SRC - Black Sheep (2000)

Primordial late 60s Detroit rock from SRC -- at the time thought of as the chief rival of the now much more reverently remembered MC5 -- but still a pile-driving juggernaut of 60s stoner rock! This set collects the best of groups album tracks and singles cut for Capitol Records in 1968 and 1969 -- driving, feedback guitar, heavy drums and organ licks -- which like the MC5 was born of adherence to blues and R&B, but steeped mightily in heaving 60s rock -- the murky flipside of the psychedelic scene!


The SRC was formed by Scott Richardson, the Chosen Few lead singer, with local band The Fugitives, which featured Glenn Quackenbush, Gary Quackenbush & E.G. Clawson, all based in Ann Arbor. Jeep Holland, manager of The Rationals, became their manager and suggested Richardson as lead singer. Bass player Robin Dale was added later.

Holland, also a record store manager, later served as Russ Gibb's booking agent and was associated with many of the top Detroit based artists of his time such as MC5, The Thyme, and others. The Quackenbush brothers went to see Richardson at one of the final Chosen Few gigs at the Ann Arbor Armory, run by Pete Andrews (later SRC's manager). They formed the Scott Richard Case, later known as SRC.

Upon the addition of Richardson, the original lineup included: Scott Richardson (vocals), Steve Lyman (rhythm guitar and vocals), Gary Quackenbush (lead guitar), Glenn Quackenbush (organ), Robin Dale (bass and vocals) and E.G. Clawson (drums). Richardson was influenced by the Pretty Things and based the SRC stage show on this. The band recorded its first single "Who's that Girl"/"I'm So Glad", the latter a cover of a Skip James song, and released it to moderate reviews. However, fan reaction was good enough for the band's members to choose to drop out of Eastern Michigan University to work on their music, a risk at the time as draft-eligible men were potentially subject to mandatory military duty in Vietnam.

Soon the band's sound became more psychedelic, influenced by the likes of Procol Harum, for whom the band would later open. Their self-titled debut album was released by Capitol Records, and the single "Black Sheep"/"Morning Mood" from this album drew fan and media praise. "Black Sheep", considered a psychedelic masterpiece, was released only in mono for the single, as an abridged version with different guitar sound and notation. The album version, recorded in well-blended as opposed to ping-pong stereo, then still in use by some of the more limited recording studios in 1968, featured a longer mid-section with additional verses.

Later verses continue in the mode of unusual lyrics in the vein of psychedelic quest, again followed by a second deliberate, stretched dual lead guitar break that fades ever so slowly into infinity. "Marionette", "Onesimpletask", and "Refugeve" offer additional examples of the expanded guitar and keyboard style developed by the Quackenbush brothers Gary (guitar) and Glenn (Hammond organ), along with their musically adventurous bandmates. Plodding, articulate and heavy drums often complement the essence of the psychedelic realm depicted by the entire debut album. (BUY IT!)


Tommy Bolin - Live @ Ebbets Field (1974)

Tommy Bolin began playing in bands around Sioux City as a youth before moving to Boulder, Colorado, in his late teens. He had played in a band called American Standard before joining Ethereal Zephyr, a band named after a train that ran between Denver and Chicago. When record companies became interested, the name was shortened to Zephyr. This band included Bolin on guitar, David Givens on bass, and Givens' wife Candice Givens on vocals. The band had begun to do larger venues, opening for more established acts such as Led Zeppelin. Their second album, entitled Going Back to Colorado, featured a new drummer, Bobby Berge, who would pop up from time to time in musician credits in album liner notes from Bolin's later projects.

1973 found him as Domenic Troiano's replacement, who had replaced Joe Walsh, in the James Gang. He had two records with this band: Bang! in 1973 and Miami in 1974.

In the start of 1975 Bolin contributed some studio guitar assistance to Canadian band Moxy during the recording of their debut album; the original and obscure vinyl LP for Moxy is especially sought after by die-hard Bolin fans these days. Later in 1975 saw the release of Bolin's first and highly anticipated solo record, Teaser, on the Nemperor label, and Deep Purple's Come Taste the Band on the Purple label. The Deep Purple world tour that followed in 1975 and 1976 allowed Bolin to showcase one song per night from Teaser. During this period, however, it became apparent that he had a heroin addiction. This addiction led to a rumor that some of Deep Purple's overseas concerts were marred by Bolin being unable to play due to a paralyzed left arm, the result of a bad injection. Subsequent reports state that Bolin did ingest morphine and fell asleep on his arm the wrong way that caused nerve damage,in fact they went to an acupuncturist to cure it.

Bolin's tour for Private Eyes would be his last. The cost of keeping a band on the road and his heavy drug addiction forced him into the restrictive position as a supporting act. In his last concert dates, he opened for Peter Frampton and Jeff Beck, though said dates were marred with technical problems and unreliable performances. However, his final show, in which he opened for Jeff Beck on December 3, 1976, encored with a rendition of "Post Toastee." He also posed for a photo with Jeff Beck after the show. In one account of his last hours, Bolin was found unconscious shortly following the show. The management, who by some reports did not want any additional negative publicity about the tour, had him taken to his room with his new girlfriend in order to look after him. By morning, Bolin's health had become worse. Valeria, his Swiss girlfriend, feared for his life and called for an ambulance. When paramedics arrived, Bolin was pronounced dead. He was 25 years old. In other accounts, his death followed a night of hard partying that had involved beer, champagne, barbiturates, cocaine and finally morphine. This combination caused his throat muscles to constrict severely and he suffocated throughout the course of the night.


Bang (1971)

"Bang never got big -- although they did share stages with everyone from Alice Cooper to the Allman Brothers to Chuck Berry to Funkadelic to Black Sabbath themselves, apparently had a #1 hit in Hong Kong and at one point owned their own private plane! They released three albums in their career (for a US major label in fact) plus they recorded some singles and made an entire unreleased album as well. Bang, especially on their first self-titled album, bore a remarkable resemblance to the Sabs, which was really unusual for their era, when heavy bands were more likely to copy Zeppelin or Purple or just be stuck in the '60s. Kinda lo-fi, but quite heavy, "Bang" delivers doomy hard rock, with a kinda Comus-y Pagan slant, that also brings to mind the most powerful early King Crimson. Like most heavy bands of the period, Bang weren't cognizant of the "metal" concept, and probably saw themselves as a pop rock group -- a dark and psychedelic pop rock group to be sure -- and so sometimes the hard riffing lets up to allow for some happier or more gentle fare, which is not always a bad thing anyway." (BUY IT @ aquariusrecords.org)


Ave De Veludo - Electrico Blues (Brazil 1984)

Cleaning out my hard drive this week - here's one that I know absolutely NOTHING about. Sadly, I can't find much on the web on them (at least in a language I can understand). This record delivers what the title promises: Electrico Blues. Please enjoy.


One St. Stephen (1975)

"Don L. Patterson was the mastermind behind One St. Stephen. Interestingly, Patterson's original artistic focus wasn't music, rather film. Accordingly, the mid-'70s found him working on a film project tentatively entitled "The Devil's Reservation". As part of the project in 1975 he went into Cincinnati's Owl Studios, writing and recording an album's worth of material (he also handled lead vocals, lead guitar, produced and designed the album cover). Word of mouth interest led Patterson to finish the project and finance a limited pressing (reportedly some 2,000 copies) for friends and acquaintances. Patterson's subsequently claimed that he made his money back within three months.

So tell us about this sought after classic ... First off, lots of reference works draw comparisons between Patterson and Jim Morrison and the Doors. Unfortunately, if you're looking for The Doors, "One St. Stephen" probably won't do much for you. True, on a couple of tracks ("November" and "Nightly Drift"). Patterson's mannered vocals bore a mild comparison to Morrison, but that was pretty much where the comparison stopped. Exemplified by original material such as "November Edgar", "Without You" and "In Your Mind" most of the album had a fairly mainstream rock sound. Blessed with an attractive and versatile voice (check out the second side where he displays his versatility), Patterson also proved an impressive guitarist and synth player. Personal favorites, the proto-punkish "You Maybe Religious" and the psych-influenced ballad "Silver Children". Unlike many rarities, this one clearly lives up to the hype (though you may not want to shell out $600-$700 for an original copy). Consistently appealing, the album also exhibits a level of production that is far above most contemporary independent sets. The album achieved considerable attention throughout Ohio and the Midwest leading to a contract offer from at least one major label. Interested in painting and film, Patterson reportedly turned the offer down." (thanks, Bad Cat Records)


Midnight - Into the Night (1977)

"Local Chicago garage hardrock with a Doorsy '69-70 sound despite the release year. Covers all the bases with lots of rocking stuff, some moody introspectives, boogie moves, a doomy Sabbathish attempt etc. Pretty decent for the genre and a cool mid-60s Vox organ sound all through is a plus." (acid archives)

"...very rare 70s hard rocker with organ and raunchy guitar moves like a primitive mix of the Doors and Deep Purple." (BUY IT!)


Electro Harmonix Work Band - State of the Art Electronic Devices (1977)

"In 1977 Electro Harmonix recorded an LP by Mike Matthews and his work band demonstrating the 'state of the art electronic devices'."

Independence Day Party, July 4, 1979, U.S. Ambassador’s Residence, Moscow

(left to right): Kenney Richardson, Manny Zapata, Charles (Cookie) Cook, Mike Matthews, Willie Magee, Bob Bednarz (standing), Larry De Marco, and Paul Staff.

"At curtain rise, six musicians are standing in front of a luminescent tapestry of atomic spirals, symbols, and words rotating and flashing. The crowd that has gathered to hear them is packed arm-to-arm, scarcely able to move. Everyone is pouring sweat. The temperature seems to be over 100 F. All these neatly dressed people are excited to be here, and hearing the famous Americans. But something between suspicion and curiosity immobilizes their faces, and they stare at the stage with strange eyes. Caught at just one instant, in the permanence of a photograph,this audience appears to be stunned,or horrified,or sleepy,or sad,or perhaps thinking,“you’ve got to be kidding!” Then Willie Magee,who once played guitar in Harlem’s famed Apollo Theatre, motions the Electro-Harmonix Work Band to begin with a certain number by K.C. and the Sunshine Band, in C, all at once 98 decibels of “Shake Your Body” are echoing through Sokolniki Park and nearby Red Square and bringing the news to the better part of downtown Moscow.

Paul Staff in goggles, satin, and American flag motif shirt waits for his cue and then swings in acrobatically from the band pavilion’s dome-like ceiling, narrowly missing the lead guitarist Larry DeMarco’s eye (it bleeds; the show goes on).The president of the company,Mike Matthews, is putting down a heavy lead on the electric piano through the all-time best-selling electronic music accessory, the “Small Stone,” alongside the bass of Kenney Richardson. Charles (Cookie) Cook on drums completes the ensemble. And though the group has never played together before, and has not practiced one song before their performing debut, by the end of this two-week Russia gig all bands members will agree that this was the hottest, most energetic, most memorable music experience of their lives." (more of this story... PDF LINK)


American Eagle (1970)

Not a lot of info about this one floating around the interwebs, but here are some short bios of 2 former band members:

Rob Lowery was lead vocalist for The Galaxies. He joined when he was about 14 and spent 6 years with the group. When he was twenty he went on to join national recording artists, "The Surprise Package" (aka The Viceroys) which was produced by Lee Hazelwood and put out the album Free Up, in 1969, plus several single recordings. After leaving Hazelwood's record company the group changed their name to American Eagle and put out another album titled “American Eagle” in 1972, on Decca records. This album was played throughout the nation and was popular in Germany and Sweden. Although the band never gained the notoriety it deserved, they were the opening act for major rock groups of the time including: The Beach Boys, Led Zeppelin and Jethro Tull. Rob left the music industry in the early nineties to raise a family and began a successful career as an antiques dealer in Seattle (Classic Antiques) and ultimately opening Cafe Neo combining it within the antique store to create a unique dining and antiquing experience. Currently he is the owner of income property in Seattle and Everett.


Greg Beck started playing guitar in his early teens. In the music community he is known as, not only a well rounded, experienced player, but also as a very tasteful musician. His passion for music was fired by such diverse influences as jazz/funk guitarist Howard Roberts, R&B grooves by Freddie King and Ray Charles, rock flavors from the Beatles, Stones, and Clapton and a long list leading to varied contemporary artists. As a member of the Viceroys with Fred, Greg was inducted into the Hall of Fame. Together also in The Surprise Package and American Eagle, for seven years on albums and concerts they played and sang along side of music giants for thousands of people.


Friction - '79 Live (Japan 1980)

"Friction is a late-'70s/early-'80s Japanese punk band formed by their bassist/singer/frontman ("Reck") who spent the better part of a year in NYC during the No Wave heyday. Like a lot of the better Japanese rock bands past and present, they took something great and tweaked it in another direction that still displays their love of the initial inspiration. There is a stripped down Contortions element to Friction (Sure enough, Reck played with Contortions and Teenage Jesus) but they are better described as a noir-ish, No Wave version of Crime. As recognizable as their influences may be, they are inarguably primal, energetic and seminal sounding, and the No Wave influence only informs their jaggedness and angular edge. In the end, these recordings capture the snarly-cool punk rock attitude as vividly as any reissue I've heard. It rocks." (Forced Exposure)

"When this excellent live album first surfaced a coupla years ago, I gots to admit it was a delightful revelation to me to experience Friction sounding as I imagine their leader Reck had originally intended. Indeed, with three decades and several oceans between us, and the dryness of their original studio sound herein replaced by the inevitable sonic spillage of a cheap concert recording, the catchiness of Friction’s racket finally made perfect sense, as Reck’s driving bass melded together with Chico Hige’s drums and Tsunematsu Masatoshi’s splashy-scratchy guitar to create a triple-headed post-punk behemoth. Heck, even Reck’s overly arch J. Rotten vocals now sounded less like Butler Rep’s dental drool and more like a genuine lead vocalist proposition, as really fucking catchy Japanglish choruses – admittedly often of barely more than a coupla duplicated words’ duration – emerged from the dungeonous gloop. But whereas the repeated vocals of songs such as ‘A-Gas’ (‘Gas mask, gas gas gas, gas tank, gas gas gas, anarchy’) and ‘Cycle Dance’ (‘Red light switch, black light switch, white light switch, switch, switch, switch, switch’) added little more than a glimpse of humanoid personality to Friction’s dislocated ‘Cloud 149’-meets-NO NEW YORK muse, elsewhere Reck’s still highly minimalist vocals contained choruses catchily hefty enough to corral momentarily some of the wild atonal funk tableaux into which they had been released." (via Head Heritage)


Judas (Philippines 1975)

I wish I knew more about this record - what I don't know about Pinoy rock could fill a frigging warehouse. This album, sung in Tagalog, is chock full of fuzz, has a couple of nice blues-rock tracks and even a cover of Great Balls of Fire. Have a listen. And as always, enjoy.


Mother's Finest (1973)

(Thank you Mettle H for the correction...)

A post-Sly race- and gender-integrated funk-rock band, Mother's Finest is stylistically somewhere between Rufus and Funkadelic, though they never achieved anywhere near the cultural impact of either. To a certain extent, Mother's Finest fell into the "Apartheid-Oriented Radio" trap, in which any African-American rocker between Jimi Hendrix and Vernon Reid - leaving Prince out of the discussion for now - was unable to get mainstream media attention.

It's not exactly unfair that fellow outcasts Funkadelic have achieved latter-day veneration as psychedelic funk/rock pioneers while the Finest haven't - Funkadelic was far more innovative, unpredictable and influential, plus they flat-out wrote better songs - but taken on their own terms Mother's Finest has pleasures to offer. Lead vocals are traded between Joyce Kennedy (who recalls Tina Turner's mix of roughness and control) and Glenn Murdock, original rhythm section "Wyzard" and "B.B. Queen" kept an enviable pocket, and the band has written most of its own material.

The band's debut on RCA; this didn't chart after, the band says, record company-imposed instrumental "sweetening" was added to the raw tracks. Instrumentation includes lots of organ - if the only thing you know about two early 70s acts is that one used organ and the other clavinet, go with the clavinet - and some vaguely churchy piano ("Sweeten The Air You Breathe") while the lyrics are mostly hippie well-wishing and bad puns ("You'll Like It Hear"). If that seems a bit dated for 1973, well, it was: songs like "You Make Me Feel So Good" sound like Rotary Connection circa 1968. But they do hit on a couple of steady grooves ("You'll Like It Here") and the rhythm section holds up their end even when everyone else doesn't ("Dear Sir And Brother Mann"). (review by Wilson & Alroy's Record Reviews)


Rod St. James - Has Anybody Seen the Superstar (1972)

"A superb slice of the swinging seventies as seen through the eyes of one contender to the throne... Rod St James. Originally released on the small budget label Paula in 1972, this obscure psych/soul/folk rock album is a superb example of years gone by and lost in aging summer sands with flairs and sunglasses to match. Very little is known about Rod... information is thin on the ground but those who have heard this album always rate it extremely high. Contains some great heavy guitar work (wailing fuzz and wha-wha), funky percussion, trippy organ, with laid-back cool-phased hippie vocals. The second half of the album showcasing a more 'folky' feel. One of the more mainstream sounding albums to be released on Radioactive, but if you're after a sound that sums up an era... this is the album. Think Donovan meets James Taylor meets Paul Williams." (buy it @ Forced Exposure)

"Three Quarters of an Hour"


Mother's Finest (1976)

Mother's Finest is a funk rock band founded in Atlanta, Georgia by Joyce Kennedy and Glenn Murdock in the early 1970s. The group charted with the singles "Fire" (#93 Pop Singles), "Baby Love" (#79 Black Singles, #58 Pop Singles), "Don't Wanna Come Back" (#54 Black Singles), "Love Changes" (#26 Black Singles), and "Piece Of The Rock" in the mid to late 1970s.

Mother's Finest are notable partly because they are an "interracial" rock group from the US South. Their music was a blend of funky rhythm, heavy guitars and expressive rock singing. Their album Mother's Finest from 1976 today is a rare collector's piece and contained with the ironic song "Niggizz Can't Sing Rock'n Roll" (although they were criticized for it by an important religious leader and dropped it from their live concerts). In the summer of 1977, they opened for The Who in their laser lit tour through Canada. An unusual choice of opening acts, they impressed with their performance and choreographed stage show. In 1978 they were guests in German broadcast Rockpalast and with one concert they gathered a cult status in Europe which lasts until today (this concert appears on the DVD Mother's Finest - At Rockpalast).

Mother's Finest was well respected within the southern rock musical community. Their fellow Epic Records label-mates The Stranger would play "Another Mother Further" as their introductory music. (via wikipedia)

"Niggizz Can't Sing Rock'n Roll"


Black Nasty - Talking to the People (1973)

Black Nasty were a little-known but decent group in the early-'70s Detroit funk scene, following the path of the Parliament/Funkadelic crowd in mixing rock, psychedelic, soul, and funk influences. They recorded a fair album for Stax that was released in 1973, but wasn't a heavy seller. After losing their contract with Stax (which would soon go out of business anyway) in 1975, they changed into different R&B acts that would have a little more commercial success.

Black Nasty's mentor was Johnnie Mae Matthews, a singer who owned several independent Detroit R&B labels, including Northern, Reel, Audrey, Jam, Art, Big Hit, and Tank. Matthews also recorded more than two dozen singles under her own name. Though none were notable successes, she continued her involvement in the artistic side of the music business by encouraging her drummer son, Artwell, when he formed a band in the mid-'60s with his cousin, bassist Mark Patterson, and friends. Originally called Raw Integrated Funk, there were prominent rock elements at the outset (Ted Nugent was an early member), but under the influence of Johnnie Mae Matthews, they broadened their style to include more R&B. After putting out a cover of the Supremes' "You Keep Me Hanging' On" on Tank, they were signed to Stax, for which they recorded three singles and an album between 1971 and 1974. The Stax sessions (all of the singles also appeared on the album) were produced by Johnnie Mae Matthews and Sir Mack Rice, the minor but noted Detroit soul singer. Rice had recommended Black Nasty to Stax after starting work at the label as a songwriter. While their records were more promise than payoff, the album did have an interesting mix of funk with hard rock guitar, soul ballads on which Johnnie Mae Matthews' teenage daughter Audrey took lead, and some socially conscious compositions that reflected black urban life of the early '70s. After the album made little impact, Stax dropped Black Nasty, which changed their name to Nazty and recorded a couple of singles for Excello. After some personnel changes, the group became ADC Band, getting an R&B Top Ten hit with "Long Stroke" in 1978 and recording as late as the mid-'80s.


Various - Cazumbi: African Sixties Garage vol. 1

"Warning! This not an Afro-beat or Afro-rock compilation. The music on this record is strictly '60s garage as you might expect it! Dwarf, ghost, soul from another world -- it's the African definition for Cazumbi! You probably always thought such countries, except South Africa, had nothing to contribute to the '60s garage scene. But it seems our little world still has virgin places for the obscure garage 45s diggers before going to Mars. Here you have a surprising compilation of very, very rare tracks taken from 45s released in Congo, Angola, Mozambique and South Africa. Garage rock, garage surf, powerful '60s R & B -- an amazing collection with groups such as H20 (Mozambique), who had even carton boxes among their instruments, a rare track by the A-Cads, the incredibly rare Kriptons from Angola, an Italian-sung (!) great cover of the Prunes' 'I Had Too Much To Dream' by Conjunto Oliveira Muge in Mozambique, the eerie French sung 'Eh Bien Mon Ami' by African Fiesta."


Various - World in Sound Tracks - Episode 1

Sampler compilation of tracks from the WIS label. Contains one exclusive, never-before released track -- a Krautrock version of Peter Thomas' "Orion" by the band Those, recorded in MPS studios in 1971 ("it was originally released on the same as label as Mammut -- and listen to it -- it's a true Kraut Monster"). "This CD from World in Sound celebrates the 40th anniversary of the Summer of Love, a youth-driven revolution, expressed in music, challenging conservative values of conformity and materialism, and opposing the war in Vietnam. Since 1999, World In Sound has built a solid international reputation, providing to serious and novice collectors an extraordinary range of psychedelic, progressive, folk, garage, blues/heavy rock and jazz/rock from unheralded artists of the '60s and '70s. World In Sound Tracks - Episode 1 features 20 innovative tracks from late '60s and early '70s, a bus load of artists capturing the emotion and passion of the time with energy and craft to rival the likes of Led Zeppelin, The Doors, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Frank Zappa, Jefferson Airplane. Take a listen and be both pleasantly surprised and a just a little bit annoyed that you haven't heard these folks before. The tracks showcase strong vocals and instrumental prowess, combining interesting rhythms and displaying a wide variety of lead instruments, including the Hammond/Farfisa organ, fuzz/wahwah guitars, violin, sitar, saxophone -- something for every taste. With 79 minutes of professionally remastered, original recordings, the CD packs a 16-page booklet with lyrics and rare photos chosen to enhance the experience: authentic music from a golden age, timeless and still fresh, a potential masterpiece of the era, a Holy Grail for music fans! The project has been made possible by the generous support of the artists and the passion of our audience of collectors to inspire the search for hidden gems. World In Sound Tracks - Episode 1 provides a perfect soundtrack for the Summer of Love: poetic, melodic, emotional, sunny, euphoric, dramatic, sometimes experimental, and always intense. We're pretty sure you missed them the first time; here's a second chance not to be missed!" (BUY IT @ FORCED EXPOSURE)


Acid Eater - Virulent Fuzz Punk A.C.I.D. (Japan 2007)

Not to be confused with the Christine 23 Onna record of the same name (although both are fronted by Japanoise legend Masonna), this Acid Eater is a blown out blast of ultradistorto organ drenched spaced out primitive garage rock stomp.

Imagine the heaviest, most fuzzed out garage rock you've ever heard, now take that and run it through a handful of distortion pedals, a bank of Acid Mothers worthy FX, blast it through a wall of busted old Vox amps, wrap the whole thing in feedback and reverb, and suddenly you're in some alien alternate future where the world is populated exclusively by Japanese noiserock beatniks, who are constantly blasting fuzzed out walls of overblown sixties sounds from their low flying spacecraft...

Imagine if Merzbow remixed your favorite Fuzztones record, or the Stooges released records on PSF and were augmented by some insane drug addled organist with WAY too many amps. Serpentine blues rock riffs, all tangled up with thick warbling organs, the vocals a snarling distorted howl, buried in the mix, and all dubbed out, the drums a crumbling, percussive pound, somehow as in the red as the rest of the instruments, every cymbal crash swallowing up all the other sounds, but it's the riffs, and the organ, and Masonna's wild eyed vocalizing that keep this blacklight space garage party going. Not to mention the killer hooks... Virulent Fuzz Punk A.C.I.D. perfectly captures how intense and freaked out it must be to experience this sound live, super distorted, feedback everywhere, the instruments in your face, the speakers threatening to blow, sweat, blood, spit, a swirling chaotic musical melee, heavy, distorted, fuzzy and funky, wild and woolly, spaced out and gloriously gloriously noisy. (BUY IT @ AQUARIUS RECORDS)


Hounds - Unleashed (1978)

"We're 1980's rock 'n roll," says Hounds leader-founder John Hunter, Chicago native and, like the other band members, a seasoned veteran of Midwestern rock, nearly a genre unto its own these days. "By its very nature," explains Hunter, "rock 'n roll is steeped in rebellion. Hounds' messages are contemporary. They are not just sex & sleeze. They're not just street fighting. There's more involved in it, and there's still rebellion. in the '60's, rock 'n roll was more than an art form - it was political as well. Today, I'm not sure where the Hounds are going to end up politically. I think one of the Hounds' functions - or missions – is to shake up the people a bit. I want them to like us or to hate us, but react to the music either way. I want the music to make them think."

In Chicago, where Hounds have passed from semi-legendary street-cult status to genuine historical fact, the popular reaction has been all that Hunter could ask for. Come friday afternoons around 5 P.M., listeners of a dozen radio stations in the area have been known to salivate like Pavolv's dogs at the prospect of hearing Hounds Anthem, "Drugland Weekend," one more time. One station has it pegged as it's "most requested" number of 1976 and 1977 - notwithstanding the fact that they were programming it off a demo tape (which also included "The Alleys of Love," Hounds set opener) and the sides were not for sale in any record store.

With the release of the Hounds' debut album, UNLEASHED (March 1978), the latter problem is solved in no uncertain terms. At the same time, three years of scuffling (and several lifetimes of dues-paying) make it all worthwhile. There have been some times! "We really were starving at one point," recalls Hunter. "We did a tour of Wyoming, of all places, and sometimes we didn't have enough money for a motel room, so we'd sleep on park benches. Hey it was coarse." (more @ The Hounds' Myspace)