Great Metal Albums of 1986: Mama’s Boys- Power and Passion

Something I’ve realized in my later years actually manifested itself back in 1986, I just didn’t see it at the time. That is that heavy metal transcends national borders. Attending university in London, the metalheads of the university all banded together, united in metal. When walking home from a gig one night, one of the group made the observation, “We’re a right bunch here. We have an American, a Welshman, an Englishman, an Irishman and a Northerner.” (The Northerner was from Blackpool in the north of England.) Proof then that heavy metal can unite the world! I do recall this event in “Rock and Roll Children.” Why am I telling this story? Because it was the Irishman in the group, actually he was from Northern Ireland, who introduced me to a band from his homeland, Mama’s Boys.

I had heard the name Mama’s Boys before I arrived in the UK but my local record store in the US did not stock any of their albums. They were rather useless. It was my new friend Kieran, (the Patrick character in “Rock and Roll Children” is based on him), who opened my eyes to the band via their album, “Power and Passion” and I was very glad about that.

“Power and Passion” is a straight-forward 80s heavy metal album. There is simply some great musicianship combined with some great hooks in many of the songs. It has a decent opener in “Hard’n Loud” and there are hooks a plenty on the slower, more bluesy track, “Needle in the Groove.” Some great intro riffs and a cool guitar solo on “Run” and there is an interesting instrumental in the form of penultimate track, “The Professor II.” More straight ahead rockers and a closer which will make you come back to the album again and again. However, the song that does it most for me is “Lettin’ Go.” This track defines the album the best. Some great hard rocking riffs, a pounding rhythm section while keeping to their more melodic metal sound and of course, another great guitar solo.

If the three McManus brothers were to keep to the guitar, bass, drum formula, they would have still sounded great. No one can question the commitment and talent of these three but they do contribute their Gaelic roots by adding such instruments as a fiddle, whistles and bagpipes. This makes them even more unique and this album even better!

Track Listing:

  1. Hard’n Loud
  2. Straight Forward (No Looking Back)
  3. Lettin’ Go
  4. Needle in the Groove
  5. Run
  6. Power and Passion
  7. Don’t Tell Mama
  8. The Professor II
  9. Let’s Get High
Mama’s Boys

Pat McManus- guitar, fiddle, backing vocals

John McManus- bass, lead vocals, backing vocals, low whistle, tin whistle uilleann bagpipes (Irish bagpipes)

Tommy McManus- drums, bodhran drum (Irish drum), backing vocals

With all the metal bands coming out all over the world, it seems only natural that there would be at least one from Northern Ireland. With “Power and Passion,” Mama’s Boys do their country and heavy metal proud.

Next post: Wrathchild- Trash Queens

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at:

11 Responses to “Great Metal Albums of 1986: Mama’s Boys- Power and Passion”

  1. I bought the first two albums. They were a talented bunch of bros. Too bad one of them passed on. Always liked Straight Forward No Looking Back and Needle In The Groove. Great tracks as Pat was a talented singer and guitar slinger!
    Nice throwback writeup Fella!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have never heard of these guys. I am sure I missed a lot back in the day.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m with 2Loud, never heard of them, but I missed a bunch (I was the jazz and CanCon pop kid for years). That kid I was might’ve laughed, mama’s boy was an insult, where I grew up, as in ‘can’t handle tough stuff yourself, gotta run home to mama.’ Etc. Ah, childhood.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: