Nugent, Ted


This album was originally released in september 1975, but I guess it wasn`t released in the UK before the summer of 1976. Strange to think that in those days you couldn`t get hold of an album until it was released in your country (or pay hugely by buying it on import). As we know – these days the albums get “leaked” on the internet even before they are released. How times have changed.
A very favourable review of a album that still remains one of the greatest “guitar-oriented” albums out there. There are some really classic stuff on this one, so if you haven`t already got it – buy it! It is well worth your money.


Hell on earth and a lorry-load of dollars


By Max Bell

Once upon a time the idea of liking Ted Nugent And The Amboy Dukes was considered remarkably unhip. Poor old Ted and his boys were the butt of many a knowing jest, usually based around their supposed ineptitude and crass handling of some of rock `n ` roll`s… uh… more simple trademarks.
I always liked The Dukes myself; sure they were a rotten band, but occasionally Ted produced the goods on schedule and confounded his critics by revealing some potential lurking beneath that morass of Detroit sick grunge.
“Marriage On The Rocks”, if you ever see it, is something of a minor league classic. I picked it up for a few pesetas in a Spanish supermarket five years ago and I`ve been trying to convert the odd passer-by to its manifold merits (with nought success I might add).
Ted`s second period regeneration has been even more fruitful in terms of albums, fruitless in terms of actual success.
“Call Of The Wild” and “Tooth, Fang And Claw” are really fine examples of spreading a few ideas a long way and remarkably dense little numbers in their own way.
Recognition seemed to be a long way round the corner though until now.
Minus the Amboy Dukes moniker, but plus a host of renewed confidence, the diamond coated Nugent has finally cracked the egg and got on the good side of his public mirage. If you say you like him today no-one will show you the closet. Times change.

For those who listen “Stranglehold”, the eight-minute extravaganza opening side one, is a veritable melee of guitar prowess, killer riffs and stirring seventh wave crescendo chords.
The replacement of Vic “Bolognese” Mastrianni by Cliff Davies has added another dimension to the rhythm section, an area of Ted`s entourage which was sadly lacking sparkle previously. Here he`s left to his own devices, migration axe laid on thick and slow, moody charged energy.
He is working the same territory as John Cippolina and Gary Duncan, a vintage string of cavalry bugle call and response mechanism that leaves most competition flat on their respective floors.
The final spiel from Ted on death is a superb advert for his own madcap excess. Muscular showmanship from a man who fights off assassin squads with a burst of Gibson-drenched buckshot.
“Stormtroopin`” (Nugent`s knowledge of the English language doesn`t encompass the letter G`) continues the American high frequency signal destroyer.
Laid back is not a term often found in Ted`s handbook. Davies` heartbeat slick rock percussion, Rob Grange`s foil bass and Derek St. Holmes additional rhythm guitar all undercut the main man who makes every British flash outfit sound old and tired.
Large doses of chauvinistic macho spitfire dribble all over the disc. Lyrics about guns, arson; nothing too nasty except the vocals.

Now a H.M. group is only as good as its vocalist and here the boys fall down with the occasional thump until Nugent hauls them up again.
“Hey Baby” owes a whole lot to Free and their ilk though it lacks Rodgers and Co`s mastery of the on-off motif. They don`t so much stop and start as never let up; gets a mite wearing after a while.
“Just What The Doctor Ordered” is a similar slice of front line boogie, nothing unusual but guaranteed to get any alive audience in the world tearing down the walls.
If they`d had Nugent at Jericho the fracas could have been over immediately. He makes some acceptably horrible noises.
On the other side “Snakeskin Cowboys” (what a flair for the catchy title) is directed to the front stage murder platoons who dig this sound in the Mid West and South where Ted is already a legend.
Actually the lyrics are dreadful, but that doesn`t matter much. In the old days The Dukes battled with such philosophical problemata as “Why Is A Carrot More Orange Than An Orange” and it got them as far as zilch gulch, no paddle.
Nugent`s guitar style is all about eliciting a certain response, probably violent blood-letting hysteria, and he succeeds in unblocking most frustration taps with his standard block bar rhythm chords. The rock and roll plumber strikes again.
Nugent no longer needs to indulge in money-spinning Jack Elam leatherette guitar battles to earn his keep.
Recently the band have been supporting the largest combo in this universe, Aerosmith to you (more popular than either The Stones or Zeppelin, let me tell ya, in the States). Choice indoor gigs like an 86,000 indoor Detroit stadium. Hell on earth and a lorry load of dollars.
Prediction: by the end of this year Nugent and Bob Seger will have joined the ranks that separate small fish from huge monsters. This time he`s sharpening his teeth on broken glass.
I think you`d better get Ted Nugent before he gets you.


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: Michael Chapman, Roger McGuinn, The Beatles, ZZ Top, Bob Marley, Sly and the Family Stone, Eric Burdon Band, Genesis, Streetwalkers.

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:
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.


It has been a while since I`ve been active on this blog. Time to move things along again. Since you last heard from me I have received mail from two of the original writers of the NME, giving me their blessings in regard to this project of mine. Thank you – it really means a lot to hear that all the work I have done here is appreciated. As one of them said so fittingly: “It is a labour of love”.
Since I last updated this blog there have been some changes in world power, at least in the USA, and who better to mark this than rock`s own political right-wing man – Ted Nugent. He may be too extreme for a Norwegian Social-Democrat like me, but he made some interesting records in the 70s and I give him credit for that. But not too much credit – so here is “only” a concert review.  😉
Have fun!




By Max Bell
Pic: Pennie Smith

I wasn`t supposed to review this but the bloke who was had a headache. After I left Hammersmith so had I.

Well…was Ted Nugent as ferociously frightening as when our writer witnessed him manhandle his way across Texas? Did he incite his fans to levels of stomping malevolence hitherto unseen in England`s brown and parched land? In short, was he the most outrageous rock`n`roll individual to ever slip into a Gibson and riddle the stalls with hideously demonic heavy metal in the constant search for the fractured ear drum?
Or was he just bloody silly?
Before Nugent did his pieces we had to sit through Dirty Tricks and latecomers to the bill Lone Star, a new hard rock band that a lot of people are saying nice things about. It was the loudest collection I`ve ever heard. Both bands were plagued by a constant whirring fizz from the left hand side of the PA.
Lone Star played a reasonable high energy set, promise of greater potential. Dirty Tricks were just `orrible. I`ve never seen such a dismal rehash of English unemployment rock tedium. Competence and volume, four/four riff cliches, a singer who actually wants to look like Rod Stewart. The guitarist`s amps, speakers, strap, volume pedal all failed. He carried on regardless, throwing down the gauntlet of excess. Pshaw!

The whole evening was overkill city. By the time Nugent came on the kids were already totally diz-busted by a diet of HM crunch, kept dribbling by the break-neck assortment of inter-band record filling.
Ted`s criteria for success was going to be a battle of volume. It was, and he made it.
Apparently the rest of the tour is being recorded for a live album. I reckon they`ll burn these tapes fast.
Afterwards Nugent said it was the worst gig he`d ever played. Still, Ted went down the proverbial electronic storm. He trampled the audience into a state of complete nervous exhaustion. Far be it from me to hold any reservations in the area of dangerous decibels, but after half an hour I felt defeated.
Nugent`s steamrolling abilities were confirmed, but occasionally he gave us an indication of something more interesting nesting within his fingertips. If he`d slipped in some more of his tasty stuff the whole event would have been more bearable.


Set coup de rock explosions, “Stranglehold”, “Hibernation” and “Great White Buffalo”, all trundled along apace. Nugent proved his old trooper professionalism too when the bass amp spluttered to a standstill of indignant silent entrenchment. Ted improvised a rather good “Cat Scratch Fever” and none guessed the off-the-cuff taking-care-of-biz going on under their noses.
The feedback during “Great White Buffalo” was dangerous. There`s no place further Nugent can take the frequency without driving his following beyond the line. Small wonder all the band wear ear plugs on stage. In future cotton wool, hearing aids and aspirin will be compulsory survival kit for band and audience alike.
Much of the material was filler for the tooth, fang and claw comin` out of hibernation speed kills moments of panic. If it was a duff set, it was certainly heavier than either of the Stateside concerts I`ve seen and the reaction didn`t indicate any dissatisfaction on the part of the paying customers. Christ knows what he`ll do with Liverpool and Birmingham.

Me? I`m staying in a corner over Ted until he steps out and delivers the HM tour de force that moments like “Stranglehold”, “Pony Express” and “Breast Fed Gator” indicate he has up his sleeve. From what I`ve heard, “Free For All” promises to go somewhere towards distilling his pearls into solid mud.
Ted`s great cos he plays the cause and effect game for keeps and anyone who disagrees better get outta the way. I wish he`d turn it down occasionally mind, I mean three Nugent gigs in a month is enough for even the staunchest devotee.
Till then ambivalence is the best policy.
Can I `ave me ears back, Ted?


I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With a great, big thank you 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: Hot Rods, Phil Manzanera, Tom Jones, Elliott Randall, Jefferson Starship, Richard Ingrams, Joe Albany, Doo-Wop Article, Soft Machine.

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:
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.