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Update June 2018

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Mott the Dog

Saturday, June 16, 2018 - June 22, 2018

AC/DC: ‘Razors Edge’


By the beginning of the Eighties AC/DC were probably the biggest rock band in the world, or as they preferred to be called, “A little rock & roll band, nothing more, nothing less.”

Sadly, nothing is certain in life and things easily change. The decade proved not to be a good one for AC/DC and four sub-standard albums that had been panned by critics saw the record buying public all but desert them. They were still a massive attraction on the live market but there the crowds wanted the old hits, not the more recent tracks from the latest albums.

Angus Young.

As the Nineties dawned however it was time for a new album release, and a change in the lineup also as drummer Steve Wright left for Dio, his place being filled by Chris Slade. There were several other notable changes too. Mike Fraser was brought in as the sound engineer and Chris Fairbairn as producer, the latter having previously worked with both Aerosmith and Bon Jovi.

The band recorded this album in Ireland and Canada but lead singer Brian Johnson, who had seemed a little off his game since “For Those About To Rock” in 1981, was not available for the first few months of recording as he was dealing with a messy divorce. So the decision was taken to write the songs without him and Malcolm and Angus Young wrote the lyrics, something that Johnson later revealed he was relieved about. The Young brothers in the future carried on writing all the songs, allowing Johnson to concentrate on his singing.

Brian Johnson.

The results in the songwriting change were unquestionably for the better. It got AC/DC, if not quite back firing on all six cylinders, at least up and running again. Brian Johnson seemed to have benefited the most, with his voice having the charisma of old again. The guitar play of the Young brothers was back to its best and the new rhythm section worked perfectly.

There are some classic songs on “Razors Edge” which became firm favorites with the live crowds, allowing AC/DC to spice up their live set. Album opener (and also concert opener for more than a decade) is the AC/DC classic “Thunderstruck” and is still included in the band’s set today. With it’s opening Angus Young guitar riff, the crowd chanting and Johnson telling the audience they had been “Thunderstruck” while leering at them, it was a sure fire hit.

The opening track on the album is followed by a trio of storming rockers right out of the AC/DC cannon; “Fire Your Guns”, “Money Talks” (which was released with a fabulous video that had heavy rotation on MTV), and the title cut “Razors Edge”. From here on however it sadly all rather fades away. Quite simply two of the songs, “Mistress For Christmas” and “Shot Of Love” are plain awful, whilst the others all sound a bit like a version of AC/DC just going through the motions.

But never mind, the album did its trick and went to number two in the American Billboard Charts and sold 5 million copies in America alone, whilst in the UK it went to number four. AC/DC were definitely back. Why they missed out the apostrophe in the title however is unfathomable and has not been put right to this day. Three and a half stars out of five.


Brian Johnson - vocals

Angus Young – lead guitar

Malcolm Young - guitar

Cliff Williams - bass guitar

Chris Slade - drums

Track List:


Fire Your Guns

Money Talks

Razors Edge

Mistress For Christmas

Rock Your Heart Out

Are You Ready

Got You

Shot Of Love

Let’s Make It

Goodbye and Good Riddance

If You Dare

Note: Written by Mott The Dog from Jameson’s, The Irish Pub, Soi AR, North Pattaya.

June 9, 2018 - June 15, 2018

Peter Banks: ‘Instinct’

This superb, but alarmingly underrated guitarist had a really fine pedigree. First coming to notice in the mid sixties in a wonderful flower-power band call Syn, with a certain Chris Squires on bass, they were then joined by vocalist Jon Anderson and became the marvelously monikered Mabel Greer’s Toy Shop. Finding this a bit of a mouthful, and with the addition of Tony Kaye on keyboards and Bill Bruford on drums, they transformed once more and found instant international acclaim as Yes.

Peter Banks. (Photo/Wikepedia)

Two wonderful albums followed, “Yes” and “Time and a Word” but at this point Peter Banks was booted out due to his ambitions of entertaining an audience rather than trying to educate them. It was after a performance at the Marquee that Mott became a fan, always wanting to have fun and being up to having entertainment thrust in his general direction. Watch “Dear Father” from 1970 on You Tube to get the full might of early Yes. Even to this day, Yes guitarist Steve Howe, and Trevor Rabin have made a career out of copying Bank’s trademark guitar licks.

Peter Banks went on to form Flash, who released 3 respectable albums (once described as “Yes music played by Thunder and Lightning”), before being swamped by bad management and punk rock. After spending the Eighties mainly in session work and looking for suitable musicians to work with, Banks went solo in the Nineties with this enchanting album “Instinct”.

From the first rippling guitar chords of opening cut “No Place Like Home” to the final bell “Never The Same”, which closes the album, your ears are held in thrall by this maestro of the six-string. Although an instrumental album it always holds your attention by its diversity and humour, but you will have to listen to the music to get that. Satriani, Vai, and co would give their eye teeth to put out such a fine collection of fretwork and tunes.

The two central passages include track 4, “Sticky Wickets”, played on a midi guitar synthesizer, which starts out funky and then turns itself inside out to reach a shattering climax. Then, before you have time to push the repeat button Banks is off again with track 5 (“Short Comings”), totally excessive and not at all jazzy, with a relentless four in the bar.  It’s like the night of a thousand guitars with Peter Banks the fastest guitar slinger in town.

The final track is “Never The Same”, a moving tribute to Banks’s late mother. Never has such a beautiful piece of music been played on the electric guitar.

If you hear this music like me I’m sure you will be mystified why Peter Banks did not become an international star.

The album cover and the inside sleeve notes are worth the price of the CD alone, so you cannot lose. Dogs have superb instinct so trust this dog’s instinct and add this to your collection, you won’t regret it - 5 stars.

Other CD’s by Peter Banks include: “Self Contained”, “Reduction”, “Two Sides of Peter Banks”, and “Can I Play You Something”.

Tracks List:

No Place Like Home

All Points South


Sticky Wicket

Short Comings

Code Blue


Animal Mundi

Swamp Report

Instinctive Behavior

Dominating Factor

Never The Same

Note: Written by Mott The Dog of Jameson’s, The Irish Pub, Soi AR, North Pattaya.

June 2, 2018 - June 8, 2018

David Bowie: ‘The Rise & Fall Of Ziggy Stardust’

When this album was released in 1972, it was nearly the cause for this Dog to dye his hair fluorescent orange and effect blue eye shadow.  Fortunately a stout collar and lead were put in place before this manifestation took place.  But nonetheless, this album had a profound effect on the history of rock ‘n’ roll. 

In soccer parlance, this album took David Bowie from a relegation candidate in Division Three to a Premier League champion in the blink of a mascara adorned eye.  When Bowie created Ziggy Stardust, he created a monster that would take him on one of the most exciting roller-coaster rides in the history of the entertainment industry.

David Bowie as Ziggy Stardust (right) and Trevor Bolder.

The songs that Bowie wrote for this album were his strongest so far.  Also, by taking the heavy rock from the previous year’s “Man Who Sold The World” and the power pop of “Hunky Dory”, which was only six months old, he created the perfect concept album.  Bowie then had the musical nuance to pick the perfect musicians to make his dreams of stardom come true.

With the band standing satin-trousered beside Bowie, Mick Ronson tore every ounce of emotion from his guitars and pushed Bowie’s songs into another dimension.  Listen to the gut wrenching savagery of “Moonage Daydream” (the guitar solo at the end of which has often been imitated but never bettered), the glittering riffs in the title track, and the sheer unadulterated, irresistible boogie of “Suffragette City”.  This makes you realize that Bowie could never have done this without the platinum haired Spider from Hull, Mick Ronson.

The lyrics are thrust in your face and rammed down your throat.  Then there are Bowie’s excursions into the future, such as the image heavy “Star Man” - He’d like to come and meet us but he thinks he’d blow our minds.  This is followed by the album’s final number, “Rock ‘n’ Roll Suicide”, which also closed the live set, with the vocalist entreating the audience to ‘hold’ him before he’s taken away.

Nevertheless, Bowie would soon tire of the Ziggy persona (splitting up the Spiders at the peak of their powers).  This dramatic music with its swaggering saxophones, rough edged guitars, tinkling piano, bombastic drumming and its crisp production cut a swathe through the music industry.  It created its own category of glam rock and also changed fashion forever.

The concerts were amazing but you had to have the music and this album was full of cutting-edge songs that hold up decades later.

Climb into your platform boots, shake out your spandex and, as the Leper Messiah preached, “Let your imagination soar”.

5 stars for the Starman.


David Bowie - vocals, and acoustic guitars

Mick Ronson - guitar and production

Trevor Bolder - bass guitar (and the most spectacular sideburns ever seen)

Woody Woodmansy - drums

Tracks List:

Five Years

Soul Love

Moonage Daydream


It Ain’t Easy

Lady Stardust


Hang Onto Yourself

Ziggy Stardust

Suffragette City

Rock ‘N’ Roll Suicide

Note: Written By Mott The Dog and Hells Bells who can be found in another time warp at Jameson’s The Irish Pub, Soi AR, North Pattaya.

HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

AC/DC: ‘Razors Edge’

Peter Banks: ‘Instinct’

David Bowie: ‘The Rise & Fall Of Ziggy Stardust’



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