Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Moth Balls

Stack Waddy were a hairy buncha slovenly bastards from Manchester with a neanderthal knack for amping up old rhythm 'n' blues gems and early rock 'n' roll standards into something a little more visceral..  Here's their self-titled LP, recorded in 1970 but unfortunately held back til early '71 due to John Peel's Dandelion label having a few distribution problems..  Ultimately costing the band valuable momentum during the feeding-frenzy of the 'heavy UK blues boom' of the early '70's..  Comin' on like early Sabbath (Ozzy was a big fan and used to turn out for shows) meets The Sonics (via an overwhelming R 'n 'B / R 'n' R fixation) and, prone as I am to over-stating my comparative propositions, in this case I'm not drawing the comparisons lightly (honest)!  Massively under-rated stuff here for sure..  Shaggy, blue-collar, back-to-basics boozy-boogie-woozy with lumbering licks aplenty, always sounding encouragingly fierce even when they'd slowed things down to a crawling growl..  Expanding upon their intrinsic garagey vibes and wherever necessary condensing the grooves into their most essential arrangements..  A cranky quartet who imbued their raggedy-arsed rhythmical interpretations with a heavy shambling syncopation and topped it all off with the imploring guttersnipe howls of a rasping brickie for a frontman..  John Knail would alternate between a gruff alcoholic croon and several sweaty-bucket attempts to out-honk Beefheart or Edgar Broughton, all in between puffing on a gasper and occasionally tootin' that ol' harmonica son.. Phew!  Ten triple-distilled tracks on the original LP fortified here by nine previously unreleased bonus tracks of comparable calibre..  Play loud as always and don't forget, further understanding can always be facilitated by providing your own counterpoint in the background: i.e. the tinkling of ice in your glass, the steady flick 'n' click of your lighter, a sharp inspiration of breath followed invariably by the grateful exhalation of any residual fumes and vapours..  Hmmm..

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