Stu's weekly and wondrous vinyl memories spot, this week...let's blether about the remarkable year 1979, in other words, a long time ago in a street not so far, far away from where the Dacha stands today I bought an album entitled Unleashed In The East by those noisy types Judas Priest. It was a wet afternoon in October and I can remember it was a school lunchtime and the last pocket money went all on this slab of precious vinyl. I was lucky to pick up a copy with the bonus 7" EP inside featuring probably my all time favourite Priest track live, no my favourite song above anything the glorious Beyond The Realms Of Death. In fact, I'm playing it right now...
I blame the late great Tommy Vance (yet again) of course because the preceding Friday night his show had opened with the stupendously delicious Unleashed start track Exciter. You see Pop Pickers back in those days on ye olde BBC Radio 1 at 10pm on a Friday night - Medium Wave or if you were in a catchment area in its later guise, VHF...none of your namby pamby shite AM/FM/DAB in those days no sir it was a time when radios were still called wirelesses by people and you could trust the BBC (well sort of). Anyway I digress but basically the BBC Radio news would hit the top of the hour and about 3mins past 10 the show would kick off with no intro just a intro track following which the Sir (should've been) Vance would describe the foregoing song and lay out a summary of what was to unfold over the coming 2 hours. You see Tommy Vance and his Friday Night Rock Show was the catalyst for many a pocket money spend, I would go without the jam rolly poly of school dinners to buy a LP often on the mere taster which a Friday night had provided.
Unleashed In The East is chock full of goodies, a wealth of superlative live versions of the likes of the grinding relevations of Sinner, the epic Genocide, the addictive Green Manalishi (with the two pronged crown) and everyone's party favourite Ripper. And then there was Victim of Changes...
...Victim of Changes is the album's pièce de résistance, words here would not do the bitter sweet rollercoaster of a track justice. It was a few weeks later that The Friday Rock Show would kick off after the 10pm news bulletin blasting out the very same after which TV on the Radio read out that the track was played as a special request for yes, indeed why your friend and humble narrator of course!
I still love this album, and have it blasting out the hi-fi at this very moment...the great interpretation of Fleetwood Mac's Green Manalishi...
and the night is so black/that the darkness cooks
From start to finish the shrieking double axe battering on Unleashed let's you lose your mind in a Metal Paradise from which you would never care to escape. Leave me alone amidst the satisfying earache!
And of course it all live in Japan, the only place where a live album should be recorded in my view
Who cares if it was allegedly 'touched up' in the studio, it was the seventies for goodnesssake...!
Who cares if it really bucked the trend of live albums back then and should've been a double album to include the bonkers Better by You, Better Than Me and Beyond The Realms on the main album!
Who cares the album cover features something akin to what the Village People might have looked like advertising dental floss or strides...I repeat it was the feckin' seventies
This is one of the five live albums that saved my life!