Monday, January 12, 2009

Help me now: was there in fact a better British hard rock vocalist of the 1970s than Brian Connolly of The Sweet?

I mean, just look at the competition (all great, of course, well I can only take Freddie in small doses)

Robert Plant? Nah, too gaseous.

Ozzy Osbourne? Nah, too nasal.

Paul Rodgers? Nah, too blues-bore-y.

Freddie Mercury? Nah, too operatic.

Noddy Holder? Nah, too Lennon-as-foghorn.

Roger Daltrey? Be serious now.

The only one who comes even close, I think, is Johnny Rotten.

But when it comes to the combo of power and sweetness, Brian's the man.

He's helped immeasurably of course by the material, that astounding run of singles from "Little Willy" to "Action"--the writing, arrangement, production (which amazingly all get even better when they leave Chinn & Chapman and do it all themselves)... takes my breath away it does. Raw power with a high gloss. The drums the drums the drums the drums.

Also nice is the complementary relationship between Connolly's blowdried blast and the arch histrionics of Steve Priest ("we just haven't got a clue, WHAT to do" etc)

It's been Sweet week here at Blissblog Towers--Tasmin is besotted with the group she calls Gram Bam. It all started with "Little Willy", on account of one of her pre-school teachers being called Willy, but has since spread to "Wigwam Bam" (aka "Gram Bam Bam")and "Blockbuster" and "Ballroom Blitz". Strangely the greatest-hits I have omits "Hellraiser", one of their biggest hits, and featuring the lines "she's a natural born raver/yeah yeah yeah YEAH."