Archive for Thin Lizzy

Great Metal Albums of 1984: Gary Moore- Victims of the Future

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 19, 2017 by 80smetalman

 

UK Album Cover

North American Album Cover

Gary Moore as a solo artist didn’t enter my radar until 1986 when I went over to England. Before that and I am ashamed of my naivety at the time, I only knew Gary as the guitarist who used to be in Thin Lizzy. Fortunately, I got a full course in the music of Gary Moore when I did get there thanks to a friend who was a big fan. As a result I got to hear lots of his albums including this one, “Victims of the Future” and I can say that my education in this subject has been top notch. Thirty years on, I have to say a special thanks to Kieran Devlin for being my teacher.

My first impressions of “Victims of the Future” as with many Gary Moore albums, now as it was then, was “He can really play a guitar.” His trademark solos permeate this album and now I am tempted to go into a rant as to how underrated he has been.  That might be true in North American terms but he has always been considered one of the greats here in Britain and of course his native Ireland. Just listen to “Shapes of Things” because that is in my opinion, his best guitar work on the album.

Many of the songs here are straight forward rock anthems. My personal favourite is “Teenage Idol” because that one comes out and hits me in the face the most. “Murder in the Skies” has a very cool guitar intro where he rips up the chords before the meat of the song comes pounding through. A look at history reveals that Gary wrote the song in protest of the Soviets shooting down Korean airline 007 in 1983. The same can be said for “The Devil in Her Heart” which is only on the US release. This is a good rocking song so I don’t know why it’s omitted from the UK version. “Law of the Jungle” is another exemplary rocker and the way it fades out makes it a great closer but he does go a little mellow with “Empty Rooms.” You can call it a ballad but he lays down some good guitar work on it.

Not only does Gary shine on “Victims of the Future,” he enlists some great musicians. Ian Paice of Deep Purple fame plays drums on half the tracks and Bob Daisley who played with Ozzy provides the bass work on two. Noddy Holder of Slade steps in to provide backing vocals on one song. The others who support may not be as recognized but they still do a magnificent job. Therefore, the album has all one needs to be great, good vocals, a steady rhythm section and of course, Gary’s guitar solos.

Track Listing (UK)

  1. Victims of the Future
  2. Teenage Idol
  3. Shapes of Things
  4. Empty Rooms
  5. Murder in the Skies
  6. Hold Onto Love
  7. All I Want
  8. Law of the Jungle

Track Listing (US)

  1. Victims of the Future
  2. Teenage Idol
  3. Devil in Her Heart
  4. Empty Rooms
  5. All I Want (cassette only)
  6.  Shapes of Things
  7. Murder in the Skies
  8. Hold Onto Love
  9. Law of the Jungle

Gary Moore

Gary Moore- guitars, vocals

Neil Murray- bass on tracks 1,3,7 & 8

Mo Foster- bass on tracks 4 & 6

Bob Daisley- bas on tracks 2 & 5

Ian Paice- drums on tracks 1,3,4 & 8

Bobby ‘Prime Time’ Chouinard- drums on tracks 2,5,6 & 7

Neil Carter- keyboards

Noddy Holder- backing vocals on “Shapes of Things”

So thirty-one years on, I have to say “thank you Kieran” for introducing me to Gary Moore and playing his albums for me, “Victims of the Future” included among them.

Other news: A band I have been promoting on 80smetalman, Black Emerald, has invited me to their album launch party in Reading, UK on February 10. Needless to say, I am excited and you will get a full report of the night’s festivities.

Next Post: Since I’m in a Gary Moore mood, it will be his 1984 live album, “We Want Moore.”

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to: https://www.amazon.com/Rock-Roll-Children-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1609763556/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1511084083&sr=8-3&keywords=michael+d+lefevre

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Great Rock/Metal Albums of 1983: Thin Lizzy- Life

Posted in 1980s, Concerts, Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 7, 2016 by 80smetalman

220px-thin_lizzy_-_life

“Thunder and Lightning” might have been the final studio album for Thin Lizzy but that didn’t mean they were in any way finished. Further along in the year, 1983, the band released the live album, “Life.” The album was recorded over a series of concerts played in September and October, predominantly taking place at the Hammersmith Odeon in London.

The closest I got to ever seeing Thin Lizzy live was seeing the tribute band, Limehouse Lizzy, in Stroud over ten years ago. It’s a shame they never came back, but I digress. Both the tribute band and this album make me regret the fact that I have never seen the actual band in concert. What I have heard in both camps here give me the impression that they would have been sensational, but no use crying over something I have no control over.

It wouldn’t have taken a computer to deduce the fact that any live album late in Thin Lizzy’s career would have been a glorified greatest hits album. Having owned their greatest hits album, (I have it on cassette), I can attest to this. Still there are some great surprises on here, starting with the fact that “Thunder and Lightning” would be the best track to open the live album or any concert. They play it just as loud and proud live, maybe more. In fact, the songs from “Thunder and Lightning” are all played rather well, “Cold Sweat” definitely gets an honourable mention here. In addition, in my mind, they pick the right songs from that album to play on this one. Saying that, I like the live version of “The Sun Goes Down.” To me it seems more sinister though it does go on even longer than on the studio version.

Of course, all the great Lizzy classics are on here and most of them are played very well live. I only have to wait to the third song to hear my all time favourite Thin Lizzy ditty and they definitely do it justice. Other notable efforts are “Emerald,” “Black Rose,” “Waiting for an Alibi,” “Hollywood (Down On Your Luck)” and if they genuinely closed their shows, with “The Rocker” like they do on the album, then it was a very wise choice indeed. A great song to go out on.

Additionally, Phil Lynott got the former Thin Lizzy guitarists to play on different numbers on the album. Gary Moore, Snowy White, Eric Bell and Brian Robertson all play on the album. I now know why “The Rocker” was such a great closer. That’s because all the guitarists mentioned as well as Sykes and Goram of course play on the final song in what Phil calls ‘The All Star Jam.” That was great to hear, it must have been mind blowing to see.

Track Listing:

  1. Thunder and Lightning
  2. Waiting for an Alibi
  3. Jailbreak
  4. Baby Please Don’t Go
  5. The Holy War
  6. Renegade
  7. Hollywood (Down on Your Luck)
  8. Got to Give it Up
  9. Angel of Death
  10. Are You Ready
  11. The Boys are Back in Town
  12. Cold Sweat
  13. Don’t Believe a Word
  14. Killer on the Loose
  15. The Sun Goes Down
  16. Emerald
  17. The Black Rose
  18. Still in Love With You
  19. The Rocker
Thin Lizzy

Thin Lizzy

Phil Lynott- bass, lead vocals

John Sykes- guitar, backing vocals

Scott Goram- guitar, backing vocals

Darren Wharton- keyboards, backing vocals

Brian Downey- drums, percussion

Guest Musicians

Gary Moore- guitar on Black Rose and The Rocker

Eric Bell- guitar on The Rocker

Brian Robertson- guitar on Emerald and The Rocker

Snowy White- guitar on Renegade, Killer on the Loose, Hollywood and The Rocker

In November of 1983, I met up with a friend who was on leave from the army after spending two years stationed in Germany. Before he left the country, he got to see Thin Lizzy’s last ever gig in Nuremberg. I don’t remember many of the details but it sounded like an amazing event. They played many of their classics more than once and “The Boys are Back in Town” three times! Boy I was jealous, still am. I have to settle for the next best thing, this live album.

Next post: Zebra

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Rock/Metal Albums of 1983: Thin Lizzy- Thunder and Lightning

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 4, 2016 by 80smetalman

Thin_Lizzy_-_Thunder_and_Lightning

Before I launch into the final studio album from one of the greatest rock bands from the 1970s, I feel I must bring to everyone’s attention the boo-boo I made on my last post. Having looked at it, I realise that I never posted the photos I took of the headline band, Twister, that night. I have since rectified this mistake and the photos are there for your viewing enjoyment. I’ve listened to a couple of Twister songs on Youtube and they’re quite good.

Yes, “Thunder and Lightning” would be the final studio album from Thin Lizzy. My first experience of this album came in 1986, when partying in my college dorm room, my new British friends and I were making a tape for my sister. A Thin Lizzy song was suggested and “Thunder and Lightning” was further suggested. Upon hearing that suggestion, the Thin Lizzy officianado in the room stated that it was the worst Thin Lizzy song you could play. Having to decide things like that for myself, I listened to the album and I never agreed with my friend’s opinion.

Whether it was the addition of John Sykes on guitar or Thin Lizzy trying to jump on the new wave of British heavy metal, (NWOBHM), “Thunder and Lightning” is the heaviest Thin Lizzy album I have experienced. The title cut opens the album and from the first notes, you know that this is a much heavier brand of Thin Lizzy. That heaviness carries on through the second song as well. However, things slow right down with “The Sun Goes Down.” This one is much slower, a rock against the tide of the rest of the album. Still, there is some good keyboard work on it and I have always been a sucker for a great slow blues guitar solo. However, the song does drag in some places.

“The Holy War” returns things to its natural pace. While not quite as hard as the first two tracks, it does deliver through the melodic hard rock avenue and it’s possibly my favourite track on the album. It’s melody is quite catchy. That track sets up the rest of the album. From then on it’s one hard tune after the other, sort of a one, two, three, four, five punch. The opening riffs of “Cold Sweat” give that away. Even then, I can still hear the what some would say as traditional Thin Lizzy coming through and there is some good soloing from both Goram and Sykes.

One song that really intrigued me on “Thunder and Lightning” is “Someday She’s Going to Hit Back.” The title suggests this is an anti- domestic abuse song and having a read of the lyrics, it seems to support that theory. Here’s the paradox. This music to this rocker is really cool with another great guitar solo. However, I fear that on account of that, the message of the lyrics gets lost in the song. Just an observation here. Then comes “Baby Please Don’t Go,” another cool hard rock song but I am left to wonder if the last song sets up this one. However, both songs lead the way out for the album which ends on a terrific closer in “Heart Attack.” Not to take anything away from the penultimate song as that’s a good one too.

Track Listing:

  1. Thunder and Lightning
  2. This is the One
  3. The Sun Goes Down
  4. The Holy War
  5. Cold Sweat
  6. Someday She’s Going to Hit Back
  7. Baby, Please Don’t Go
  8. Bad Habits
  9. Heart Attack
Thin Lizzy

Thin Lizzy

Phil Lynott- bass, lead vocals

Scott Goram- guitar, backing vocals

John Sykes- guitar, backing vocals

Darren Wharton- keyboards, backing vocals

Brian Downey- drums, percussion

Usually in the case of final albums, they are a lackluster offering from a band whose attitude is to get it done and go. This isn’t the case here with “Thunder and Lightning.” There was some good thought put into it. Some say that the lyrics aren’t up to much but that’s a technicality. The music more than makes up for it. Definitely the rockingest album from Thin Lizzy.

Next post: Thin Lizzy- Life

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

R.I.P. Jimmy Bain

Posted in Death, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 24, 2016 by 80smetalman
Jimmy Bain

Jimmy Bain

What is going on with 2016? January isn’t over and another great rocker is taken from us. This time it is Rainbow/Dio bassist Jimmy Bain. Details of his death haven’t been released but he was 68. Jimmy played with Rainbow from 1975-77 but he was best known for his time with Dio, especially on their first five albums. Less known is that he co-wrote with Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy on some of his solo albums.

Dio

Dio

Okay, some may say that Jimmy Bain wasn’t the legend that some of the others who have recently passed but for me, he was a part of the band that made my 1980s. Therefore, I too will be listening to some Dio and early Rainbow over the next few days and it’s probably a given which album I’ll be posting about next.

R.I.P. Jimmy Bain

 

 

 

 

Great Metal Albums of 1983: Motorhead- Another Perfect Day

Posted in 1980s, Death, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on January 3, 2016 by 80smetalman

220px-Motorhead_Another_Perfect_Day_Cover

It’s only right that I go out of sync a bit and write about Motorhead’s contribution to metal in 1983. I like to think that I am paying my small tribute to Lemmy and the contribution he made to music over the past four decades. I figure since I am exploring all the great albums of 1983, that I would post about Motorhead’s “Another Perfect Day” album, which came out in this year. It’s the least I could do in honouring the memory of this great man, who sadly left us this past week.

If you are looking for a big single like “Ace of Spades” on this album, there are none. There doesn’t need to be as I find that every song on “Another Perfect Day” just completely kicks ass. Things begin in true Motorhead fashion with the first two songs, loud, brash and in your face. Just how I like it with these guys. Then the third track, “Dancing on Your Grave,” has an intro that sounds like it was that of a song by Ratt or Twisted Sister. I listened with interest as this intro was nicely played but it lasts for a few seconds, then the song kicks in in true Motorhead style.

While I can’t say that there is one song that really stands out enough to be my favourite on the album as there is something to like on most of them, I do think the first half slightly outshines the second half of the album. I must stress the ‘slightly’ here because there’s not that much in it. “Another Perfect Day” is a great album!

My mistake here was to read the history behind the album. To quote Lemmy, he said “He fuckin’ hated it.” From what I read, this is down to the acquisition of Brian ‘Robbo’ Robertson on guitar who replaced Fast Eddie Clark. Robertson joined the band from Thin Lizzy and listening to “Another Perfect Day,” I would agree with the many comments that Robertson is a great technical guitarist. However, Lemmy claimed that Robertson would take seventeen hours to record one guitar track, thus making the recording of the album take much longer than normal. Then there his choice of clothing while on tour, which was not the standard denim and leather worn by Motorhead. Consequently, this led to Robertson and Taylor both leaving the band after the tour. For me, putting the behind the scenes stuff to one side, I can say that Robertson does lay down some really great guitar solos on here making me really love this album.

Track Listing:

  1. Back to the Funny Farm
  2. Shine
  3. Dancing on Your Grave
  4. Rock It
  5. One Track Mind
  6. Another Perfect Day
  7. Marching Off to War
  8. I Got Mine
  9. Tales of Glory
  10. Die You Bastard
Motorhead

Motorhead

Lemmy Kilmister- bass, vocals

Brian ‘Robbo’ Robertson- guitar

Phil ‘Philthy Animal’ Taylor- drums

Lemmy might have hated “Another Perfect Day” at the time but I love it. Saying that, he did include a few of the songs when he played live some ten years later. So my advice here is to listen to the album and completely enjoy it and don’t read about the history behind it. “Another Perfect Day” is yet another great Motorhead album.

Next post: Todd Rundgren- The Ever Popular Tortured Artists Effect

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

Great Rock/Metal Albums of 1981: Alice Cooper- Special Forces

Posted in 1980s, Concerts, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 27, 2014 by 80smetalman

220px-Acforces

Like the Thin Lizzy album in my previous post, this was another album by an established superstar of 70’s rock that passed me by back in 1981. I vaguely remember that Alice Cooper had an album out at the time and I even more vaguely remember that it was called “Special Forces” but that’s all I can remember. I never listened to it until now and if wasn’t for my fellow blogger mikledano, I wouldn’t have even done that. So, thank you Mike for enlightening me about this album.

Perhaps I can use a similar excuse to Alice for not experiencing this album back in 1981. He doesn’t remember writing or recording “Special Forces” or his next two albums due to being drunk all the time. Okay, I wasn’t drunk all the time even though the military bullshit was taking its toll on me at the time and I briefly became what is known in the military as a shitbird. But now that I have listened to it, (I got to thank youtube for that) I realise that I missed a rather good album. If Alice Cooper was drunk at the time, it might have been a good thing because “Special Forces” has some amusing songs played in well established hard rock fashion. “Vicious Rumours,” “The Prettiest Cop on the Block” and “Don’t Talk Old to Me” are all catchy, enjoyable songs. “You’re a Movie” and “Skeletons in the Closet” are just as amusing but more new wave in their sound. Still, they’re both decent songs and the one that stands out for me is “Seven and Seven Is.” For me, that song reminds me of the Alice Cooper that I came to love in the 70’s.

Track Listing:

1. Who Do You Think We Are

2. Seven and Seven Is

3. Prettiest Cop on the Block

4. Don’t Talk Old to Me

5. Generation Landslide 81(Live)

6. Skeletons in the Closet

7. You Want It, You Got It

8. You Look Good in Rags

9. You’re a Movie

10. Vicious Rumours

Alice Cooper

Alice Cooper

Alice Cooper- lead vocals

Duane Hitchings- guitar, keyboards

Mike Pinera- guitar

Erik Scott- bass

Danny Johnson- guitar

Craig Krampf- drums

“Special Forces” proves that you can put out a decent album while you’re drunk and have no recollection that you did. Now, I  could write the cliched “Imagine what he could have done if he was sober” line but I don’t think it really applies here. “Special Forces” was one of those surprise albums that make me ask myself, “Why didn’t I listen to this sooner?”

Next post: Blue Oyster Cult- Fire of Unknown Origin

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Rock/Metal Albums of 1981: Thin Lizzy- Renegade

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 23, 2014 by 80smetalman

Thin_Lizzy_-_Renegade

There were several artists in the 1970’s and early 80’s that were hard rock bands but as the latter decade progressed, some people considered them to be heavy metal acts. The next four posts will be dedicated principal artists who fell into this category and some of them accepted being called metal better than others but they all put out albums in 1981. First of these, only because I listed them first, was Thin Lizzy. It’s hard to say how they would have reacted to being labeled heavy metal since they broke up in 1983. However, I know a lot of metalheads, especially in the UK, who were heavily into them.

One critic called the 1981 “Renegade” album Thin Lizzy’s worst album. Well after listening to it, I have drawn the conclusion that if this is their worst album, I have to hear what he calls their best. I find nothing to dislike about “Renegade.” True, I thought the first two tracks, “Angel of Death” and “Renegade” started off a little proggy but the first of those quickly reverted to the more traditional Thin Lizzy sound. The rest of the album carries on sounding like the Thin Lizzy I have grown to love. “The Pressure Will Blow” and “Hollywood (Down On Your Luck)” both carry the trademark sound and in between them is the slightly more bluesier “Leave This Town.” Another point this critic made was that there were elements of NWOBHM on the album. I can definitely hear that on the song “No One Told Him” but I say there’s nothing wrong with that. With the likes of Iron Maiden, Judas Priest and Saxon around at the time, it should come as no surprise that that sound should find it’s way into Thin Lizzy’s music. I think it sounds good. One song that is noticeably different to the rest is “Fats” which has a pop/lounge act sound reminiscent of the Little River Band. What is prominent on the song is the keyboard skills of Darren Wharton who had been fully included into the band on this album. Still, “Fats” isn’t enough to make me agree with the critic’s assertion that Thin Lizzy were trying to sound pop. The critic might have said the same thing about “Mexican Blood” although that has a harder sound than “Fats” and that leads to the rocking closer “It’s Getting Dangerous.” Maybe this critic thought so little of the album because of the drug problems the band members were experiencing at the time and there are occurrences in Lynott’s voice that suggest this but at the end of the day, there is nothing I dislike about “Renegade.”

Track Listing:

1. Angel of Death

2. Renegade

3. The Pressure Will Blow

4. Leave This Town

5. Hollywood (Down on Your Luck)

6. No One Told Him

7. Fats

8. Mexican Blood

9. It’s Getting Dangerous

Thin Lizzy

Thin Lizzy

Phil Lynott- bass, lead vocals

Scott Goram- guitar, backing vocals

Snowy White- guitar, backing vocals

Darren Wharton- keyboards, backing vocals

Brian Downey- drums, percussion

Some people considered Thin Lizzy to be on their way out with this album due to the drug problems and I have to admit, I never listened to “Renegade” until recently because I believed the same. But even with all that, I found that I nearly missed a great album by one of the major bands to influence metal.

Next post: Alice Cooper- Special Forces

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London