Saturday, July 20, 2013

Status Quo - Piledriver

Let’s see… what do I know about Status Quo?  Well, I don’t think any self-respecting lover of good sixties music could not remember “Pictures of Matchstick Men”.  What a great tune!  However, it never made me want to investigate their other musical odysseys.

This album, Piledriver, was released in 1972, about four years after “Matchstick Men”.  This being the only album I’ve fully heard from Status Quo, I would have to say that they probably fit well in the early 70’s, bluesy, Zeppelin world that was popular at the time.  

Honestly, when I first put the needle in the groove and heard the first tune on this record, I was not impressed.  I am not a fan of early 70’s blues-rock, unless it has something different to say, or maybe a hook or two. That’s just my taste.  However, I was pleased to discover that it does get a bit better here and there. 

Track Listing:

Side One:

Don’t Waste My Time

O Baby

A Year

Unspoken Words 

Side Two:

Big Fat Mama

Paper Plane

All the Reasons

Roadhouse Blues

“O Baby” isn’t too terrible on the ears, and “A Year” is a bit (again, sorry for using this as a descriptor) soft-Zeppelin-esque. 

I could probably live without ever hearing “Big Fat Mama” again.  To me, it’s an example of generic blues-rock that takes over five minutes to say…practically nothing.

“Paper Plane” sounds to me like it was either a single, or had single potential.  It sounds like something you’d hear on a top 40 station in the early 70’s.

“All the Reasons” is a fairly nice tune with some good guitar.

And “Roadhouse Blues”…yep, it’s a cover of the Doors song.  I don’t mind the original, but this is just another oft-covered bar-band tune that really doesn’t impress much.  Granted, Status Quo is more talented than your average bar band, but maybe they should have just finished the album with more of their original work.

I don’t really feel that I’m all that qualified to judge blues-rock, as you already know that I’m not a big fan, but this album doesn’t seem too bad.  If you like this type of rock, you may want to check it out.  The songs do tend to go on longer than I personally like, and the vocals are not remarkable, but again, that’s just my opinion.

 Overall, it’s not something I’d visit again, but I’m glad I gave it a chance.

Let’s see what John has to say….

Where did you buy this record and when?

“I think I got this at Tommy’s store in Cranford.  When, I don’t really remember. Had to be maybe in the early 2000’s.”

Do you own it in any other format?


What is your over-all impression of this album?

“I bought it for “Paper Plane”, which is an awesome song.  But, I don’t remember much about it.  It didn’t leave much of an impression on me.  This is what they were known for after their psychedelic era.  It’s not bad.  It’s just not my thing.  Interesting cover of ‘Roadhouse Blues’.”

Favorite Track?

“Paper Plane”

 How many stars out of five?

“I’d give it 3 and a half or four.  Just for ‘Paper Plane’ alone.”

 And for my next blog,  the first person to comment with a number from 1 to 16, and another number from 1 to 75, that will be my next randomly selected record from John's vault. :-)