|Southside Rock 'n' Roll, Shotgun
Raucous Records, RAUCD 127
2002 was a very special year for Shotgun as they celebrated 25 years of rockin'. Although somewhat overshadowed by 50 years since the crowning of the Queen and 25 years since the passing of the King. Shotgun mark their own jubilee with the release of "Southside Rock 'n' Roll".
At first I was a little puzzled as to why Wild Bob Burgos asked me to write the liner notes for Shotgun's 25th anniversary release - surely there are people who were there in the late 1970s to witness Shotgun's emergence from the booming rock 'n' roll and rhythm & blues scenes of London's Southside, who would be far better qualified for the task than me. But hearing "Southside Rock 'n' Roll" made me realise that this isn't an excuse to reminisce about past glories, but to celebrate the fact that Shotgun remain a force to be reckoned with 25 years after their formation. Whilst other bands would choose to mark their quarter-century with a retrospective collection highlighting their glory days, Shotgun instead opt to release an album of brand new material - and it has to be said, they sound as fresh and dynamic as ever on this superb set of blasting rebel rockabilly and powerhouse rock 'n' roll. And anyway, fortunatly for me, Shotgun's rich history has been already examined in-depth within the liner notes of their previous albums, written by people older and wiser than myself.
So, just what does "Southside Rock 'n' Roll" hold in store? Nothing less than you would expect from Shotgun. It's an explosive mix of brand new uptempo originals, interspersed with carefully selected covers, including songs from the pen of rockabilly hero Ray Campi and rock 'n' roll legend Little Richard. The revival of "Feel So Bad", which Bob wrote during his days with Matchbox, is a welcome surpise. This first appeared on the "Setting The Woods On Fire" album, for which Bob can proudly boast a gold disc. In short, this album is true and dynamic, real rock 'n' roll performed by four guys who's combined musical pedigree is unmatchable, but more importantly, who capture the true spirit of rock 'n' roll and rockabilly simply through their love and dedication to their music. You can enjoy "Southside Rock 'n' Roll" in the knowledge that 25 years has seen very few changes in one of Bratain's truest rock 'n' roll bands - a great achievement in a world where things seem to move with ever increasing speed.
Howard Raucous, September 2002.
When I read the above liner notes on this superb newly recorded album, which represents a milestone in British rock 'n' roll music, I figured I couldn't do any better myself. Howard says it all very beautifully, and the album itself is as good as it gets. I've always been a true fan of Bob Burgos (hence the number of pages dedicated to the Sledghammer of Rock 'n' Roll on my website) and I'm proud to call him a friend, although I haven't met him for quite a while. Guess it's about time we got us a couple beers together again Bob. I'm buying!
The BlackCat, Januari 2003
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