I went on my very first record shopping jaunt of 2013 and turned up this little beauty for 99p at the excellent Record Fayre in the Trongate, Glasgow (which has the bonus of a shop Labrador! Much clapping and wagging ensued).
This is the second of three Praying Mantis singles released around the time of the band’s debut album Time Tells No Lies. If, like me, you bought Rock Candy’s reissue of Time Tells No Lies then you’ll know that it features all the songs (A and B-Sides) from the first and third of those three singles either as part of the album proper (Cheated) or as bonus tracks (everything else). So this 12” completes my collection of Time Tells No Lies-era Praying Mantis and is a great NWOBHM collectible!
The A-Side of The Soundhouse Tapes 2 is the excellent Captured City which is easily one of the band’s greatest tunes: a great title, catchy chorus and ladles of Thin Lizzy worship. The B-Side has two tracks, The Ripper and Johnny Cool. The Ripper starts off with some great riffs but feels a bit limp. Johnny Cool is better but the guitar work is still the star of the show and makes both tracks worthwhile. Excitingly, both these tracks also seem pretty hard to find anywhere else. An essential addition to my burgeoning NWOBHM collection.
I wonder where they got the idea for the title from…