Great Rock Albums of 1984: Molly Hatchet- The Deed is Done

In the mid and late 1980s, there was a belief that whenever a hard rock or heavy metal band incorporated keyboards into their sound, they had sold out and were trying to sound more commercial friendly. Yes, this was the case for a good number of bands back then and Molly Hatchet were accused of the same when guitarist Steve Holland was replaced with keyboards player John Galvin, who had played with Danny Joe Brown when he had his own band. Sure, the band moved away from their Southern Rock stylings to a more commercial friendly arena rock sound but their 1984 album, “The Deed is Done” is by no means in any shape or form a sell out.

While there are notable differences with this album and their very famous hard smashing album “Flirtin’ With Disaster,” the hard rock sound is there for all to hear. Even with two guitars, Molly Hatchet really rock out on the album, the keyboards only give it a more melodic back ground. The most prominent examples are the two tracks released as singles, “Satisfied Man” and the one I prefer slightly more, “Stone in Your Heart.” These are both rockers with John’s keyboards providing excellent melodic back up. Unlike so many bands who tried using keyboards, Molly Hatchet does it right here and unfortunately, this is why the album didn’t sell as well as the fore mentioned biggie. Some metalheads scoffed at the use of keyboards while mainstream trendies were put off by the hard guitars and labelled them heavy metal. That’s another issue about the 1980s, but I’ll save that for another time.

As for the rest of the tracks, they cook as well and the now guitar duo of Duane Rolands and Dave Hlubeck show that even with two guitars, they can still kick ass. There is many a good hard rock song on “The Deed is Done” to be heard. However, if someone moaned about them using keyboards, then that person might have really been freaked out by the use of a saxophone on the track, “She Does She Does.” What younger metalheads didn’t understand in the 80s was that saxophones were employed very well in many a good rock song throughout the ages and it is done very well on this track. And while Molly Hatchet may have moved a little away from their Southern Boogie Rock sound, it is still there in the tracks, “Heartbreak Radio” and “I Ain’t Got You”. In fact, the second half of the album really rocks. “Good Smoke and Whiskey” wasn’t only a great track, it was my theme song for a while. However, my personal favourite on this album has to be “Man on the Run.” The old style of Molly Hatchet is stamped on it from the very beginning and the keyboards, like on the hits, provide the necessary support. This song is probably the best example of how you can incorporate the old Hatchet with the new. So what you do get with “The Deed is Done” is a more melodic hard rock sound in places but with the traditional southern sound not completely forgotten. It does make an excellent combination to the open minded.

Going on a little more about the keyboards, John Galvin is definitely underrated in this position. Some have compared him to Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Billy Powell, probably because their both from Southern Rock bands. Like Southern Rock bands, the piano is given that honky tonk sound which only works with bands like these two giants. However, John’s work with organs and synthesizers can’t be ignored because he plays them well. Oh yes, with all the talk about keyboards, I forgot to mention that the album also marked the return of Bruce Crump on drums. It was good to hear him return on the album.

Track Listing:

  1. Satisfied Man
  2. Backstabber
  3. She Does She Does
  4. Intro Piece
  5. Stone In Your Heart
  6. Man on the Run
  7. Good Smoke and Whiskey
  8. Heartbreak Radio
  9. I Ain’t Got You
  10. Straight Shooter
  11. Song For the Children

Molly Hatchet

Danny Joe Brown- vocals

Duane Rolands- guitar

Dave Hlubeck- guitar

John Galvin- keyboards

Riff West- bass

Bruce Crump- drums

Additional Musicians

Jim Horn- saxophone

Jimi Jamison, Tom DeLuca, Steve Bassett, Terry Manning- background vocals

I think that I’ve established before the metal court that “The Deed is Done” album was in no way a sell out for Molly Hatchet. While the album marks a departure from their traditional Southern sound, it still rocks and rocks hard. It’s just a shame there were too many musically narrow minded people around in the mid 1980s who didn’t give the album a chance.

Next post: Blackfoot- Vertical Smiles

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to: https://www.amazon.com/Rock-Roll-Children-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1609763556/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1503214910&sr=8-7&keywords=michael+d+lefevre

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 Responses to “Great Rock Albums of 1984: Molly Hatchet- The Deed is Done”

  1. Great stuff. Still being a teenage D&D freak at heart, I’ve always really loved their LP covers too.

    Liked by 1 person

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