Month: August 2017

ARTICLE ABOUT Rainbow FROM New Musical Express, May 29, 1976

A great, and in parts, very funny review of one of the greatest albums in rock history. The journalist could not at this time imagine Blackmore`s Night, and neither could the rest of us. But the medieval experimentation or maybe we should call it flirtation, started around this time for Mr. Blackmore.
I don`t know why the title of the album (“Rising”) isn`t mentioned in the article, but maybe he didn`t have the cover at the time of his review or something.
And, I must also say, that this version of the band was one of the best ones. A really rocking band full of talented musicians. Unfortunately, three of the five musicians recording this album is not with us today. But what a legacy they left behind. Just playing on “Stargazer” is enough to be remembered forever. What a melody! What a song!

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Blackmore`s Rainbow
Oyster (Purple)

By Bob Edmands

Ritchie Blackmore, the world`s loudest musician, sees an amazing new role for himself – as a medieval minstrel.
Hard to believe, right? Like Lou Reed campaigning in support of Real Ale: or George Harrison opting for atheism; or Tony Blackburn playing music; or Bob Harris shouting.
Well there it is in black and white. “An interest in medieval music… reflected in the Rainbow sound,” says the press handout. “Many of the songs make use of medieval modes.”
You gotta be joking. If Ritchie had to get the Sword out of the Stone, you can be sure he`d use a pneumatic drill.
Blackmore pours out the notes like burning oil from battlements. The band`s menace suggests the rack rather than the maypole. Their unhinged attack is enough to dissolve the monasteries all over again. The sound is fat, powerful and brutish, like Henry the Eight. Domesday Book? Doomsday machine, more like.
Medieval modes or not, the important thing is that with one album, Blackmore has transcended anything he did with Deep Purple.
It was Blackmore, with Ian Paice, who kept Deep Purple from being Shallow Sepia. Paice is sadly still with Purple, but on hand (and feet) is the great Cozy Powell, hammering away like the sort of octopus that could inspire a new Peter Benchley bestseller.
The combination is the hottest heavy in years. Lots of snarling riffs snapping at you, compelling, ferocious presence.

Blackmore is never gonna be a new Hendrix. He`s not into that sort of frenzied inspiration. It`s a sense of dramatic effect and dynamics that he`s built his reputation on, and those instincts have rarely been put to better use than here.
“Stargazer” is the track that says it all, taking up half of one side, with a satanic majesty and a perverse epic grandeur that make it a classic.
Blackmore turns in one of his most stunning solos on “Stargazer”, precise, calculated, soaring and shimmering over the melee. And the song thunders for the exits with the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra taking up the riff. Well done Koncert Meister Fritz Sonneleitner, you and the boys sound just like a rampaging synthesiser. It`s amazing what they can do with orchestras these days.
Not content with one goldplated monster cut, Rainbow turn to “A Light in the Dark,” the sort of crazed, flat-out blitzkrieg the Purple tried for on “Machine Head”. When this baby rumbles out of the speakers, there`s not a grey cell left intact within a five-mile radius. No matter. Who needs grey cells to review this kind of mind-mangler?
Rainbow is different to Purple, and it`s not just the range of musical colours they produce. Most of those are varying shades of black, anyway. What this band have created is a bad guys` mutant of orchestral rock, the perfect antidote to the pious mysticism of Yes and other yesmen. Proof at last that rock music doesn`t have to be twee to be ambitious.

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I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of New Musical Express also contains articles/interviews with these people: Average White Band, Chuck Berry, Rolling Stones, Todd Rundgren, Steve Miller Band, Streetwalkers, Gram Parsons, Dr. Hook, Joe Higgs, Sonny Rollins.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 15 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

 

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ARTICLE ABOUT Thin Lizzy FROM New Musical Express, May 22, 1976

Much has been said about Phil Lynott`s talent. Not undeserved as he even managed to get a postive review in NME. Not a lot of hard rock artists can brag about that.
So here goes. Enjoy!

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Every so often, NME is proud and privileged to present an ecstatic album review; here is one such…

Dizzy over Lizzy

Thin Lizzy: Jailbreak (Vertigo).

By Phil McNeill

Ever since Thin Lizzy followed up their sole hit, “Whisky In The Jar”, back in `73 (plugged remorselessly into the charts by good old Kid Jensen), with the ingenious “Randolph`s Tango”, it`s been obvious that Phil Lynott was something special.
After much chopping and changing, he established a permanent band in time for last year`s wondrous “Fighting” album, featuring one of the best singles of `75, “Wild One” – and now, after a year together, Thin Lizzy are possibly the best British band (i.e. the best band anywhere) since Free.
For a start, they`re a four-piece, which is slightly better than being a trio or a quintet in the perfection stakes. Secondly, it`s a guitar band – no messing pianos, mellotrons or saxes. And finally, all their material comes from one source within the band.
How I survived the past few years without the Quaife era Kinks, the Experience, Free or their equivalent is a mystery – as Lynott says in “Running Back”, “When they say it`s over, it`s not over: there`s still the pain,” and I`ve been wearing out “Highway” like a hole-in-the-heart victim gasping for oxygen. But at last I can lead a complete life again.
The problem is, how to get it across to you, dear reader.

No offence meant, but you might be one of the 10,000,000 people who tried to get tickets for the Stones, and how can I possibly prefer small fry like Lizzy to such superstars as Jagger (or Bowie or Elton, for that matter)?
Briefly, Lizzy communicate, an impossibility for an artist whose stage appearances are necessarily exercises in manipulation and whose records are inevitably straining for self-justification.
Deification equals death, and the sensitive artist either spurns it or is destroyed; only the narcissus survives. Fly away Jimi, fly away Paul – you can still dig The Kinks at the music hall.
So what moves in the grooves? To dispense with the formalities: the personalities are Brian Downey, Dubliner drummer, sturdily anonymous; Scott Gorham, Los Angelean guitarist, casually elegant; Brian Robertson, Glaswegian guitar slinger, sullenly deranged; and Lynott, Dubliner as in Joyce, singer-/bassist/writer, a street gangster with soul.
Onstage Downey`s playing wears an erratic air, Robertson`s seems dangerous, and Gorham`s fragile, but somehow it all comes off very neat, with Lynott the stabilising influence.
Naturally, this uncertainty doesn`t come over on record: they`re well-drilled, and everything, right down to the solos, is unerringly relevant to the song.
So at the risk of devaluing the other guys` contributions, “Jailbreak” is best looked at as totally Lynott`s conception, since there isn`t a single note that doesn`t appear deliberate and considered, with the meticulous precision of Free`s greatest achievements.

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Lynott`s brilliance is easiest expressed through his words, which superficially lean a little too heavily on images of violence, but which add up to a romantic vision of freedom through self-respect, earthy, poetic and very Irish.
This vision runs through the title track, “Jailbreak” (“Me and the boys don`t like it, so we`re getting up and going down”), a tale of urban desperadoes; “Angel From The Coast”, which seems to be about a murder that takes place unheeded in a junk and booze ridden tenement block, like a surreal version of “Suicide”, the stage fave track on “Fighting”.
“Warriors”, is about a kind of vengeful Silver Surfer; “The Boys Are Back In Town” (“Guess who just got back today – them wild-eyed boys who`ve been away… Friday night they`ll be dressed to kill, down at Dino`s bar and grill, the drinks will flow and the blood will spill”); “Fight Or Fall”, a subdued, world-weary call to rebellion; “Cowboy”, about a homesick rodeo rider (“I am just a cowboy, lonesome on the trail / Lord I`m just thinking `bout a certain female”); and “Emerald” is seemingly about a medieval massacre – either an invasion of Ireland or a people`s uprising.
Musically the LP is equally wide-ranging, but similarly unified, from the most delicate to the most attacking, distinguished by Lynott`s lilting vocals and the guitarists` sympathetic, rippling lines and rough-cut harmonies.
“Running Back” would find a welcome on Van Morrison`s “Moondance”, and there are at least five tracks here as good as anything I`ve heard for ages.
“Jailbreak” is a rare treasure.

Thin Lizzy

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of New Musical Express also contains articles/interviews with these people: Nils Lofgren, Patti Smith, Elvis, David Essex, Strapps, Steve Miller Band, Lee Garrett, Kiss.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail, if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be around or upwards of 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT Kiss FROM New Musical Express, May 22, 1976

Kiss didn`t get a good review in NME after their first tour in England. The journalist wanted to like them but appreciated their albums more than the live version of the band. It didn`t matter for Kiss, as they were used to bad reviews and built a very successful career, despite their critics, that lasts until this day. They are still a very successful live band and, as they say, definitely got the last laugh.
What is interesting about this review is the praise Mr. Bell gives to the drummer Peter Criss. Many Kiss fans argue, even today, about if he is a “good” drummer or not. Bell gives him credit for his his style, and I personally agree with this. A very important influence of the Kiss sound was Peter`s jazz-style drumming and also his voice. Without Peter I think Kiss would have been a poorer band on record and may not even have got as big as they did.
Here`s a toast to the cat-man! You may be retired these days, but the true Kiss-fans miss you!

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Young folks having fun

Kiss
Hammersmith

By Max Bell

The lady on the door was most persuasive. “Would you take a Kiss mask? Please… go on have a couple, we`re trying to get rid of them”. I obliged and made my way upstairs to the bar which was shut, in keeping with the Odeon`s policy of guessing the average age of the night crowd. In this instance they were right. The audience being mostly composed of young folk covered in thick Kiss copy make up, parents with their offspring, haughty queens in tight trousers that left little to the imagination and rather bemused looking punters who`d come along on the surmise that we`ve all heard so much about Kiss that they must be worth seeing once.
At the top of the stairs belligerent and tanked up youths ripped off large promo cardboard cut outs and posters while good natured Sturico men tried to pin them back to the railings. Stray were finishing their set to much applause and the D.J. cranked up his heavy rock collection as unknown happenings took place behind the Safety Curtain.
Kiss are due on at 9 p.m. but owing to the exigencies of G.L.C. fire regulations they don`t make it until 9.40; the natives, not knowing the impossibility of trying to persuade irate officials that fire balls on side stage are O.K. fun, are understandably restless. The excellent Keith Peacock from Casablanca passes on the information and tells me that Kiss had played a blinder at Birmingham the night before. Still, it seems ironic that a band with such a cast iron S.M. reputation, that you wouldn`t let your kids within a thousand miles of, are stymied by the safety rules that operate with regard to large concert venues. Could have something to do with the fact that anyone sitting twenty feet from the stage stood a fair chance of having their eyebrows singed.

Kiss and the Dresden fire storm are synonymous in… uh… heavy metal circles.
Jonathan Richman slurped off the turntable and suddenly the lights had dimmed and these four munster figures lurched on. Wall to wall amps and an elevated drum kit flanked by candles and police sirens loomed into view. Whoomph… zonk… the famous Kiss are off. They are about the loudest band I`ve ever heard. The noise is excruciating, a warped wave of wattage cascades over every inch of the hall, only trouble is the opening two songs are unintelligible. Paul Stanley, he of the Marc Bolan curls, star on eye, is front man. Their opening gambit is to stand in line and then leap into the air. Three guys in Marvel comic strip costumes and a drummer who thinks he`s a pussy cat. Fascinating.
I really can`t believe my eyes, or ears. Kiss are zipped into their volume saturated time warp with all the trappings that British glam rock made redundant at least two years ago. Platform boots, silver epaulettes, lipstick, the whole movie.
So far so funny. I like some of their records in the way that I like any kind of trash music that has no pretensions to being sophisticated. While the aura always seems contrived it is occasionally amusing. Everyone is susceptible to a bit of hype and chintzy glamour so I`m waiting for things to liven up. Y`know Kiss aren`t Yes or Johann Sebastian`s four younger brothers but people tell me what good musicians they are underneath that hideous black and white cake. The bands I`d reckoned they owed most to, The MC5, Dolls, Stooges all had a lot extra to offer besides Power On destruction. The last vinyl jungle, `Destroyer`, (produced by Alice Cooper`s buddy Bob Ezrin) was an indication they might be moving a few rungs up the ladder. Start off crass boys and the let`s see what you can do.

`Flaming Youth` stun guns the auditorium. Stanley, Ace Frehley and Gene Simmons of the Seven Samurai top knot are still leaping up and down or striking guitar hero poses. I like the song cos it`s dumb but under the kerosene riffing I don`t detect too much inspiration. Maybe Kiss are on a bad night or maybe if you took away the Marshalls and the image they`d have nothing left.
On one level their music doesn`t really matter. Kiss stand or fall on the quality of their much vaunted theatrics and their manner of presentation. I`m a trifle miffed that nothing other than fractured ear drums has yet left them there boards. Stanley starts one of many obnoxious raps. “This is going to be one of those rock`n`roll parties, I can feel it London. We`re gonna get this place `Hotter Than Hell`.”
He and Frehley fuzz and masticate lead licks. Stanley dons a Fire and Brimstone Chief`s helmet and Simmons leers outrageously for the camera men then shakes his Kamakazi bun like a poodle after a bath. Chord breaks which have very little to do with music, and never ever rubbed shoulders with the word tune, drown out the vocals.
The sirens spin to muffled cheering and then Simmons staggers over to his candelabra, selects the wax and ignites a mouth full of lighter fuel. It is simultaneously the most contrived piece of overkill imaginable, actually performed very sheepishly and utterly lacking in intimidation. Alright it doesn`t matter that Arthur Brown did this in 1966 or that stage props are excusable as a means to entertaining but you expect to be pinned to your seat in amazement, at least hold your breath for a few seconds, but the deed is merely feeble. Over in a flash. Puh!

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The girls in front of me with Kiss scrawled on their cheeks, and who can`t be a day over twelve, aren`t that impressed either. Under all the guff I got the feeling that Kiss were condescending to the audience. Give `em what they want and then put the takings in the bank quick. Their moves are professional enough only to gratify the noise lust of the lowest common denominator open to rock. I don`t care that they wear their kinetics so far out you know they haven`t got a single original lick, but once the energy graph dissipates and you begin to study their ability to even play what simple ideas they do possess, the shortcomings are tremendous.
For starters they aint even sexy. Ace Frehley moves with the approximate grace of a third degree advanced numbskull. A guitar by rote. It`s no surprise to learn that he exists in a permanent heat haze of zonked vacancy. Simmons` bass playing is basic, and that`s being kind. He played a one note solo which was good. The audience voice their approbation accordingly. He sticks his tongue out about seven inches like a proboscis but him and butterflies aren`t too compatible. It probably stands him in good stead for various sexual practises though.
Stanley`s in between raps become more tedious. There`s plenty talk about rock`n`roll, all the songs feature those much maligned words when the lyrics need a bit of credibility. Alan Freed and Bo Diddley have got a lot to answer for.
Frehley plays a solo that reminded me of visiting the dentist. At the end of same a flame scuds into the front row, exit one owner of a good stall seat in a puff of smoke.

The stormtroopers blast into what is recognisably `Nothing To Lose`. The title is on the nail. Kiss drench the sacks with no regard for variation or taste, the material is indistinguishable. `Nothing To Lose` pummels like nothing you`ve ever heard before into `Shout It Out Loud`, a veritable scumbag of a number. The audience are still pretty sedate. None of the seat mangling and whole scale freak out they are purported to wreak in darkest Manhattan.
What with the gear and the noise and the monotony they remind one of vintage Slade except they aren`t as competent. Only drummer Peter Criss looks like he could get his stash together doing another kind of music. Besides his cat whiskers are cute. He has something recognisable as style. All that nonsense about stalking his prey as he flails the skins. A plane crash that turned him into a sabre toothed tiger whose mother weaned him to recovery. “I must have been a cat in an earlier life”. Says Criss. Guess that`s more than likely.
Things are beginning to happen down there. Simmons is now playing a two note bass solo and chewing on a blood capsule at the same time. What virtuosity. Weenies squeal in terror as a liberal splattering of red saliva drips slowly onto his feet. It`s grizzly enough to make anyone with an ounce of sensibility leave their lunch on the person in front of them. They begin something that sounds like `Schools Out` speeded up. Those rip-offs are right out front, they should be paying royalties to every H.M. division on the planet.
Criss gets his moment of glory as is the way with drummers. Lights are vibrating. He could take a few hints from Albert Bouchard on how to make the drum solo humorous. He hits each piece of the kit. These soldiers really have their act together.
The show hit the bottom most pits from thereafter. “Are you with us tonight,” says Stanley, and starts rubbing himself off. Real subtle. “How many people here like to get stoned?” The girls in front of me apparently do. “Do you believe in rock`n`roll?” Jesus Christ if he went through that routine once he did it four times. It does however get the kids on their feet.

They do `Fire House` or was it `Cold Gin`? The resultant sound was rough. Sophisticated they ain`t. If you`ve ever had someone drag new sandpaper up the inside of your leg you`ll know what I mean. The drum kit hits the roof, literally, a device that Earth, Wind and Fire are also partial to.
Stanley goes on about how cool the audience is which is much appreciated. Kiss are pleased with the flak they get back.
Finally they do `Detroit Rock City`, the very passable opening to `Destroyer`. Live they muff the dual lead runs, even the chord change they borrowed from The Cult. It seems plausible that they are using tapes as some of the time voices or guitars emerge even when no one is near a microphone or has his hands on the relevant fretboard.
After that the hall erupts. Three encores including the mundane `Rock`n`Roll All Nite And Party Every Day`. Confetti pours over the lads, all hell lets loose and I haven`t even told you about the dry ice, the strobes, the mirror ball and the exploding neutron pods.
Look, I want to like Kiss. Their albums reveal they have something to offer but on this showing, live, in person, stalking before the people who pay their wages, they cannot be taken seriously. When the shit hits the fans Kiss have nothing except the clothes they stand up in and their volume controls. Every effect they use is someone else`s cliche taken to the furthest possible point. They aren`t bizarre, they`re obvious and hideously self-indulgent.
Outside pavement touts are flogging cheap trash, scarves, badges at extortionate prices (the official programme was a pound!). The thin end of the wedge, this senseless rock capitalism. Thank Christ they shut the bar. I went home and threw up.

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I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of New Musical Express also contains articles/interviews with these people: Nils Lofgren, Patti Smith, Elvis, David Essex, Strapps, Steve Miller Band, Lee Garrett.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 15 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT Genesis FROM New Musical Express, May 15, 1976

Quite incredible to think that Phil Collins as a 25-year old was on his fifth American tour. Amazing! Personally, I didn`t even know what to do with my life at that age. But I guess it is easier when you have a lot of talent, meet the right people at the right time and live in exactly the right place. And more. Because there are a lot of stars that need to align for this to happen to anyone.
Certainly an interesting article to read, so enjoy!

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Can little people rock `n` roll?

The Great Sequel to Can Public School Boys Rock`n`roll?

With reference to GENESIS, Prof. STEVE CLARKE answers a question that`s been worrying the diminutive all the world over.

It`s all a question of size, really. Seems that almost everywhere you go in America there`s the biggest something or other. Take New Orleans for instance, the deep, deep heart of Dixie, which boasts America`s, or quite possibly the world`s, biggest indoor sports complex, the Super-dome – a building that outsizes Houston`s Astro-dome by several square-feet or whatever.
Move up several states north to St Louis (the `s` is stressed), Missouri, the very centre of America itself, where the old Mississippi (itself high in longest-river chart) seems omnipresent and you`re confronted with what is apparently the world`s largest manmade structure – an absurd arch which straddles the riverfront like the perimeter of some gargantuan disembodied spoon.
The Arch is monstrously pointless, other than being a tourist attraction and symbolic of the city`s geographical position as “Gateway To The West”.
St Louis also has the world`s largest Holiday Inn complex, a minute part of which is being occupied tonight, this Thursday in late April, by Genesis, that most English of English rock bands who`re approximately two thirds of the way through their fifth American tour and not a little knackered.
And just continuing this bit about size, brings us to Phil Collins, whose amazing transformation from Drummer With The Group to Lead Singer on their last album, “A Trick Of The Tail”, represented something of a triumph for the little guy.
Collins` physical stature cuts a radical contrast with the St Louis Arch and everything (and isn`t everything?) big in America.
Moreover he`s no punk, like the other little guys in rock, but a 25 year-old musician with an extremely endearing temperament.

I remember my first, rather uncomfortable meeting with Genesis two or so years back when I wrongly came away with the impression that the boys in the band were, with the exception of Honest Phil, somewhat coldly diffident individuals. Others in the music biz would agree, saying, “Oh Phil, yeah, he`s all right.”
When I bump into Collins in a lift (or should I say elevator?) in the world`s biggest Holiday Inn complex, he`s genuinely friendly and in the absence of an on-the-road publicist (no-one`s trying to hype Genesis, never have and never will) it`s the drummer who hospitalitises me.
But to get down to business, can Phil crack it onstage as a singer, and more pertinently, as a front-man? Like I said, he is a little guy with a likeable, if basically anonymous face. Peter Gabriel, he isn`t.
Moreover, the group`s decision to have Phil sing in front of them was more one of expedience than anything else. Going back to last autumn and the recording of “A Trick Of The Tail”, Collins was down to sing a mere two acoustic songs, and as far as singing on the heavier numbers he was an unknown quantity.
Since joining the group in `71, Collins had always sang back-up to Gabriel on album and onstage – singing along live even when his vocals weren`t miked up to the PA. On Genesis`s 1973 album, “Selling England By The Pound”, he sang lead on his pretty, acoustic song “More Fool Me” which was also featured onstage.
After some 400 applicants for the job of Gabriel`s successor brought no joy, Collins thought it was about time he had a go at singing all of the album. “It was very frustrating,” he says. “I was singing and teaching them and none of them were coming up to scratch. We even went into the studio without a singer. It got to the point where we had to do `Squonk` (the album`s heaviest cut) – and I had a go. Obviously it went okay, so we went through the rest of the album.

“At that point we felt very confident. We knew that as far as the studio went we could exist as a four-piece without any hassle.”
The stage was another thing altogether, but with the encouragement of his wife, Phil suggested to the rest of Genesis that he should take care of all the vocals live. They weren`t convinced, but two months later when there was still no sign of anyone to take over on the vocal front, Collins put it to the band again.
This time they acquiesced, and the search for a drummer was on.
Enter Bill Bruford, one of our finest players, late of Yes, Roy Harper`s excellent Trigger, Pavlov`s Dog and National Health. Bruford had first played with Collins in Brand X as a percussionist alongside Collins` drumming – Collins formed Brand X about a year or so ago to play small clubs and pubs when Genesis aren`t on the road.
It was at one of the Brand X rehearsals that Bruford asked Phil how the search for a drummer was going. When Phil told him it wasn`t going well, Bruford wanted to know why he hadn`t been invited to join.
Says Collins: “I didn`t think he`d be into the gig after playing with whom he`s played with.” But after one rehearsal with Genesis, it was obvious that Bill did fit in.
Meanwhile back in St Louis, it`s just turned six in the evening and the temperature has cooled off to the lower 80s. The local FM radio has been persistently advertising a full day`s programme of Simon and Garfunkel for the coming weekend (they don`t believe in doing anything by halves) and tracks from Peter Frampton`s live album dominate the airwaves.
For Genesis it`s sound-check time and Mike Rutherford drives the band to this evening`s gig which is just a few minutes away from the world`s biggest Holiday Inn Complex. A 3,000 seater, it`s called the Ambassador Theatre, and very English it is too, with the kind of rococco splendour I hadn`t associated with American rock gigs. Suits Genesis down to a `t`, it does. It could have been air-freighted straight from London Towne. And probably was.

Genesis are not a huge act wherever they go in the States. Their biggest following is in the North-East and over the border in Canada where, after rehearsals in Texas, they opened this 30-date tour. After four warm-up dates in the Ontario area (“They knew us there, but they didn`t know any tunes,” says Collins) the tour started with two shows at Toronto`s Maple Leaf, a 9,500 seater hockey stadium.
An average sized gig for the tour, which ended in Los Angeles earlier this month, would be 3,500 with the vast majority of gigs having been sold out or almost sold out.
Collins opines thus about why Genesis are Big In Canada: “I think it`s because they follow European taste. When you`re there you could well be in Europe. I don`t actually like playing there because it`s like playing Europe. And I don`t like playing Europe.
“As far as album sales go, their penultimate “The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway” made the top 40 and while “A Trick Of The Tail” has done better, going to number 31 on some album charts. They haven`t as yet had a hit album in America.
This tour is very much a consolidatory exercise – “putting the full stop at the end of the sentence” as Collins puts it – and when the band return in October, they`ll be playing bigger gigs in several places.
Genesis might be a popular punters group in Canada, but the gigs there this time didn`t pick up ecstatic reviews. Over to Collins: “I thought we were really good. No way did I think we were bad, but the reviews sounded as if they were written by people who prefered the other show. They called us mediocre. Actually, I had a very down period at the beginning of the tour.
“I thought I was doing right, but I wasn`t sure because the only important feedback, apart from the audience reaction, was that I was weak. They (the press) said the music was okay, but that we`d definitely lost a singer. But in one place we knew for a fact that a paper had sent a gardening expert – I`m not joking. They sent a gardening expert to cover the show because the music correspondent was ill.

“This person reviewed the gig and I kind of started to love the idea of ignoring reviews.
“In the past I`ve always been an avid reader of our reviews. `The Lamb Lies Down` had some bad ones when we started. We played our first date in Chicago and the album hadn`t even come out yet. We got some awful reviews…
“The guy who reviewed us in Montreal this time said he was into James Brown. We expected a bad review from him and we got one.”
The Ambassador apparently isn`t sold-out, but looking around the theatre you could have fooled me. The audience is predominantly white, but there are more blacks than you`d expect for a Genesis gig, and the black guy in his late teens sitting next to me is well excited at the prospect of seeing the band.
Missouri as a state is neither north or south sociologically speaking – in the Civil War they couldn`t make up their mind which side to take and ended up on the fence.
The audience are a mixed bunch, some long-hairs, some short-hairs and there`s one guy who sits over to my left who`s most definitely got it right – with the following printed on his white T-shirt; Fuck the Bicentenary. Easily the funniest thing I`ve seen all week and in welcome contrast to the patriotic banners in the world`s biggest Holiday Inn Complex`s drug store which proclaim 200 years of freedom and democracy.
There is no support act and when Genesis take the stage around 8.30 they stay there for the next two hours and more. Collins has said that Gabriel`s departure has subconsciously lifted a weight off the band`s shoulders and everybody in the band will come over as more of a personality. And no-one is pressuring him to be another Gabriel.
And that`s how it appears as the gig gets under way, even though a little of the natural reserve common to Steve Hackett, Rutherford and Tony Banks transfers itself to the stage.

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Collins, of course, is as different a front-man from Gabriel as Paul Rodgers is from Mick Jagger (no parallels intended), other than in his voice. His phrasing is almost identical to the Big G`s, but his voice lacks the breadth and power. However, the way he makes Genesis a much more human band more than makes up for it.
Phil Collins, quite simply, makes Genesis more accessible – to this writer at least. He has presence – amazingly enough, when you consider the man physically, but whereas Gabriel was always something of an awesome figure (maybe sublime is a better word) Collins is much more touchable.
Like the rest of the band (excluding Bruford, but that`s something else again), Collins is tastefully dressed. He wears sharply pressed cream pants and a tastefully coloured T shirt. Rutherford, Banks and Hackett, the latter of whom, in a loose fitting white blouse and with pants tucked into his boots, comes on like some ever-so slightly degenerate 18th century cleric, are also tastefully dressed.
Rutherford also has stage presence now – his entire visage fixed in a splendid expression of upper-middleclass suppressed sarcasm. There`s definitely something of the John Cleese about this fellow.
What`s more, Hackett no longer sits down all the time. He stands up for at least half the set. He doesn`t move much, though. You don`t expect miracles, do you? But he does come up-front to introduce his song – the very excellent, ethereal “Entangled” from the last album.
Likewise Rutherford, who introduces some song or other.
Collins is a bodyful of energy on stage. He runs, sometimes on the spot in mock keep-fit type movements and sometimes from the mike out-front to his drum-kit, larger than Bruford`s and stage left. He scampers, leaps, scurries, feigns a ballet-dance and pirouettes all over the place. He uses hand-movements and facial expressions to bring over the point of the song.

For “Robbery Assault And Battery” he puts on a cloth cap and an oversized coat and becomes the small-time working class rogue the song portrays.
His only other costume change is a white smock which he puts on for another song, the title of which I`ve unfortunately forgotten.
Visually and musically this Genesis is excellent. Throughout their lengthy set they continually demonstrate the musical and compositional skills that have made them a first division band.
Their melodic flair comes across in songs like “White Mountain”, “Supper`s Ready” (which fulfils all its promise) and so many other songs which got lost in the pure enjoyment of it all.
The dynamics of their music is quite staggering and each musician plays his chosen instrument with a rare degree of technical prowess and taste. Nothing is overplayed or under-done. Everything is constantly creative and imaginative.
Yes, I liked them.
Slides, movies, graphics and cartoons are used throughout and are always totally in sympathy with the music. They make, say, the Floyd`s attempts at similar visual presentation techniques look silly by comparison. Ocassionally the visuals are a little too obvious, but even then acceptably so.
Apart from the numbers mentioned above, Genesis`s set also included “Dance On A Volcano”, “Squonk”, and “Los Endos” from “A Trick Of The Tail”, the title cut from “The Lamb Lies Down”, plus “Carpet Crawler” and “It” from the same album.
The latter segued into “Watcher Of The Skies” for the encore. There`s also the band`s only British hit “I Know What I Like (In Your Wardrobe)”, “Cinema Show” and “Firth Of Forth”.

Those of you who`ve bought tickets for the band`s sold-out five days at Hammersmith Odeon in June are in for the proverbial treat. Really.
Apart from the back projections, actual smoke belched from the stage for the climax of “Supper`s Ready”. That might have been a little over-done, but, `struth, at least it wasn`t dry ice.
Backstage Rutherford is quite euphoric, explaining that if he seemed a little pissed off earlier it was because the lazer wasn`t working. Laser? Isn`t that old-hat from The Who and Zeppelin? Ah, he says, the Genesis laser is different, and doesn`t merely project a static beam of light (or lights) across the auditorium. It`s much more flexible, and, they say, spectacular.
Hackett is maintaining his seemingly impregnable shyness, but when I tell him I think Genesis are a much better band for Gabriel`s going, he agrees. Gabriel sent the band a well-wishing telegram for the tour`s opening night, but still hasn`t seen them.
Banks and Rutherford are with the ladies. The excellent Bruford (damn, I`ve forgot to tell you how good he was. Still, you probably guessed) is swathed in towels, as is Collins who seems remarkably fresh after such an energetic performance.
The promoter has laid on Chinese food for all and there`s no madness. Genesis are well behaved. Didn`t you know that already? Back to the world`s largest Holiday Inn complex, where each group member retires to his own room. I go and see Phil with tape in hand. His wife and baby are in the bedroom of his suite.
Apparently his biggest worry about fronting the band was being incapable of talking to the audience, but that`s okay now. He does say he`ll keep himself just a shade more together before going on, but his new role hasn`t changed things that much at all.

“I don`t actually find it more tiring,” he says. “I`ve lost a lot of weight on this tour. Actually, I`d rather go back and play the drums than go off stage and have a drink. I`m still a drummer.
“I don`t consider myself the lead singer. I feel I have more leeway to do what I want being a drummer first, because people don`t expect a supercool, super-slick guy. They expect someone who`s just a guy and that makes it a lot easier.
“It makes me feel a lot more comfortable. I`m more excited by Genesis now `cause I can get more out of it. There were always songs that I would have loved to have sung. That`s probably why I sang along with Peter onstage. Some people might think I was sitting there plotting behind the drum-kit to get rid of the lead singer so I can take over, but that`s ridiculous.”
So does he think Genesis are a better band?
He cops out by saying, “It seems to be more musical, but maybe that`s because we`ve got Bill in the group. I have an awful lot of respect for what he does.”
Although Bruford has no thoughts of joining Genesis as a full-time member, Collins hopes he`ll be with them for their October US tour.
“I think he treats us the same way he treated Roy Harper and National Health. Bill appreciates that we`re about songs rather than techniques or solos (onstage there are few solos). I`d like to keep him into it but I realise he hasn`t got much to gain out of it. I want to make sure he`s happy musically. He seems to be.”

Collins onstage definitely becomes something of an actor and it doesn`t surprise me when he tells me that much of his childhood was spent in the theatre as a child-actor. He`s played the part of the artful dodger in Oliver, which maybe accounts for his fine performance during “Robbery Assault And Battery”.
“I`ve been on the stage in one form or other from the age of six until about 16 or 17. I feel quite comfortable in a costume like that. All the other times I feel just like a singer.
“That`s all I want to do – sing. So I try and use as much of the body and face but without actually going as far as putting anything on”.
Regarding the back-projections the group are self-critical, “We get qualms every now and then about them being like French movies, a bit electric cinema.
“Some of the film sequences weren`t as good as we hoped they`d be, things like `Entangled`, which are abstract are probably better.”
It must cost a lot to organise all that, particularly as they`re specially filmed?
“I couldn`t honestly tell you. You become immune to those sort of costs. I wouldn`t know how much a hotel room is. I don`t know how much we earn tonight. When you come to think about it, it must be somewhere between five and ten thousand dollars” – he pauses to re-collect his thoughts – “I`ve no idea… This could be a cheap gig. It could be a real expensive gig. We don`t plan to make money off our live performances. This tour might make a slight profit. Up until `The Lamb` we were writing off a debt.
“No sooner are we out of debt than there`s a tax problem. There`s no inbetween, so in effect we`ll only be as well off as we were three years ago earning 90 quid a week or something.”

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Never heard of “Strapps”, but I like their promotional material.

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of New Musical Express also contains articles/interviews with these people: Pink Floyd, David Bowie, Ramones, Ian Hunter, Erich Von Daniken, Eric Carmen, Elton John, Nils Lofgren, Stanley Clarke.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 15 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT Ian Hunter FROM New Musical Express, May 15, 1976

Here we go again with yet another Ian Hunter article. Why do you like Hunter so much, you may ask? The answer is that I don`t especially like him more than others on this blog. As some of you know, I promise to post all articles I find of the 5 most visited bands/artists of my blog. And those artists are right now: Ritchie Blackmore, Deep Purple, Lemmy, Ian Hunter and Steve Howe.
If you want the same treatment for your favourite artist, you need to get people to click on the articles with them in it. That`s all!

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IAN HUNTER: All American Alien Boy (CBS)

By Charles Shaar Murray

There exists a subtle difference between a tax exile and an expatriate.
It has more to do with the way that someone carries themselves than the reasons that sent him away. Rod Stewart is a tax exile, pure and simple, whereas John Lennon is an expatriate. Stewart sounds to have lost touch with his background without having established any real temporary root system; artistically as well as politically and geographically, he is in limbo.
On the other hand, Lennon determined from the outset that if he was gonna live in America he was sho `nuff gonna righteously live there and involve himself as fully in American cultural, social and political life as anybody else on his block; without denying his Englishness he was simultaneously going to do his damnedest to be a good American.
It ain`t for nothing that Ian Hunter shouts out “Look out Lennon here I come – land ahoy-hoy-hoy!” as he bawls himself hoarse on his way into the first chorus of the title song of “All American Alien Boy”. The slightly pretentious title proves itself nothing more than a direct summing-up of Hunter`s stance as resident rather than tourist, a stance which enables him to transcend the superficiality of the out-of-the-limo-window-I-saw generally written by jetstream Anglos buzzing through to deliver boogie to the natives, while utilising his distance from England to recollect emotion in tranquility – or vice versa.

If Lennon is one of the spectres who stalk the landscape of this album, the other Ghost Of Rockanroll Past who`s right in there rattling his chains is Bob Dylan. On the strength of this album it may well be appropriate to nominate Hunter for a second term as This Year`s New Dylan. He`s deliberately cast much of the album in a “Blonde On Blonde” mould, utilising the master`s devices with a knowing pointedness, manipulating the associations, implications and resonances of the instrumentation and the inflections of his own expertly Zimmer Twins vocals for specific effect.
The only occasions when his grip falters is where, despite his mastery of Lennon and Dylan`s use of boisterous humour, he fails to infuse into his mixture the sly irony of his models: the irony that enables Dylan to use the device of saying “The moral of this storreeee” in “Frankie Lee And Judas Priest” and not sound heavy-handed, whereas Hunter flubs the trick in “Restless Youth”, a musically exciting but lyrically suspect sympathy-for-the gunsel song in Maestro`s “Joey” tradition (it even refers to “Little Italy”, f` Chrissakes!).
So, picking up on New York like any starstruck English Dylan freak would, and maybe seeing Dylan`s adoption of his erstwhile pal and partner Mick (“I aren`t a session man”) Ronson as vaguely symbolic, Hunter has ditched the last vestiges of Mott-style rock and roll in favour of his deliberate, conscious, yes-I-know-my-rights-and-am-of-sound-mind-and-body-and-do-knowingly-willingly-that-which-I-am-about-to-do Dylan act.

The album`s opening cut “Letter To Britannia From The Union Jack” is to-and-about Britain, and uses the rather strained metaphor heralded in the title to sound a slightly discordant note of national pride and please-get-it-together-England.
It`s the first of a fairly small cluster of moments on the album where Hunter seems unable to find language that will match the power of his attempted statement and thereby debases his theme while uncomfortable emphasis is thrown on his linguistic fumbling.
On the title cut, however, he`s in roaring form. Gerry Weems` blasting Ronsonesque lead guitar cuts in right on the heels of “Union Jack”`s fade, underscored by Jaco Pastorius` bass, Aynsley Dunbar`s stomping drums, accompanied by Hunter`s own monolithic piano chording, before the inimitable David Sanborn (formerly of the Butterfield Blues Band and “Young Americans” – period Bowie) blasts a path for a bellowingly self-assured Hunter sneering like some Dylan/Jagger fusion.
It`s a fine song, though in its opening stages the solos by Pastorius, Sanborn and Weems that interrupt the verses irritate despite their excellence, and Hunter has a fine old time machine-gunning tortuously rhymed lyrics and racing the band to the changes. His Dylanisms seem endearingly cheeky rather than offensively derivative:
“Don`t get slugged get mugged get bugged or they`ll sling you in the jug. Sweep you under some rug, give you some drug, pull out the plug and then..
I mean, howcum Bruce Springsteen didn`t write that?

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From getting hilariously confused with brash Americana and TV commercials, he drifts back to his distant youth and gets misty-eyed about the callous teendream who rejected the young Hunter in “Irene Wilde”. “A Barker Street Bus Station non-affair” is how he characterises it, proving that he still has his background together.
“Restless Youth”, which ends the side, is by far the heaviest rocker on the album. Chris Stainton comes off keyboards  for his one crack at bass, and he clearly hasn`t forgotten how to crank a Fender bass up to the bonecrunching impact level of his playing on Cocker`s “With A Little Help From My Friends”.
“Rape” proves again that Hunter has a lot to learn from Dylan about writing political songs (and let`s just leave “Mozambique” right out of this, okay? I never liked the damn song in the first place anyway), “You Nearly Did Me In” has a gorgeous chorus (with backing vocals by Freddie and Roger of Queen, gang!) and a nice drift to it.
Hunter unleashes his killer punch in “Apathy 83”, which demonstrates that his ability to slice rock and roll right down the middle is completely undimmed. He also pulls off his most inspired Dylan reference of a heavily Dylan-soaked album with “Was it General Sheridan who said that the only good good man is a dead good man? It was not me, babe!” delivered in the most ringingly triumphant Bobby-the-Zee tones imaginable. He clinches with:
“Nostalgia is starting to focus too late, intelligence is starting too itch.
And there ain`t no rock and roll no more, just the music of the rich.
`N it`s apathy for the devil, apathy for the devil, apathy for the devil.
Apathy`s at fever piiiiiiiiiiitch!”

His final song, “God”, is stone Dylan with Stainton laying down an organ part so Kooperish that if you woke Al up in the middle of the night and played it to him he`d probably think it was him. Hunter`s God opens up the dialogue with “I`m gonna kick your ass, `cuz all you ever do is ask, ask, ask” and ends with “Behave yourself, see you around!” which is probably pretty much how God would talk if Ian Hunter was writing his scripts.
“All American Alien Boy” is a difficult and fairly uncompromising album; it`s uncomfortably personal, occasionally crude and self-indulgent, and it`s by no means an unqualified success. However, it`s also hugely revealing both about the subjects it discusses and the man who made it, and one which has by no means diminished my admiration of Ian Hunter.

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I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of New Musical Express also contains articles/interviews with these people: Pink Floyd, David Bowie, Ramones, Genesis, Erich Von Daniken, Eric Carmen, Elton John, Nils Lofgren, Stanley Clarke.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 15 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.