This week we’ll take it for read that I listened to Nile and Gojira!
Rollins Band – Weight I’ve been in the mood for working through the Henry Rollins catalogue after seeing the Hank-related posts over at My Left Thumb. I’ve listened to the End of Silence loads but I’m not hugely familiar with the rest of his career. Thought I’d start here as it’s one of his better known releases and I really enjoyed it. It’s got all the righteous anger you’d expect but with a really funky, spacey feel too. Standout tracks so far are Civilised, Disconnect and Liar but I’ll be coming back to this I’m sure.
Saxon – The Inner Sanctum This album followed Saxon’s appearance on UK TV’s Get Your Act Together in which promoter/manager Harvey Goldsmith attempted to revive their declining fortunes. I personally doubt whether his involvement or the publicity were directly responsible for improving the band’s situation but the NWOBHM stalwarts certainly sound galvanised on this superb album. I think the inference that they were dated and treading water was all they needed to pull out the stops. Get it up ye!
Iron Maiden – The Final Frontier and Brave New World Two modern day classics that easily hold their own with the older albums. Been listening to Frontier a lot this year but I don’t revisit Brave New World enough and I really enjoyed giving it a spin this week. I actually wasn’t that bothered about them reuniting at the time as I was such a fan of Bruce’s solo work but this album easily changed my mind. It’s ageing pretty well too.
Wendy O. Williams – W.O.W. Produced by Gene Simmons who also provided Bass in the guise of Reginald Van Helsing! It also features performances and songwriting contributions from Paul Stanley, Eric Carr, Ace Frehley and Vinnie Vincent. Wendy is on fine gravelly vocal form although the whole thing sounds a bit unfinished to me and there are a few uninspired ploddy tracks. It’s My Life is a brilliant song and this is well worth investigating if you like 80s KISS. Wendy’s previous album (with the Plasmatics) Coup D’Etat is much better though.
The Plasmatics – Metal Priestess EP The first time I’ve listened to this and it blew me away. A real punk attitude but played with an Unleashed in the East guitar attack. What’s not to like about that?
Jethro Tull – Broadsword and the Beast Not one of the better known Tull albums although it was big in Germany. This always goes down well, it’s got a great mystical fantasy vibe to it that is right up my street. A lot more mature and sophisticated than the album title or cover suggest! Now fetch my Broadsword, minion!
Richard Thompson – Mock Tudor Listening to a lot of RT at the moment. Think it must be the time of the year or something. This is one of my favourites, a collection of vignettes about suburbia. A great mix of styles on here. It’s hard to think of a guitarist so equally adept at both electric and acoustic guitar. He rages on Hard on Me and is exquisite on The Sights and Sounds of London. Folk Overload!
KISS – Destroyer Listening to the original in preparation for Destroyer Resurrected although I didn’t really have to bother because this is imprinted on my DNA. A great album for sure, but not the towering classic it’s often made out to be. I can think of many KISS albums I would rate higher than this. Interested to see what the new remixing does for it.