Metal Hammer Review

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After numerous false starts, The Wildhearts début LP is finally here. Basically, it’s a bunch of demos that sounded worse after being tarted up in the studio, so they’ve been released in their original form, thus making Nirvana‘s shandy drinking production on ‘In Utero‘ sound like Andrew Lloyd Webber on big drugs! That means ‘authentic’ mis-haps are all over this record, including such jems as out of tune singing, messy drums and over-powering guitars! But my Lord if it isn’t the most invigorating record I’ve heard all year! ‘What the fuck? It’s my life, I can’t lose!’ barks mad Ginger in the autobiographical ‘Drinking About Life‘. My thoughts exactly chap! Big guitars and shouting aren’t new to rock ‘n’ roll, but when they’re played with such gut-wrenching intensity that you can’t really go wrong.

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Cover Art

This is an extract from Classic Rock‘s ‘Sleevenotes‘ column. Scans uploaded to ‘All Things WildheartsFacebook group by Des Tröyer.

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What was Wildhearts mainman Ginger doing in a London studio back in the early months of 1993 gently lowering himself into a bath full of jet-black-looking oil. and allowing his eyes to be gaffa taped over and a live scorpion and a giant centipede to roam all over his face? Well he was modelling for the sleeve photo of his band’s debut album, ‘Earth vs The Wildhearts‘.

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KKKKK Review

This excellent 5K’s out of 5 review is taken from an old issue of Kerrang! on the initial release of  ‘Earth vs‘. Incidentally, the reviewer here, Jason Arnopp, is now a Doctor Who scriptwriter among other things.

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‘I’m living on a landmine/The kind that never ignites…’TV Tan.

This one just did. The Wildhearts have sat on the bastard for at least seven months since leaving the studio, and now it’s finally erupting. The Rock establishment must prepare to die.

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In the Studio: KK on Mick Ronson

The mysterious KK listed as an engineer in the ‘Earth vs’ credits is brother of Pandora Peroxide artist and Ginger‘s former flatmate, Ray Zell, Kevin Mathews who now plays bass in the band of  the sister of the late great Mick Ronson, Maggi Ronson. This extract, written by KK is taken from Maggi’s website. I first met Mick around 1990 at Wessex Studios, London; he was working on an album for Swedish duo EC2, which Mick had produced and played various instruments on. While mixing and overdubbing the album with him, Mick told me he was going to record a new solo album soon and asked me if I’d like to engineer it! Mick was a great guy, but I still took it with a pinch of salt, as, all through my band and engineering days, people would come up with offers like that, which, invariably came to nothing.

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Story Behind the Song: Caffeine Bomb

The following article is an extract from an old issue of Raw magazine, written by Howard Johnson. Thanks to Wayne McCrory for the scans.

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“I remember writing ‘Caffeine Bomb’ really clearly,” explains Ginger. “It was late ’93 and I’d woken up in the middle of the afternoon with the kind of hangover that makes you think death is preferable. My head was throbbing and I had to get rid of it by any means possible.”

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Shitsville, TD15

As mentioned elsewhere, I grew up in Berwick upon Tweed where for a teenager there is little of interest to keep you occupied. Bear in mind that this was the pre-internet age so there was very little to do, other than perhaps getting into mischief like chucking eggs off a bridge onto the street below. Not guilty, officer!

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Greetings…

I turned 33⅓ on January 1st 2014, it was a particularly slow day when I worked that one out, let me tell you. Anyway, it got me thinking about my favourite albums. I hope I’m not being too patronising to younger readers here by pointing that 33⅓ RPM (revolutions per minute) is traditionally the speed you set your turntables to play vinyl albums. Whenever my mind turns to this topic, one long player is always at the forefront of my thinking. Of course it’s ‘Earth vs The Wildhearts‘, the story arc of this piece would have taken an unexpected early twist if it had been anything other.

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