Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Ariel - Rock & Roll Scars (1975 australian progressive rock, 2002 RareVision reissue - MP3 320K and WavPack)

Lovingly re-mastered Ariel album dedicated to the memory of the late Ariel drummer John Lee, with the bonus inclusion of the single Yeah Tonight.

Some people think this is the definitive guitar band that Rudd and Putt had to this point - which is not saying much as it was the only guitar band they had to this point.

It is true to say that the re-interpretations of the Spectrum /Murtceps material compare favourably with the originals, and the superb Abbey Road / Air Studios sound fairly leaps out of the speakers.

Ariel's first album A Strange Fantastic Dream made the national Top 10 and garnered praise from legendary English DJ John Peel.

His endorsement resulted in EMI arranging for the band to record their next album at Abbey Road Studios in London. Only problem was, the band had broken up!

Gaze, Macara and Mills were out, leaving Rudd and Putt to pick up the pieces, which they promptly did, hiring ex-Dingoes drummer John Lee and guitarist Harvey James (ex- Mississippi) for Ariel, Mk ll.

Buoyed by their pending trip to the UK, the four musicians convened in Sydney to record 'The"Jellabad Mutant', Rudd's projected science-fiction concept album, in preparation for the demos to be polished at Abbey Road prior to the album's release.
What release? EMI Australia rejected the demos as 'unsuitable' on the eve of Ariel's arrival in London.

So here they were, booked into Abbey Road (oh yeah, EMI had also slashed their budget, giving them one week to record and one more to mix) with nothing new to record and with a band that was barely months old.

As he had done many times before and would continue to do throughout his 40-year career, Rudd rose to the occasion delivering the vibrant 'Rock & Roll Scars', made up of re-recorded versions of Spectrum and early Ariel material with three new songs he'd somehow had time to write.

Blessed with an exceptional lead guitarist in James, Rudd arranged many of the songs to accommodate his first keyboardless band.

'Keep on Dancing' (a Top 20 single in Australia), 'Rock & Roll Scars', 'Real Meanie' and 'Men in Grey Raincoats' are brilliantly conceived guitar, bass and drums rock'n'roll, full of diving rhythms, enthusiastic vocals and fiery guitar solos.

Of the older songs, Spectrum's 'I'll Be Gone', with its Tommy Steele meets the Goons intro, 'Launching Place Part ll' (Part I was 'I'll Be Gone' B side), 'We Are Indelible' and 'What the World Needs (Is a New Pair of Sox)' fit comfortably into their new guise.

What a treat to be able to revisit these two essential albums, re-mastered with additional sleeve notes from Ariel's original producer Peter Dawkins.

Ariel - Launching Place Part II:

Track list:
01. Keep on Dancing (With Me) (2:54)
02. I'll Be Going / I'll Be Gone (4:19)
03. Rock & Roll Scars (3:44)
04. Real Meanie (4:08)
05. Men in Grey Raincoats (3:22)
06. Launching Place Part II (2:24)
07. We are Indelible (2:42)
08. What the World Needs (is a New Pair of Socks) (3:16)
09. Red Hot Momma (2:36)
10. Some Good Advice (5:45)
11. I am the Laughing Man (2:45)
Bonus Tracks on CD
12. Yeah Tonight (3:09)
13. I am the Laughing Man (alt. version) (2:57)

- Mike Rudd - Lead Vocals, Guitars, Harmonica
- Bill Putt - Bass
- Glyn Mason - Guitars, Vocals
- Harvey James - Guitars
- John Lee - Drums

[ Thank you NELWIZARD for sending this post ]
Rip and scans made by Transgressions, torrents,thank you so much friend!
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