Welcome, friends, to another edition of Classic Rock’s Tracks Of The Week, where we handpick choice cuts of new rock’n’roll for your delectation and assessment. Last week’s top three were as follows, in reverse order:
3. Joe Satriani – Thunder High On The Mountain
2. Black Country Communion – The Last Song For My Resting Place
1. Pop Evil – Waking Lions
Congratulations and celebrations for them! Now who will sway your vote this week? Some top stuff in here, from big fish and newer/smaller fish alike, so get stuck in, then vote for your favourite. But first, a lil’ spin of last week’s first prize winner Pop Evil…
Electric Mary – Woman
Now that’s how you start the weekend; four majestically hirsute specimens of men with a tonne of amps in a really big field (background mountains included; we’re guessing this is Electric Mary’s native Australia), riffing the crap of their instruments in the name of hearty, no-bullshit rock’n’roll. YES.
Neil Young + Promise Of The Real – Already Great
The inimitable singing/songwriting icon teams up with Lukas Nelson (yes Willie Nelson’s son) and friends on this swaying, keys-pounding piece of bluesy rootsiness. It’s as if early 70s-era Young had a jam with Little Feat and The White Stripes, which we can totally get on board with.
Hannah Wicklund & The Steppin’ Stones – Bomb Through The Breeze
Accompanied in this video by a cast of bunnies, python, vines, funky foliage and some psychedelic filming FX, Hannah Wicklund blends bluesy sensibilities with tasty wah guitar and jutting rhythm – with notes of (gutsier) Fleetwood Mac in the mix. Today leading the band she formed as a nine-year-old, the South Carolina-born (now Nashville-based) singer/guitarist is one to watch out for.
J.D. Hangover – Mr Williamson
A nicely macabre blast of organ opens this early blues-meets-dirty garage rock highlight from J.D. Hangover’s self-titled album – followed swiftly by shrieks of slide guitar. Sounding more like something recorded in a tin can (somewhere remote in Texas, with rattlesnakes slithering past) than the work of a London artiste (which J.D. is), if this is what a hangover sounds like in musical form, maybe it’s not so bad.
Battleme – Misfit Honey Bear
Debonair Texan rocker Matt Drenik brings us the latest taste of his new album (under the Battleme moniker) Cult Psychotica, complete with cute dancing bears and one of the finest ‘OW!’ cries in modern rock.
Thunder – Christmas Day
Ohhhhhh GOD not some premature ham-fest of sleigh bells and fucking christmas jumpers accompanied by some drippy crooning about Santa under the christmas tree… Oh no wait, actually this isn’t like that at all. It’s rather lovely – a bit spine-tingling, even, in places – swapping over-egged festive fare for subtlety and bittersweet melodic shifts. Nice one, Thunder.
Marilyn Manson – God’s Gonna Cut You Down
And just for something completely contrasting, how about Marilyn Manson doing a really menacing cover of this traditional blues/folk song (famously done by Johnny Cash among others)? Ooh go on then. Mmmm husky…
Black Sabbath – N.I.B
It’s an irresistibly hooky Sabbath classic (‘nahnahnahnah, nah nah, nahnahnahnah!’), and now it’s captured in Birmingham’s finest’s filmed swansong show The End. Oh yes, this is the end. Until Ozzy plays Download next year. But otherwise it’s the end.