Here's the second part in this Cosmic Lava section. This time my friend Rolf Kowalski is responsible for all reviews and I've added only a few words. He's a die-hard collector of 60's and 70's Rock and we both have chosen some forgotten heavy pearls. If you have any questions, please feel free and mail to: rolf-kowalski (at) web (dot) de
DOGFEET - s/t
This album was released on Reflection Records but you can also get the cheaper limited reissue (500 copies) on Lava Records. Although DOGFEET aren't so heavy as the other bands in this section, except a few parts in songs like "Now I Know" or "On The Road" it's still a very good album. You can hear very long and psychedelic guitar-parts and especially the softer b-side is full of outstanding and shining guitarwork, also very psychedelic. Like most bands in this period DOGFEET have only released this album.
HACKENSACK - Live The Hardway
This is an unofficial bootleg CD on Audio Archives, that has been released in 1996. The CD contains one long gig that has been recorded in 1973 in Switzerland and four bonus live-tracks, recorded in the same year at the Clifton College, Nottingham UK. This UK-based band has been formed in 1969 by vocalist Nicky Moore, who later joined the well-known SAMSON. HACKENSACK played nearly 260 gigs until 1972. Due to the reason, that they were an awesome and forceful live band they have build a small but solid fan-base. Their first album "Up The Hardway", released in 1973 on Polydor is a bit dissappointing for me, because there are only two outstanding heavy hitter on it but the rest is more AOR-oriented. I guess, that Polydor had forced the band to write more commercial material, because when you listen to this CD it sounds as if you were listen to two different bands, not only because of the rough recordings of both gigs. "Live The Hardway" is incredible heavy, comparable with very early Budgie but Nicky Moore's powerhouse-vocals are very different from the high-pitched Budgie style. The outstanding title-track of the debut isn't on this CD, but just listen to powerful tracks as "Rock And Roll Woman" or "Ordinary Girl". I prefer the Switzerland gig and if you see this rare CD somewhere than get it. Highly recommended!
INCREDIBLE HOG - Volume 1
This band was formed at the beginning of the 70's in the heydays of the British blues rock. But INCREDIBLE HOG wanted more than only playing blues rock and so they mixed it up with sheer brutal heaviness and the result is ultra heavy blues rock played in godly way. "Volume 1" has been released in 1973 in the UK on Dart Records and in Germany on Telefunken. Shortly after the album, the band put out one single with the devastating "Lame" on the a-side and "Warning" on the other. You can find both tracks on this album. After that, the band made a short club-tour in England and split-up in 1973, due to the lack of any commercial success. Drummer Tony Awin later joined The Crazy World Of Arthur Brown and after it, believe it or not, he teamed up with James Last to earn some money. The other two members Ken Gorden and Jim Holmes are still working in the music buisness, but in a total different genre. I will close this review with a few words that are included on the Repertoire reissue CD, which describes the music perfect: "Warning! This is Incredible Hog Rock - Mean , Hard, Evil Driving Sounds from London's East Side, Keep it Loud - If you can take it!
JPT SCARE BAND - Sleeping Sickness
This US power trio exsisted from '73 - '76 and it's a bit sad that they never released an official LP. But for that case there's the fine label Monster Records, who have discovered the tapes of the JPT SCARE BAND and put them on CD. Three of the seven tracks on this album are instrumental, where the band get totally lost in an excessive jam rush. Especially "King Rat" is a good example for it where the guitar howls and screams all the time. This is a record, no Heavy Rock veteran can be without it. JPT SCARE BAND were very hard and heavy for this time. Monster Records have also released two LP's of this band, and one track isn't on this CD. It's not easy to find this two LP's and I'm still searching for the first one, titled "Acid Acetate Excursion". If you've got and your rid of it, please contact me.
SOLID GROUND - Made in Rock
SOLID GROUND was founded back in 1974 and were the hardest Swedish act at that time. They've released one single in 1975 and in 1976 they released this masterpiece in a limited edition of 200 copies on Scam. That's the reason why the original costs around $800, but that's what it's worth. But there's also a re-release on Mellotronen, with the single track as a bonus.The album kicks off with "Saturday Rare (Handrock)", a very heavy driven opener like almost every song on "Made in Rock". There's a unique drum-sound on this album, that makes it sounding very natural and earthy. Two other tracks, that I really like are "Tombstone Kiss" and "Rock N Roller". Both are so heavy, that they could have been played in the 90's. This album is a real heavy pearl so watch out for it and buy it!
TRUTH AND JANEY - No Rest for The Wicked
Originally formed under the name TRUTH in 1969 in Iowa, USA, with drummer John Fillingsworth who didn't stayed to long in the line-up. This powertrio was named after a record of Jeff Beck. In 1972 they've released their first single and in 1973 the next one, both in a limited edition of 1000 copies and both were selling very good. But than something happened, what nobody of the band expected. Another band named TRUTH have released a LP on a major label and so the band was forced to change their name into TRUTH AND JANEY. Between '73 - '75 they band played thousands of gigs, together with Leslie West and they've played together with Blue Öyster Cult in Davenport, Iowa at a festival in front of 20000 Hardrock fans. Finally in 1976, the debut album was released on Montrose Records in a limited edition of 1000 copies. Due to this reason, the original is very expensive ($400), but you can get the re-release on Monster Records with four bonus tracks (both singles). The album shows, why TRUTH AND JANEY were one of the hardest US powertrios at their time. The album starts with the ultra-heavy "Down the road I go" and closes with the ultra-heavy "My Mind". They've turned the Stones classic "Under my thumb" 1972 into a heavy rock number, which was the flipside of the first single. There are also two other cover versions on this album, "I'm ready" from Willie Dixon and "Ain't no Tellin" from John Hurt, where TRUTH AND JANEY are showing us their love for the Bluesrock, like almost every trio in the 70's but they were more heavier.Aside of this album, you can also get the live vinyl bootleg "All Sold Out Now!", and I wish I had seen them live. A total heavy sonic assault!
AINIGMA - Diluvium
The group was founded in 1972 by Wolfgang Netzer and Michael KlÃ¼ter and AINIGMA exsisted for two years but they have only left for us this wonderful album. The original pressing is one of the hardest to find privat releases that came out of Germany and collectors are paying nearly 300$ for the original. The sound of this three-piece is easy to describe: it's total heaviness, very very loud and simply great.
I would compare them with Deep Purple or early Uriah Heep. It's organ-based heaviness but also very dreamy, for all those brothers who want to take a psychedelic journey. This album contains five very long tracks and one of my faves is the title-track that is over ten minutes long, where AINIGMA are showing the musical abilities. But every track is a killer.The cover of the re-issue is different to the original, but still very fine and it's one of my favourite cover-artworks. When it comes to uncompromising German heavy rock, this is one of the best records of this time. It's sad that this killer band has only released one album.
BLUES ADDICTS - s/t
Out of Denmark comes this four-piece and their music can be described as very hard-played blues rock. This album was released in 1970 on Spectator Records and the original is very expensive today. But you can get the limited reissue on Little Wing Of Refugees label with a slight altered cover-artwork. Let me talk about the more important part of this album...the music.The rough sound of the recordings emphasis the heaviness of the sound, but everything on this album is very heavy. It's not necessary to point out a few songs, because the whole album is brilliant and it's also very hard to compare this bands to others, maybe only the Swedish November or early Blue Cheer. But the BLUES ADDICTS are rougher and with 'Gibber' Thomson, they've got an over-the-top vocalist in their line-up. The dirty guitar-sound and the fat fuzzy bass-sound is one of the best I've ever heard.
DARK - Round The Edges
Out of the ashes of the forerunner WICKED LADY comes DARK and they were one of the best UK-based hard prog acts of the 70's. This album has been released in 1972 on a privat label and it's one of the most expensive records of all time, due to the fact that there are only 60 copies around worlwide. Gladly you can get a limited copy on Akarma Records. All tracks are very long and dominated by a massive fuzz-laden wall-of-guitars. They're showing their softer side with the eight minutes long track "Live For Today", that starts very psychedelic and quiet and ends up into a total guitar assault. A few last words to WICKED LADY, which have never released an official album. But there's a limited record titled "Blow Your Mind" on Xotic Records, which contains material from '69-'72 but this one is hard to find. In a magazine I've read that WICKED LADY has been described as 'drugged-out biker acid rock" and it fits totally. This one is also very recommandable for everyone who's not familiar with DARK.