Some amazing bits in in time for Christmas – from The Beatles to Happy Hardcore!! Top Ten from Bill Steer!!!!

Good morning from all at Reckless!

This Blog was written to the sounds of:

Insanely busy week this week, up there with the busiest of the year. Lets get started telling you about what has come in this week;

1. Beatles, Beatles, Beatles. Loads more BEATLES! Some super nice bits, including a demo Paperback Writer which is incredibly cool. Also a huge stack of Beatles and related Japanese CDs, rare promos, interview discs and a colour vinyl All Things Must Pass. I’ve noticed we’ve had a lot of people in this week rocking the George Harrison 70s look and I have to say, they look very dope.

2. From one youth movement to another; one huge stack of properly wicked Happy Hardcore 12”s!!! Although I know I am in the minority I do love it; I’m sure if you are a fairly regular customer you would have heard me blasting me out in the shop. Anyway – pretty clean in general; and about 500 12”s. Couple of big ones including Bananaman, Love Of My Life and that 2000 12”. But also all the Fusion 12”s, plenty of Force & Styles (hell yes; loads of the tracks played on their incredible Essential mix are here), DJ Slam, Hixxy, Seduction, SMD, Sharkey, Scooter, Ramos & Supreme (loads from that crowd), Scott Brown. Loads of really great records in all their garish glory. Few Trancecore bits and a couple of Gabber bits too. Also in the same collection was more “classic” Dance music from Aphex Twin, The Chemical Brothers, Faithless, Leftfield and quite a few bit Trance and House hits.

3. Another small but wicked collection came in that was the same era bit different side of the school playground; Pop Will Eat Itself, Dog Eat Dog (the classic All Boro Kings!), Metallica, Neds Atomic Dustbin, Janes Addiction, Nirvana, Halloween, Slayer, Nine Inch Nails, Bjork etc.

4. Tom purchased a massive CD collection – thousands of Classic Rock back catalogue. Lots of really cheap but brilliant albums, what more could you want! There were some nice Box Sets in this collection too. Zooming in on the picture I can see cds from Charles Mingus, John Mayall, Nick Lowe, John Martyn, Pulp, Elvis, Mountainn, The Beatles, Public Service Broadcasting, The Clash, Miles Davis, Iron Butterfly, Neil Young, Kate Bush, Al Stewart, Stevie Wonder, Judee Sill, Paul Simon etc.

5. More Drum & Bass and Jungle. Right now we have enough that if you started listening to this at the start of 1992 you wouldn’t be done till it was 95. More Dillinja, Source Direct, Ed Rush, Ram Trilogy.

6. Fairly large Soul and Reggae collection came in today. Several hundred records, plus a load of bargain bin business.Lots of nice Dub, Rare Groove, Lovers Rock bits. Lovers was probably the largest piece of the cake but its back in at the moment so we’re ok with that. Some nice JA originals as well as classics like Tempo by Antony Red Rose.

7. More Reggae; mostly average but a few bigger 45s like Sensi Addict (nice to have a few copies of this classic come through recently). Some rarer LPs from the likes of Antony Johnson, Barry Brown and Lone Ranger.

8. A copy of huge George Michael rarity “Older” on vinyl. As soon as I put this on the gram people went mad and its gone now. Really hard to get an original copy of this on vinyl.

9. I bought an absolutely huge collection on one of our biggest Saturdays in months. It was about 500 LPs and 12”s. Lots of US issues, and loads of promos. There are some really cool records here; from super cool looking lane ranger Country bits to Lovers Rock to JA original Big Youth LPs to sealed Rolling Stones LPs! Some nice Soul and Jazz bits tucked away too including some James Brown US originals in the shrink. Lots of really obscure but interesting records here. The bulk is cool under the radar US Singer Songwriter LPs with amazing sleeves.

10. Last but not least a top notch indie collection. From the amazing Slowdive, My Bloody Valentine, The Smiths, Oasis, The Verve, Sebedoh, Dinosaur JR, Ride, Galaxie 500, The Pixies, The Stone Roses to the Throwing Muses. All original copies.

Annnnd relax. Plenty of this stuff has gone out already but some – as ever – will take a little bit longer to go out so please bear with us. As well as a lot of the above this week we have put out:

A) Tonnes more Hardcore, Jungle, Drum n Bass, UK Garage. The sections are bulging with some of the best stock we have ever had in these genres for years. Mostly super clean too.

B) Now Toru is back from Japan the Jazz has been completely expanded – and they are flying out!

C) Classic Rock and Indie – although these are selling incredibly quickly.

D) Rock and Pop CD’s – come and grab a bargain!

E) Indie Pop on 45.

F) House, Electro and Techno 12″s – lots of very clean US originals.

Thanks to everyone that Popped into the shop this week – we know some of you have had to wait a little longer at the counter due to the queues and we appreciate you hanging on!

Please don’t forget we have Christmas Gift Vouchers available!

This week we have a Top Ten from none other than the almighty Bill Steer!!!

You’ll know Bill from Carcass, Napalm Death, Firebird, Gentlemans Pistols, Dissattack and Angel Witch of course!! I remember getting a Carcass LP from a record fair in Canterbury in the mid 90’s and it didn’t leave the deck for months. I finally got to see them at their reunion gig at the Underworld and they destroyed the place – it was amazing! So I’m really chuffed to have Bill do us a Top Ten – thanks again Bill!

Top Ten “power trio” albums of the early 1970s

West, Bruce & Laing “Why Dontcha” (CBS, 1972)
One part Cream, two parts Mountain, this heavyweight supergroup released a couple of studio albums and one live record. All of these are great, but the debut is hard to beat. From the gritty hard rock of the title track to Jack Bruce’s spectacular vocal on “Third Degree”, the whole thing is delivered in a spontaneous manner that has been rarely heard since.

Groundhogs “Hogwash” (United Artists, 1972)
The work of Tony McPhee and the Groundhogs has always been hard to categorise. Some insist on filing them away in the blues rock pigeonhole, others think of them as progressive. There have even been admirers from the anarcho-punk corner, impressed by McPhee’s early disdain for animal abuse. Ultimately, the Groundhogs always refused to be part of anyone else’s thing.

James Gang “Thirds” (ABC, 1971)
Before Joe Walsh went on to fame and riches with a notable solo career and The Eagles, he was already a respected guitarist, songwriter and vocalist with the James Gang. Many folk consider their second LP, “Rides Again” to be the band’s peak, but surely this album would be the connoisseur’s choice. The lead break on “Midnight Man” counts among Walsh’s finest.

Beck, Bogert & Appice “BBA” (Epic, 1973)
Another union of acclaimed players. Like WBL, this outfit didn’t quite reach the heights expected of them – and there is an superior, unreleased second album doing the rounds as a bootleg – but even so, there is enough quality music here to justify your attention. Their rendition of “Superstition” is a masterclass in hard rock rudeness.

Grand Funk Railroad “E Pluribus Funk” (Capitol, 1971)
Michigan’s GFR emerged in the late sixties, releasing a string of iconic albums that showed little in the way of production values but huge amounts of energy, heart and soul. By 1972 they had added a keyboard player, Craig Frost, and went on to develop a slicker sound that would yield some infectious hits. But the raw power contained on these early records was never to be re-captured.

Trapeze “You Are The Music” (Threshold, 1972)
Interesting how Trapeze remain somewhat overlooked, even now. Within a year of this recording Glenn Hughes would become a member of Deep Purple Mk III, and his voice remains a thrilling instrument to this day. On “Music”, the three modest Midlanders show their class with a versatile collection of songs.

Stray Dog “Stray Dog” (Manticore, 1973)
Snuffy Walden was one of the finest guitarists of his time, yet somehow this remarkable album slipped between the cracks. Perhaps the ELP connection – Greg Lake signed the band – misled some people, creating expectations of decadent symphonic rock rather than the blues-drenched heavy swagger contained in these grooves. All the same, Stray Dog’s debut remains a classic of its kind.

ZZ Top “Rio Grande Mud” (London, 1972)
Speaking of stellar guitar pickers, ZZ Top’s second release was – and still is – a strong showcase for the talents of Billy Gibbons. He even wields a competent harmonica for the Little Walter tribute, “Mushmouth Shoutin”, and “Chevrolet” was irresistible enough for the aforementioned Mr Walden to tackle a cranked-up cover just a few months later.

Budgie “Budgie” (MCA, 1971)
The majesty of Shelley and Bourge. Not an easy task to select just one album from Budgie’s rich catalogue, but their first certainly merits close attention. Even at such an early stage the band were unafraid to mix primal riffing alongside tender ballads, with inspired lyrics throughout.

Johnny Winter “Still Alive And Well” (Columbia, 1973)
OK, I realise that strictly this would be considered the work of a solo artist. But following the disintegration of the group known as “Johnny Winter And”, JW pared down his line-up to a trio and returned with arguably the strongest album of his career. Sonically it doesn’t get much more honest than this. There’s scarcely any overdubbing, it’s all about performances.