Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Tough As Nuts (70's)

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To be honest (as so I often am) I have been putting this episode off as it really isn’t my speciality. Despite it not being a favourite genre, I was always going to do it due to the importance of many of these bands. Though some may hate me for doing it, others would hate me more for not. While it may be defined as metal, it bears little resemblance to some of the heavy metal infecting our modern ears today, which I would happily put under the category of noise rather than music. No these are the ‘classic metal’ bands from before the metal name (in my humblest of opinions of course) was tarnished and the musicianship here is tops. On that topic, this genre put a lot of emphasis on the guitar ranging from simple, addictive riffs to the ultimate in guitar craziness. Many of these bands gathered huge followings and even reached the point of being worshipped, thus it is very sacred territory I’m treading here. I may not really be into it but that doesn’t mean I can’t see quality when presented with it. Yes here are some great songs which even non-fans of the genre should enjoy, a rather bellisimo collection if I may say so myself.

Smoke On The Water – Deep Purple
Dare I say the most well-known song in this group. You’d be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t recognise the riff and harder a guitarist who can’t play it. It may be simple but it’s a classic

Immigrant Song – Led Zeppelin
Definitely a favourite song from this genre and a song from this genre that’s a favourite (there’s a difference). With friends that love this band, I really tried to get into them, however an unfortunate occurrence put me off. In my typical fashion, I already had about 5 albums of theirs waiting to be explored on my music player so I decided to embark on a random Led Zeppelin session. However one of the albums I had happened to be a live album, containing a 20 or so minute drum solo. When it came on, I sat patiently; waiting for something, anything, to join these lonely drums, but it never came. The frustration of this turned me off I think, as well as the fact I don’t think they’re really my type. This song however, is definitely my type.

She Shook Me All Night Long – AC/DC
One of the biggest bands of all time came out of Australia? Yes, believe it or not, we produced something decent. Their records have sold millions and their influence deep-seeded. Again my knowledge of them is rather limited, not spreading much further than TNT however for this special occasion I thought I’d go out and find something different. Like a true Australian, I’ve shown no faith in home-made products and picked a song by the replacement, yet equally influential lead singer, Englishman Brian Johnson.

Iron Man – Black Sabbath
Everybody knows Black Sabbath, they’re the band headed by the infamous Ozzy Ozbourne who was known for biting the heads off bats on stage….True or not, it’s a nice image. One of the earliest and most influential metal bands, they’re music was often associated with darker areas such as drugs and the occult. My listening to them was no more than listening to an unknown CD once or twice however upon hearing this I instantly recognised it for some reason - more than enough reason for using it. Generally I’m not a fan of long songs but with Black Sabbath there really isn’t much choice.

Panama – Van Halen
Van Halen are known for their guitar solos, which, while pretty mild in this song, can get pretty crazy. I don’t mean to criticise but this song sounds awfully similar to ‘jump’, released in the same year, though both are good songs. Speaking of release dates, I’m shocked to discover this was actually released in the mid-eighties, so much for my usual rigid checks. Ah well, it’s too late now, and besides, they belong more to this genre than any eighties category. So just pretend for my sake


jane said...

hard to comment on your thingy's when i basically agree with you completely.
all really good songs. have you got any good songs that aren't mega smash hits from this time?

jane said...

oh yeah.. and that acdc song's riff. sounds oddly oddly familiar, not because the song is wildly famous but because i think i studied a riff like that in music once. by acdc, but not this song. recycling material
going to find out what the name of the song was
back in black? sounds very similar

angry ant is gay said...

ok. obviously i am highly confused. they are completely different.

Peter said...

are you finished yet?