N.I.B

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Black Sabbath

So much has been written and said about Sabbath, sometimes you gotta just shut the fuck up and listen to it again.

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Formed in Birmingham in around 1968 Sabbath would probably have won a ‘least likely to succeed’ award, unless you saw them…. Then you would know. 

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James Daubeney
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Bullfrog Blues

rory-gallagher

Rory Gallagher

Hard drinking Irish guitar virtuoso, Rory Gallagher really just wanted to play his guitar.  He didn’t have time for stardom or all the rock star trivialities.  In my opinion his best stuff is on his live albums, he just seems to do the most amazing guitar work in his live sets.

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I discuss Rory in The Story of Rock and Roll and the whole ”how does it feel to be the best guitarist in the world” thing.  For the purposes of this post let’s just say that Rory Gallagher was a phenomenon and he deserves far more recognition than he gets.  If you just buy the live album Irish Tour ’74 you will know. 

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James Daubeney
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All the Way From Memphis

mott-the-hoople

Mott the Hoople

There are some bands that just never seem to ‘make it’ but then 10 years on all the bands that are really doing well credit that band with being one of their biggest influences.  Bands like Diamond Head, The New York Dolls, The Misfits, MC5, Iggy and the Stooges and this band, Mott the Hoople.  Ian Hunter is one of the most charismatic front men ever.  There is just something about him, his voice and his whole style, Mott should have been bigger than they were at the time.

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I found a clip of Mott doing some TV show and they just shine, the audience however should all be taken outside and shot.  I found it painful to watch a band this fantastic playing to a bunch of ingrates and so I found another clip of far worse quality but far more representative of just how great Mott the Hoople were.   

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James Daubeney
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Aqualung

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Jethro Tull

For many years I considered Jethro Tull’s Bursting Out Live to be the best live album I had ever heard.  Tull took musicianship and witty live banter to new levels of excellence and that album made me buy Aqualung which in its day was considered a heavy metal album.  Aqualung to this day is one of the finest albums ever made.

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I used to get so sick an tired of hearing idiots think that Ian Anderson was Jethro Tull.  I got through it by using it as an IQ test.  Tull made some fantastic albums and after a bit of a lull in the early 80’s they came back as a 3 piece with Crest of a Knave in 1987 giving ZZ Top a run for their money when it comes to putting commercial sheen on a band that was anything but.  I saw Tull twice, the first time at Standard Bank arena in about 1994 and then again in 2007.  The first show was one of the best I have ever seen, I will never forget watching Ian Anderson downing a Castle Lager behind the PA system during a drum solo.  The second time was a fuck up, he asked the crowd to stop whistling while he was playing a flute solo.  If you want South Africans to start whistling, then ask them to stop.  Even people who weren’t whistling started after that request.  He walked off the stage and we fucked off home very disappointed. 

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James Daubeney
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Dreamer Deceiver

LAS VEGAS - MAY 25:  Judas Priest guitarist K.K. Downing (L) and singer Rob Halford perform during the VH1 Rock Honors at the Mandalay Bay Events Center on May 25, 2006 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Judas Priest

Judas Priest are legends, in my view no-one put metal on the map the way Priest did and they kept it alive during the lean years.  With all that disco crap going on in the 70’s you could rely on Judas Priest to keep delivering album after album of blistering metal.  When British Steel was released it changed the way things were done by metal bands.  It was a monstrously good album and quickly scooped up new fans who had never heard of the band.  As with happened Metallica die hard pioneers like myself selfishly felt bitter sweet about a band we loved suddenly being on the radio and having to deal with arseholes talking about this ‘new band’.  The funny thing is they never sold out: the world just caught up and took a giant leap forward in terms of musical taste.  All Hail the Priest \m/

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This Priest Classic freed me from religion for life.  I am not sure why but it just hit a chord with me and set my mind free.  This video clip is from the Old Grey Whistle Test and not what would normally be considered as a typical Judas Priest video.  The band were clearly still finding their feet and were not yet considered the metal gods.  I think it is a fascinating glimpse of where Priest came from given what everyone else was doing at the time. 

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James Daubeney

This video was from the 1980 classic ‘Metal Gods’ off British Steel released in 1980.  I include it here because this is what Priest became and this is how they will be remembered.  It is a great contrast to the first video where you can clearly see how the band were finding their way out of a sort of hippie Zeppelin look into something that would define the band and the whole Metal genre. 

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James Daubeney
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