Here is the usual prologue.
My blogger pal Deke over at Thunder Bay had a cool Northern Hemisphere Summertime Series between July and August. Each week, he wrote about albums he spun during the summer.
Well, the real Earth summer is between December, January and February in the Southern Hemisphere. So the good act that Thunder Bay is, boarded a Qantas plane, landed in Sydney, survived 14 days quarantine in a Sydney hotel and is finally here to present the “Thunder Bay Down Under Summertime Series”.
How good is Rose Tattoo as a band name?
The debut album dropped in November 1978, produced by Harry Vanda and George Young from The Easybeats, who also did double time for AC/DC up until they got their U.S deal.
And if anyone is not aware, George Young is the older brother of Malcolm and Angus Young.
Rose Tattoo was formed in 1976 by Peter Wells, bassist for Australian heavy metal band “Buffalo”, who wanted to create a tougher blues rock/slide-guitar band.
The band for the album is Angry Anderson on vocals. Peter Wells is on slide guitar and Mick Cocks is on lead guitar/rhythm guitar. Drums are by Dallas “Digger” Royall and bass guitar duties are by Geordie Leach on the majority of the tracks and Ian Rilen is on three of em.
“Rock ‘N’ Roll Outlaw” kicks it off, with its “Whole Lotta Love” influenced riff and some tasty slide guitar. Lyrically, it’s all about trying to make it in a rock and roll band. Bon Scott wrote about it in “Rock ‘N’ Roll Singer” and “Long Way To The Top” just to name a few.
Keel covered the song in 1987 for a movie soundtrack. LA Guns did it for a covers album. And this song went to number 1 in Switzerland and number 6 in Germany with the title as “Rock And Roll Gypsy” by U.S singer Helen Schneider.
The punky “Nice Boys” is up next, a track that Guns ‘N’ Roses used to cover in their early club days. It appeared on their “Live ?!*@ Like a Suicide” EP and it was later re-released on their 1988 EP “GN’R Lies”. According to Wikipedia, Axl Rose and Izzy Stradlin have both claimed that Rose Tattoo changed their lives and the band confirmed to them that their own future would be in rock ‘n’ roll.
“The Butcher And Fast Eddy” has the groove of “The Jack” about a showdown between gangs. “One Of The Boys” is one of those 12 bar blues boogie songs common in the 70’s. “Remedy” has that “Long Way To The Top” pattern, sped up and whiskey’d up.
How good is the “Bad Boy For Love” guitar riff, a boogie woogie head banging blues riff?
If you like ZZ Top in all of their blues glory, then there is no way you can’t like this song.
“Tramp”, “T.V” and “Astral Wally” continue the 12 bar blues on punk steroids, while “Stuck On You” is as a subtle as the fish named Sam in the lyrics, who lived in a bowl, so Angry heated up the water so he wouldn’t get cold.
Underpinning it all is Angry Anderson’s voice, which can be rough like Lemmy and street ready barroom brawling like Bon Scott. A perfect combo.
Crank it up and let the sounds of Australia fill your room.
6 thoughts on “Thunder Bay Down Under Summertime Spin Series – Rose Tattoo”
That is band that never got their due over here. Too bad.
Yes I agree. They became really influential locally and their barroom brawling music definitely became popular especially when they released “We Can’t Be Beaten” a few years after this release.
John is right they never got there due here. As you mentioned Izzy and Axl had more to do with finding out who they were on Bad Boys…
Also did read about them in Kerrang as well but could never find there stuff in the stores here unless it was in the import section which as a kid on an allowance I could not afford. lol
Dont get me started on the import tax we had to pay. Grrrrrr. Lol.
Damn, that Butcher putting his sister out on the street at 15 is brutal. I thought I was a bad bro. Yikes! Vivid, tense track for my first time listening. I’d seen the band name in magazines but thought they’d also penned Radar Love. My bad, that’s the Dutch Golden Earring.
Angry Anderson lives up to his stage name. Wow, He seems more loaded w/ attitude than his sleeves have ink. Yeah, great band name.
Thanks for checking em out. Angry Anderson for his small size is definitely a person you wouldn’t want to have messed with in his younger days.
His vocal style is basically from his life style I suppose.
And no one messes with The Butcher, not even Fast Eddy. Lol.