I nice rare find this one, as it’s now out of print. It’s a split 7″ released by Southern Lord Records in 2001 featuring The Obsessed and The Mystick Krewe of Clearlight both covering Lynyrd Skynyrd. New Orleans’ own Mystick Krewe churns out a low, lazy, and groovy version of “Cheatin’ Woman” made even better by a guest appearance from Pepper Keenan (COC, Down) on vocals. Wino and crew do a ballsy rendition of “On the Hunt” which is given extra drive by Dale Crover of the Melvins who joins in as a second drummer.
This one is going way back… all the way back to 1980. We’re talking pre-Kerrang! here folks (which didn’t launch until ’81). While there were more professional acts on the scene — Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Saxon, Def Leppard, and Diamond Head to name a few — who had all signed to major labels, out of Newcastle came a small label that would become home for a much scrappier group of British heavy metal bands.
Neat Records was responsible for introducing punters to the likes of Raven, Tygers of Pan Tang, Tank, Blitzkrieg, Fist, and most notoriously Venom. For Americans who don’t know, Neat was the precursor to American metal labels like Metal Blade and Megaforce (especially since Brian Slagel cut his teeth reviewing Neat vinyl and John Zazula sold a ton of them). This gem here, procured from a nice chap in the UK via ebay, was the sixth single released by Neat in 1980. Unfortunately for Americans, we only got to see the bad Raven. I’m talking the era where they started wearing BMX motorcycle gear, staged pro-wrestling matches during their shows, and wrote really really really bad songs like “On and On.” The Raven on this single however, was a fantastic band. A great example of punk creeping into Metal to give it a little more energy. Still somewhere between bluesy heavy rock and speed metal, with that great raw and dirty mix. You can’t deny the energy on “Don’t Need Your Money.” Such a fantastic old school riff. “Wiped Out” matches it perfectly. Combined together, 8 minutes of hi-energy old school metal and out.
One of the all-time great Joe Strummer intros to a song: “This is a public service announcement…with guitars!”
I was never a big fan of Combat Rock but I always loved this song (much in the same way that I’ve never been able to come around to Sandinista but still really dig “Police On My Back”). I recently watched Don Letts’ Punk Attitude documentary again and when this song came on, I was determined to find the 7″ single. It is one my favorite late-era Clash songs. You can’t deny that punchy rhythm and Strummer’s dark political rant. The B-side — “First Night Back in London” — was never actually released on album. It is one of those interesting Simenon songs, always a little off-kilter, but still good nonetheless. “First Night Back in London” was supposed to be included on the original incarnation of Combat Rock, a double-album (ala Sandinista), called Rat Patrol at Fort Bragg, which was ultimately scrapped, remixed, and cut down to a single disc.
This is the original Klark Kent 7″ released on green vinyl from Kryptone Records in 1978 with “Don’t Care” on the A-side and “Thrills” and “Office Girls” on the b-side. I got hooked on this just after hearing the stellar I.R.S. Greatest Hits Vol. 2 & 3, which included versions of the latter two songs. “Don’t Care” is an okay song, but in my opinion, “Office Girls” and “Thrills” are two of the better songs Stewart Copeland ever wrote, up there with “On Any Other Day” and “Fall Out.” Also interesting since it is Stewart playing all the music, so that quirkiness of style is ever present. The music has great energy and still has some of the punk influence (it was released the same year as Outlandos d’Amour). Here’s a live version of “Don’t Care” with Stewart backed up by a few guys you may recognize in the monkey masks.
I found this rare little gem at the awesome Monster Melodies in Paris. Sadly, this is the EP that broke up the classic lineup of Motörhead (Lemmy Kilmister, Fast Eddie Clarke, and Philthy “Animal” Taylor). Apparently, Clarke couldn’t stomach the idea of Lemmy singing a duet of Tammy Wynette’s “Stand by Your Man” with Wendy O. Williams and walked out during the recording sessions, leaving the band altogether. It is a shame, especially since this is great 7″ and right in line with Motörhead’s output up until that time. The duet between Lemmy and Wendy O. is of course stellar — hypercharged, bombastic, and great fun. Philthy Taylor drives the song with his drumming while Lemmy and Wendy O. trade off on the verse lines. The b-side version of “No Class,” with Wendy O. singing in Lemmy’s place, is actually quite good as well. Her scratchy, raw vocals fit the song and give it a slightly punkier feel. Despite what I’ve read in various places (including Wikipedia), the Plasmatics and Motörhead do not cover each others songs on the b-sides. Clarke did not play on the recordings (and even bailed on producing the EP). So it is actually a mix of Motörhead and Plasmatics members playing all the songs together — Lemmy on bass, Philthy on drums, Wes Beech on rhythm guitar, and Richie Stotts on lead guitar. If you can find it, this one is worth it for the rendition of “Stand By Your Man” alone.