Widowmaker CD: "Straight Faced Fighters"

Sleeve and track listing

Esoteric Recordings ECLEC 22602. (4 stars!)

Disc 1

  1. Such A Shame1
  2. Pin A Rose On Me1
  3. On The Road1
  4. Straight Faced Fighter1
  5. Ain't Telling You Nothing1
  6. When I Met You1
  7. Leave The Kids Alone1
  8. Shine A Light On Me1
  9. Running Free1
  10. Got A Dream1

Disc 2

  1. Come On Up2
  2. Such A Shame2
  3. Too Late2
  4. El Doomo2
  5. Ain't Telling You Nothing2
  6. When I Met You2
  7. Too Late To Cry3
  8. The Hustler3
  9. Here Comes The Queen3
  10. Something I Can Do Without3
  11. Sign The Papers3
  12. Pushing And Pulling3

1 from the album "Widowmaker"

2 BBC live in concert 1976

3 from the album "Too Late To Cry"

Review

(This is the UK band 'Widowmaker' from the mid-70's. Not to be confused with Dee Snider's solo band.)

Now this is more like it. Widowmaker should have been big, really big... but a hard rock band in the face of the "year zero" ethos of punk meant they didn't really break through. They got a better reaction in the USA (and got on bigger tours, too) but distributions problems with (manager) Don Arden's label Jet meant their first album didn't really sell that well. A shame because it really is quite good.

All tracks are good, but the ones that stick in my mind are ballads like Leave The Kids Alone and rockers like On The Road. All of their eponymous debut are included here, together with their 1976 BBC 'In Concert' performance, showing just how good they were live. After lengthy tours of the USA vocalist Steve Ellis jumped ship, having not really enjoyed long spells away from home. Their second album was weaker as a result, some of whose tracks appear here as well. At the time I felt this was a mistake, but with those tracks now appearing on Running Free I realise I wasn't missing much.

Of the various Widowmaker albums that have been made available in recent years, this is the one to get, including as it does their tasty first album and the complete 'In Concert' show.

Related links

The following links are relevant: www.steveellis.co.uk and www.huwlloyd-langton.co.uk.

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Copyright © 2003-2018 Adrian Perkins