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Once A Rocker, Always A Rocker

MCA (1983)
Rating: 9/10

Joe Perry is back! After nearly two years of waiting since his excellent I’ve Got The Rock’N’Rolls Again, he’s produced another storming album. Out have gone all of his old backing band and in have come three fresh new faces. The singer, Cowboy Mach Bell, looks like a heavy metal Barbara Cartland, but he definitely delivers the goods.

Side one kicks off with the title track; a nice guitar riff at the beginning, then it’s heads down rock from there on. ‘Black Velvet Pants’ follows with some great saxophone playing from Jim Biggins. Next up is one of my favourite tracks on the LP, ‘Women In Chains’. It starts off with Mr. Perry plucking at his Strat, then it’s straight into the no nonsense balls to the wall rock. Mach Bell does in places remind me of Steven Tyler.

‘Four Guns West’ and ‘Crossfire’ close this side. I think ‘Crossfire’ sounds the closest to Aerosmith since Joe Perry left them. The guitar work is very similar to ‘Walk This Way’ at the beginning, and there’s some fine sax playing at the end.

‘Adrianna’ starts the flip side off, then it’s straight into ‘King Of The Kings’, a song about a whore which has a real wicked bass solo in the middle. The next track, ‘Bang A Gong’, is the only disappointment on the album. It’s a remake of the old T. Rex hit ‘Get It On’ (‘Bang A Gong’ was the title for the US release), but as much as I like T. Rex, this version sucks a big one.

Next, it’s straight back to the rock’n’roll with ‘Walk With Me Sally’, sounding like ‘Long Tall Sally’ it also has some great honky-tonk piano playing and Joe really shines through with some shit-hot soloing. The LP finishes with ‘Never Wanna Stop’. As they say, all good things have to end, which is a shame, because this is a first class rock LP, not all out heavy metal.

I urge every rock fan to check it out.

Dave Shaw

Review taken from Metal Forces, Issue 2 (1983)

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