Concert review

ARTICLE ABOUT Hawkwind FROM Sounds, December 27, 1975

A very positive review even if their biggest hit was missing from the set!
Read on.

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Reading

Concert review by Robin Smith

HAWKWIND playing the Top Rank is like the Royal Philharmonic performing at the Rainbow. Something just doesn’t fit. But Reading’s home of baggy trousers, Rod Stewart haircuts and Brut aftershave didn’t deter the Hawkwind faithful.
Some seeds of change are growing in the band. The old mystique that made them so popular is being sprinkled with good old showmanship – largely by Robert Calvert, back in the fold again. Hawkwind are actually laughing on stage and a merry drum roll was played during an instrument change.
But they started out in traditional manner with ‘Assault and Battery’, a solid wall of sound interrupted briefly with some flute work, from Nik Turner. `Steppenwolf` ringed the changes for the band. It had an almost funky feel and Calvert pranced around singing like a cross between Ferry and Jagger.
The new style took the Hawkwind die-hards by surprise. Cries of `Silver Machine’ were heard — but the band played on with Calvert’s `Ragnor Rock’. `Brainstorm’ was a return to the old style. Plenty of weird noises and strobe lighting — a dated but eye riveting effect.
Then a thoughtful melodic number took the crowd by surprise again, before `Master Of The Universe’ restored confidence in the band. A really terrifying piece with Calvert donning a flying helmet and looking like an air ace back from the dead. The crowd lapped it up.
But no encore and no ‘Silver Machine’, a bad tactical error.
At the moment Hawkwind are treading a fine line between ending their old style and starting a new act. If they forsake their cosmic routes completely, then they may lose many fans. It’s best not to tamper too much with your trademark.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
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ARTICLE ABOUT Black Sabbath / Aerosmith FROM Sounds, December 27, 1975

This is one of those strange ones that happen from time to time – the support band gets a better review than the headliner. If that is in any way “correct”, I don`t know, as I was only nearly ten years old at the time and didn`t frequent many concerts at that age. Maybe some of the readers know?
Read on!

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Black Sabbath/ Aerosmith
Madison Square Garden

Concert review by Toby Goldstein

IT WAS the kind of show no one over 18 wants to cover unless they’re paid to do so. Yet in spite of formidable odds against a proper reception, regardless of the beer spray which rained down on a hefty chunk of audience during their encore, Aerosmith, at least, proved they will be a band to reckon with in future, an Important Group in terms of both music and showmanship.
Leader Steve Tyler is a barrel of laughs. A Bostonians version of the Jagger school, he follows Mick in cut of hair, costume and attempted stage antics. He looks convincing enough.
After a time, the klutziness fades, for Tyler is as believable a singer as they come, Aerosmith are skilled in the arts of rocking and rolling and, best of all, not once did they attempt playing at jet takeoff volume.
The set was concentrated around their third album, ‘Toys In The Attic’ but also payed homage to the best of earlier albums. Older singles ‘Dream On’ and ‘Same Old Song And Dance’ illustrated what had pulled this group out of the mainstream.
Black Sabbath headlined the show, and a band with more persistence at repetition would be hard to find. Ozzie Osborne looks and acts at least five years backdated, with the songs hewing to a similar pattern.
Older material was indistinguishable from the newer, all three-chord exercises in success through overkill. It must be said that the audience was firmly in Sabbath’s corner, treating them as conquering heroes for more than an hour of the stuff, but after Tommy Iommi started to bleed, victim of a tossed-up tin can, I knew it was time to leave.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
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ARTICLE ABOUT Alice Cooper FROM SOUNDS, September 20, 1975

Mr. Barton was not convinced by Cooper going it alone. Quite an interesting perspective in this one.
Read on!

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Alice`s pantomime

Concert review by Geoff Barton

“Well, …. it`s surrealist, innit?” remarked the girl sitting in front of us, eyes open wide, staring at the impressive Empire Pool stage.
Alice has obviously spared no expense for this show: two tall, translucent grey pillars with a thick beam lying on top of them, like a futuristic version of Stonehenge, dominated the platform. In between them was a bed of twisted metal, beside them an over-large toy box, behind them provision had been made for a band. Surrealist indeed.
The Heavy Metal Kids got the evening off to a raucous start: front man Gary Holton was as obnoxious as ever, tripping over periodically and telling his year-old jokes (“We`re gonna play a dancin` number now, but seein` as you`re sittin` down rub your asses on the seats”) The Kids were brash and loud, but didn`t try quite hard enough to win over the crowd. No encore.
Alice took to the stage after a long interval and, tugging at his red leotard, cavorting gormlessly around to tunultous cheers, snarled out the appropriate opening lines to `Welcome To My Nightmare`.
It soon became clear, however, that what should have been the ultimate fusion of rock and theatrical excess was in fact no more than a rather lewd pantomime.
Alice, taking the lead role in this epic, has well and truly discarded his malevolent, blood-lusting `Killer` image and now reminds you of a demented Jack minus his beanstalk.
He plays the frightened little boy, plagued by rotten dreams: he`s taunted by groups of superbly acrobatic dancers, he cowers, crawls, sits cross-legged in front of the toy box and enjoys a Punch and Judy show – in all, a rather embarrassing role.
He acts a vengeful Peter Pan figure who slashes with a sword, kicks around a limp female dummy, is attacked by bulbous spiders and decapitates a blundering cyclops – theatrical overkill, at times laughable and mostly less than convincing.

This was Alice`s trip. If nothing else, it served to tax his abominable voice and reveal to one and all that he has the absolute minimum of stage presence. He should never really have gone it so completely alone.
Alice`s musically excellent band were demoted to mere backing musicians. They were lined up at the back of the stage and could generate little excitement because of their seemingly minor roles (except for the Steve Hunter/Dick Wagner guitar duel, one of the highspots of the evening). Alice had to carry the whole show – and he just failed to pull it off.
It was all precisely timed and choreographed: a combination of live and filmed action, where dancers would leap from and into a cinema screen was quite impeccable – even though it wasn`t rock and roll. Many were all too easily impressed by the effects – the biggest cheer of the evening arose when a giant spider`s web was hoisted up from wisps of dry ice and not when, for example, Alice sang `No More Mr Nice Guy` or `Department Of Youth`.
Even when the theatricals were over and the band played straight rock and roll for the encore, it was strictly anti-climatic. I believe solos were played, though the only clear view I had was of the keyboard player`s head.
“I expected something a little more spectacular,” said the same girl at the end of the concert. I wouldn`t necessarily agree with that – but I do believe that Alice should save shows like this for Broadway and at the same time carefully assess his position in the leading role.

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The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
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ARTICLE ABOUT Status Quo FROM SOUNDS, May 17, 1975

Did the mighy Quo ever play a a bad concert in the 70s? I am sure they did, but there weren`t many. Here`s another one of those good ones.
Read on!

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Quo`s May blitz

By Pete Makowski

It may be unlucky for some people but to Quo 13 years represents a longevity that equals and even surpasses many well established bands. And to celebrate this little event the band decided to undertake an anniversary tour opening at Leicester`s De Montfort Hall last Thursday.
It was, as expected, a raging success and also revealed a new musical side to the band in a set that lasted over one and three quarter hours and was executed at a ball-breaking pace. The audience was, as expected, solid Quo fans, and being Quo fans they made sure it was an event to be remembered.
The evening opened with a set from The Pretty Things, another band who have been around for a while. Their set was impressive but not properly paced, too many long drawn out `come on clap your hands` sessions. The last time I saw them, their set was tighter, slicker and had more success. Still a really ace rock band.
Quo`s set opened up with a swirling mass of dry ice, the closest the band have ever got to theatrics. The band got onto the stage and it was Blitzkreig. They opened up the set, as they did last tour, with `Love Me When I`m Down`, with Alan Lancaster stooped over his bass, growling the vocals with fire and brimstone. A sea of denims surged forwards as Rossi belted out the vocals of `I Saw The Light`, off the `On The Level` album.
Next a change of guitars and Parfitt took the microphones, slowing the pace down with `Nightride` and then bringing it back up to the normal Quo energy level with `Little Lady`.
Silence fell over the hall as Rossi`s hoarse vocals accompanied by a quiet (would you believe?) guitar backing played `Most Of The Time` which developed into an extra heavy weight twelve bar.

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Then came the contrast with a slow tempo country ditty by the name of `Claudie`, featuring some strong harmonies. This was followed by a trip down memory lane in form of `Gerundula`, featuring, wait for it, Rick Parfitt on acoustic guitar, Rossi playing a Les Paul (the first time I`ve seen him play a different guitar) and Alan Lancaster on rhythm guitar… have Quo gone acoustic?
No, but at last they have found a way to pace their set without killing the energy level, the audience didn`t seem to mind and the atmosphere was brought up to an almost electrifying peak with a medley featuring `Backwater`, `Just Take Me` and `Forty Five Hundred Times`, with some surprisingly competent guitar work from Rossi, whose style is usually more forceful than constructive.
These numbers also displayed John Coughlan`s hard tireless attacking drum playing that provides the backbone to Quo`s solid wall of sound. Next came a series of powerchord boogie workouts with Rossi, looking a bit worse of wear by now, running up and down the length of the stage, with Lancaster and Parfitt following his example.
`Roll Over Lay Down`, `Big Fat Momma` and `Don`t Waste My Time` had the crew rocking from side to side. The amazing thing about Quo gigs is that no matter how frenzied the audience is there are never any attempts to storm the stage even though there are no barriers and minimal security.
The set ended with `Roadhouse Blues`, featuring the infamous sailor`s hornpipe and when you see a few thousand kids jigging it`s quite something. The band returned with an encore featuring `Caroline`, `Mean Girl` and an amazing drum solo from John Coughlan, culminating with `Bye Bye Johnny`. Hasn`t anyone told these guys we`ve got an energy crisis? Great stuff.

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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!
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 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 Genesis FROM SOUNDS, April 26, 1975

A very honest and good account of the concert and the meaning of the plot by Mr. Makowski.
Read on!

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A touch of the Jaggers

Concert review by Pete Makowski

The stage was set. On the left hand side Steve Hackett was seated with guitar and a melange of effects around him. Behind him Michael Rutherford was stooped over his twin neck bass and six string guitar. On the right Tony Banks was half hidden behind an impressive selection of keyboards, in the centre, with headphones, sat Phil Collins with surrounding percussion.
The rest of the area was a playground for Pete Gabriel`s surreal fantasies.
If you haven`t already guessed, I saw Genesis at the Wembley Empire Pool last Monday, to be precise and left extremely impressed. On every level the band transcend any kind of expected performance standard. Musically they are so proficient they make that part of the job look like a secondary exercise. Visually, apart from Gabriel`s cavortings, the lights, three screens of tightly synchronised slides and stage effects left me confused as to what I should be focusing on. Seeing a show as spectacular as this hits you right between the eyes and it takes a while before you can gather your wits and listen to the music.
This was the debut performance, in Britain, of the band`s new work `The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway`. After hearing the album countless times, and seeing the live show I haven`t got any closer to understanding the plot, so I enjoy it on a superficial level. Gabriel plays a New York droog (Rael) who goes through a whole series of crazy dreamlike fantasy scenes. When Gabriel plays a part, he seems to become the person totally. Dressed in a leather jacket and worn denims he strutted around the stage looking like a real street punk. Some of his poses reminded me of Iggy Stooge, Lou Reed and even a touch of the Jaggers. His whole presence dominated the scenery.
They played the whole double album with only a few minutes breathing space, where Gabriel told the story. The show, as you all probably know by now, features a lot of interesting effects including a monstrous entity with self inflating warts, The Supernatural Anaesthetist, and one part where you are confronted with two Raels. The whole show didn`t solely rely on the theatrics although it wouldn`t have worked without them. After such an impressive and obviously exhausting performance, the band returned for more in the form of `Musical Box` and `Watcher Of The Skies`. Now that`s what I call showmanship.

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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 Sounds also contains articles/interviews with these people: Frank Zappa, Gladys Knight, Women In Rock, Betty Wright, Steve Harley, Peter Frampton, Labelle, Peter Skellern, Ray Davies, Larry Uttal, Chris Spedding, Anne Murray, Sweet Sensation, Bernard Purdie, Mike Harding, Ronnie Lane, Yes.
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 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.