Album Reviews

Hard Stuff – Bulletproof (Reissue) Review

Released By : Angel Air Records

Genre : Classic Rock

Link : http://www.angelair.co.uk/sjpcd371.htm

 

Line Up:

John Du Cann (Guitars, Vocals)

John Gustafson (Bass Guitar)

Paul Hammond (Drums)

 

Tracklist:

1. Jay Time

2. Sinister Minister

3. No Witch At All

4. Taken Alive

5. Time Gambler

6. Millionaire

7. Monster In Paradise

8. Hobo

9. Mr Longevity-RIP

10. The Provider-Part One

11. Jay Time (single version) (bonus track)

12. The Orchestrator (bonus track)

 

Born at the beginning of the seventies and made up of the remnants of ATOMIC ROOSTER came one of the most under-rated proto-metal bands of the era, HARD STUFF. This month Angel Air Records will re-issue the band’s two albums, both to feature remastered sound and bonus tracks. Both of these albums have had several re-issues in the past, so fans of the band may be a little tired of re-buying the same thing time and again, but for those fan that have yet to pick up either of these discs, or for fans of the era that haven’t given this band a go yet there’s never been a better time jump on board….

The first one we’ll look at the band’s debut album BULLETPROOF which was originally released in 1972 to critical acclaim. Being first released on DEEP PURPLE’S own record label Purple Records, and spending a lot of time as Purple’s main support act gave them plenty of chance to get noticed, and that they did. The HARD STUFF sound is pretty atypical of the era, with a mixture of Hard Rock and Progressive Rock and while they would never be really classed as a Metal act, this music is about as close you can get to it without crossing over, so Proto-Metal seems to be the buzzword of choice. I may be on my own here but I also hear a bit of seventies Glam Rock here too and there is more than one occasion where the album reminded me a lot of SLADE.

The album has been given the Angel Air sheen too, with a great punchy sound that is crisp and clear but still has a fair bit of balls, the booklet is informative and features a couple of rare photographs and also a scan from an original review of the album. Its bonus tracks though that usually get fans excited about re-issues and while the two here may not get people jumping over the moon it’s till nice to have them. The first bonus track is the single version of JAY TIME, not much different from the original, just twelve or so seconds shorter. THE ORCHESTRATOR is actually the B-Side of the previous single and as far as I know this is the first time the track has been available on CD.

This release may not be quite as exciting as a lot of other re-issues due to the fact that BULLETPROOF has been redone several times in the past, but the remastered sound and the first-time inclusion of a B-Side should be enough to get fans of the band to consider this the ultimate version. If you aren’t familiar with HARD STUFF, be sure that if you enjoy the trademark early-seventies Hard Rock sound you will love this album.

 

Written By ZeeZee

Rating : 8/10

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