|Starlight Rock 'n' Bop, The Helldivers
Wild Hare Records RB05001
Wild Hare Records proudly announces the new and improved Helldivers. Going back to the roots of rock 'n roll, these cats (Ace and Johnny) have laid down 14 tracks of primal rockabilly. Much of the CD is acoustically driven with no drums and all of the tracks are reminiscent of early Johnny Carroll or rock 'n' roll Trio cuts. It is raw and very hillbilly rockin'. All songs were written by Ace or Johnny with the exception of a fine cut of Drifting Cowboy Joe Penny's "Real live doll".
The recordings took place over a period of 4 months. All tracks are recorded to glorious analog tape, utilizing vintage microphones in single tracks with no overdubs or attempts to make the music perfect. The liner notes are handled by Historic Rocker Pat Cupp, who states that "The Helldivers has captured the raw sounds of the 1950's". I couldn't agree more.
Turn back the hands of time to a steamy night somewhere in Memphis in the mid fifties, then visit your local recording studio and see how sparse it really is as far as equiptment goes. OK, so you don't have a time machine, so you'll have to do the next best thing, put this CD on your player and crank up the handle a few turns, adjust the volume to ear shattering and settle back for a treat.
These guys have a realistic semi-accoustic style and it was recorded live to tape so there is no electronic foolery to hide the mistakes, what you end up with is a "warts and all" show case of some of the best "real" rockabilly that I have heard for a few years. I have a reputation for being blunt in my reviews and I make no apologies for that, I think if you are expected to drop some hard earned cash on the counter then you should expect to get value for money. This album fits that bill, but having said that , please remember that not all tastes are the same. Get your dealer to play a few tracks or visit the Helldivers web site and sample the tracks there and I'm sure you'll be hooked. 4 Stars.
Starlight Rock 'n' Bop / Real Live Doll / Lucky Penny / True Blue Lover / Lonesome Wind / Feel So Bad / Hot Rod Boogie / Tough Tops Gone / Yeah She's Mine / Rhythm Gonna Rock You / Street Angel House Devil / Jet Plane Jump / Up A Pole / Water Boilin'
Ace Brown - Lead Guitar, Lead Vocals
Johnny Bones - Upright Bass, Backing Vocals
Dave Moore - Rhythm Guitar, Engineer
Nic Antonetti - Rhythm Guitar
Phone: +1 (724) 8221784
Wild Hare Records
908 New Hope Road
WV 25411 - USA
Reviewed by CancerMan Mark, 2005