backing vocals. Dickie seems to have been quite a character:

Roger: Dickie was a talented and eccentric individual who I recruited while he was dancing on a table in a HABITAT!!! We used to drive my Trans Am down his street in St Mary's Cray with him sitting on the bonnet dressed up as a robot. We both needed attention-from an audience-and probably medically as well…

Q: What were you trying to do with Cut Loose?

Roger: I just wanted to do something which was the total opposite of cerebral. I was (and still am) one of the most optimistic people I know. I just wanted to rant, explode with enthusiasm and throw in some Dr. Hook for good measure because I had just seen them in concert and was smitten.

Q: How did the track come about?

Roger: Let's just do a 12 bar in E!" said I and I wrote it in my bathroom. Kirkham figured out the guitar. Graves chipped in with parts of the chorus. The drumming (which actually makes the track work) all came from Johnny who had had some fame with a group called the Wranglers (Got onto Top of the Pops but nothing came of 'em) He also worked at IPC as an artist.

To my ears, Cut Loose not only sounds deranged, but also sounds more than just a tad drug fuelled…

Roger: It was just pure enthusiasm....we didn't think about anything.....The explosion at the end is a hand grenade sound effect supplied by De Lane Lea where the track was recorded in Soho."

Hear Cut Loose here:

Q: How did you end up getting signed?

Roger: I got some encouragement from Micky Most at RAK but he thought we were just loud and proud. Eventually someone recommended Clive Stanhope at DART. He loved Cut Loose straight out of the box and put it out. Tony Blackburn played it, Fluff Freeman supported it.
We were never told where Cut Loose was released. I had no idea it was released in Germany or Japan for example. We learned many years after the event that it had been a success in France with the dance crowd. We never received a penny in any royalties...

Q: What happened after Cut Loose?
Roger: The band broke up immediately after Cut Loose and I released a DART single under my own name Roger Noel Cook called Slick Go-Getter. Slick Go-Getter was really something I wrote to sum up what an ego-tistic fellow I had become...Jonathan King liked Slick Go-Getter and I now know was gay!

To these ears Slick Go-Getter is an enjoyable upbeat number, reminding me of West Coast 60s Dunhill style Folk Rock with “swinging” London lyrics.

Hear Slick Go-Getter here:

I’ll let Roger fill everyone in with what happened next, it is quite the tale…

Roger: The reason the band was doomed from the outset was I had already become financially very successful by age of 21. I already had an E-type (which I mentioned in Slick Go-Getter). I was a successful writer (Tom & Jerry and Dr.Who if you can believe it) I'd sold a pop poster concept to IPC. I had a leather clothing company called FORESKIN LTD and Warner Bros asked me to be the youngest ever CEO of their Publishing Division when I was 24. Basically I was doing better than any of the guys topping the charts and I could see much more moola coming my way. It was music or money. I chose the latter but my music days were to return. Here's how:

I became one of the Producers ( along with Paul Raymond and Adam Cole) of the massively successful ELECTRIC BLUE soft porn series which is in fact the best selling video series of all time. One of my inputs as Producer was I had to write and record all of the dozens of rock songs which appeared on the ELECTRIC BLUE soundtracks. To date there are 200,000,000 ELECTRIC BLUE tapes and CDs in global circulation so effectively I have sold more units of my music than the other (more famous) Roger Cook and (I'm told) more than Michael Jackson by quite a margin.

I formed a recording band called BROADSWORD to cut ELECTRIC BLUE-THE MUSIC...and another band called CROSSFIRE to cut OUT OF THE BLUE...the rock tracks from those compilations are still played on the PLAYBOY channel in the States and have been for the last 28 years...amazing really...Finally ELECTRIC BLUE-THE MOVIE was released in cinemas around 1980-ish and was a big success in the West End and I performed a number in the movie called BROOKLYN BARS...I Can't find a copy of the movie...It was released alongside our regular monthly ELECTRIC BLUE releases on video but I haven't spotted a copy any where...Pornsters tend to keep their stuff!

Er...that's it...born porned...ended up rich...Doncha love Life?

Thanks a million to Roger for telling the Cut Loose story and its aftermath!

Here’s a recent photo of Roger Cook in his Villa in Spain.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Whistle –When The Lights Go Out On Broadway

Whistle –When The Lights Go Out On Broadway/Lincoln Lullabies –York YR 209 (1974 UK)

This is the elusive 2nd single by Whistle on the York label. It’s perhaps not quite as endearing as The Party Must Be Over (see review May 12th 2008) but it’s an altogether more ambitious arrangement featuring orchestral stabs and strings over a full fronted guitar driven attack very much in the mould of a Bob Ezrin production from the period. The track shares a similar drawn out intro to their first single and rocks out, but the chorus doesn’t quite have the same sing-along effect as the chord sequence is quite monotonous throughout.

Hear a full version of When The Lights Go Out On Broadway

Monday, February 02, 2009

Renegade –My Revolution

Renegade –A Little Rock ‘N’ Roll/ My Revolution –Dawn DNS 1067 (1974 UK)

A Tremendous Stompin’ Chompin’ Monster –My Revolution just guzzles all and sundry along its hungry path. The actual A side is pretty hot too, taken at a higher velocity, it sports a mean pair of cutting lead guitars. No surprise here as the guitar-men in question are Pip Witcher and Roger Lomas (EX –The Eggy/ Sorrows and future Zips members).

My Revolution was comped on Glitter From The Litter Bin many moons ago…

As an ongoing dubious marketing exercise, this is a spare copy that is about to go up on ebay! Well I hadn’t covered it here so far –had I?

Hear edits of My Revolution and A Little Rock 'N' Roll