mf] or [ds] or [mg]
I have been on the look-out for more Australian heavy-hitters ever since Vol21. It has been a long and enjoyable voyage of discovery and I have found an absolute ton of stuff. What has become very apparent is that after the new rock genre explosions of the 60s to early 70s, they moved with total gusto into the mid-late 70's with a prevailing hard rock / pub rock sound. Compare the number of bands like this to the number of Aussie progressive or psych acts and there is no doubt of it. Maybe the pioneering, farming and blue collar working man ethic of Australia has a lot to do with it, like in Detroit, guys just wanted to get down the pub after work, get drunk and rock out.
Another factor is 'Sharpie Rock', a fashion, attitude and straight-forward punkish sound that arose in the early seventies. A definite influence is of course one classic Australian band in particular which may well be the ultimate good-time, bluesey hard rock band of all time, so it's not too hard to see where the heritage may have started. Since posting this I have had an enlightening comment from a reader called 'proggy' and I just had to add it here: "It wasn't as a romantic picture as you've painted.... all I recall from those times was a sense of bleakness, long hot summers (different to today), little money. A lot of narrow minded squares and dunder-headed blokes with beards,tats and no brains....a bikey pub in the main street, Liverpool speedway, fights and drags between holdens,valiants and fords all the time ..... oh, and almost no appreciation for any music differing from the norm..... Sebastian Hardie grew up near where I live telling stories of being chased out of pubs by irate patrons.... and then come the 80's ....arrgh!!!! lol! - Skyhooks music was a good commentary on the times..."
The Day After The Sabbath 21: Uluru Rock. Also, John Moon and Ian John Ryan were both in Melbourne bloozers 'Buster Brown'. 'Need Your Love' is uplifting, singalong fun!
|Marcus Hook Roll Band|
|Stockley See Mason Band|
Same See had been an early member of Sherbet before making his name with Flying Circus, Fraternity, Greg Quill's Southern Cross & later on John Farnham's band, Goanna, Zarzoff Brothers & again Brod Smith.
Add Glyn Mason's pedigree & it's very apparent what a talented band we have her. Glyn came to Australia from NZ with The Rebels (formerly Larry's Rebels), then quickly found himself part of the Chain line-up that recorded Live & Live Again. After replacing Jeff St John in Copperwine for a short time he formed the groundbreakinbg country rock group Home who recorded 2 albums, then he joined Mike Rudd in Ariel to share vocals & writing duties. He was also a prominent performer at the Andy Durant Memorial Concert."
A number of important artists played, including Kevin Borich, a young Rose Tattoo (huge in Germany; I was lucky enough to see them at Wacken Open Air in 2007) and a Sydney band called Feather, who feature as track 6 here. Feather was a short-lived development from well-regarded hard rock/prog-psychers Blackfeather, who's killer GTK tv show Stones cover appeared back on Vol8. UPDATE: I have recently been reading a great book about Aussie rock history called 'Blood, Sweat & Beers' by Murray Engleheart and I found these comments regarding the Paramatta Jail gig: "Chris Turner [Rose Tattoo]: 'The first thing I remember is that the actual prisoners were telling the screws to fuck off, and the screws did because they [the inmates] were lifers. They dragged us backstage at the concert hall and gave us some home brew, which just knocked my bloody tits off! Made out of potato peelings and stuff in old Fanta and Coke cans and they were smoking dope.'
|Angry Anderson of Rose Tattoo|
Chris Turner: 'They were showing us all their tattoos and stuff. When they closed the big gates onto where the lifers are, that was just horrible. You can imagine it: it doesn't matter if you commit one murder or ten murders because there's no future once you're a lifer. That was the scary part that I found. I thought it wouldn't matter if this guy throttled me right here and now. It wouldn't matter to him at all.
Somehow a show at Adelaide's Yatala Prison had been far more intimidating. Chris Turner: 'They didn't laugh, those prisoners. They were serioulsy heavy'.
Angry Anderson [Buster Brown, Rose Tatto]: 'The first time we arrived at Yatala the superintendant said, 'We've got a big surprise waiting for you', and and we walked out and half the audience were bald which meant you had a room full of people who looked just like me - all tattooed and bald - which was quite a frightening experience'."
What I do know is that this appears to be their only album release. It is released on ‘Lazer Records’ and as it is produced by Sherbet producer Richard Lush (which suggests that someone was prepared to throw some money behind them) and the hairstyles were fashioned by a Faces fan. Also special mention is made of Cold Chisel and Angels producer Mark Opitz for ‘all his help’.
Musically U-Turn remind me of 70s UK good-time rock bands and the album does have some catchy tunes such as ‘I Like It’ and ‘Lady of Light’. Other than guitarist Shane Pacey, who composed or co-composed the album with other band members, the rest of the band do not seem to have gone on to any band of note. Pacey did re-emerged a decade later in the blues band Bondi Cigars."
Drouyn', which are more in the heavy psych vein and I'll include on the next aussie comp which will return to the psych. In 1976, just before moving to Melbourne, they released the 'Thunderbird' LP and I think the track 'Crystal Country Gorge' can be see as their career masterpiece; it has the riffs of the Accadacca generation but it's a long-ish track that also retains some early 70s psych heaviness and subtlety, making it one of my faves in this set. After some line-up changes, guitarist Bob Spencer exited for Skyhooks (later on this comp), and vocalist Mark Evans joined, having just been ejected from AC/DC. We'll return to these guys for the final track...
|Taste - Knights of Love|
|Bullet - Mover|
01. Geeza - Too Much Goin' On Here (1977)
from album 'streetlife'
02. Desert Rat - Need Your Love (1978)
from album 'home from the front'
03. Fox - Times Come to Change (1974)
from album 'what the hell is going on'
04. Marcus Hook Roll Band - Goodbye Jane / Ape Man (1973)
from album 'tales of old grand-daddy'
05. The Stockley See Mason Band - The Last One To Know (1979)
from album 'beg steal or borrow'
06. Feather - Here With Me (1978)
from compilation 'canned rock (live at parramatta jail, 1978)'
07. U-Turn - Small Talk (1977)
from album 'living in the city'
08. Stevie Wright - Black Eyed Bruiser (1975)
from album 'black eyed bruiser'
09. Finch - Crystal Country Gorge (1976)
from album 'thunderbird'
10. Taste - Witches Brew (1977)
from album 'knights of love'
11. Skyhooks - Revolution [US Single Version] (1975)
from album "living in the 70's"
12. Redhouse - I Got Love (1976)
from album 'one more squeeze'
13. Bullet - Mover (1975)
14. Contraband - To Drunk To Know (1979)
from album 'contraband'
Thanks for listening! Rich