Thursday, 13 May 2010

Teddy Boy Rock ‘n’ Roll – Crazy Cavan Tribute

Teddy Boy Rock ‘n’ Roll – A Tribute To Crazy Cavan and the Rhythm Rockers
Rollin Records RRCD010

Boz Boorer provides an insight into how inspirational Crazy Cavan and the Rhythm Rockers were in the UK during the 70’s and how he and his mates all “wanted to be Lyndon Needs so all of us jumped around like epileptic hillbillies”. He also talks about how drummer Mike Coffey’s brother, Breathless Dan was revolutionary in going Stateside to discover unheard singles and bring them back to Europe.Boz adds, “As a result of his travels he supplied Cavan with a lot of 45’s that people had never heard in England (Wales!!). This stood them head and shoulders above any competition at the time and added to their unique sound. So I think a tribute album to them is long overdue”. I totally agree, and although there’s been the odd song (Teencats – Hey Mr Grogan) and a recent album from Mr Breathless, this is the first major venture. Just a quick glance of the song-writing credits shows how dersereving this tribute is. They’re all household favourites across the rockabilly world and fourteen of them were written by Crazy Cavan Grogan or Lyndon Needs.

Eleven of the fifteen tracks were cut over two Sundays in Hollywood in early 2008, with four bonus cuts from this side of the pond. The first session from 6th January 2008 mainly features Boz Boorer, Dean Micetich (Kid Rocker), Solomon Snyder and Joe Perez, with a couple of guest spots fro Big Sandy, Tim Polecat and Ashley Kingman.

The CD bursts out of the speakers from the get-go with both Boorer’s Teddy Boy Rock ‘n’ Roll and Big Sandy’s Wildcast Cats In Town being brilliant Cavan tributes, full of the energy and power that made Cav and the Rockers the legends they are. Big Sandy actually sounds like Cavan at the beginning. The band are great on the five tracks featured with Boorer and Micetich sharing some rip-snorting solos. Boorer’s other number Teddy Boy Boogie is equally wild, I would love to have heard his cohort Morrissey get involved. He’s a bit of a rockabilly, I could just imagine him doing a dark version of Put A Light In The Window. Micetich is the Kid Rocker on Bop Pretty Baby and he hiccupos and growls for all he’s worth, great stuff. Tim Polecat gives flick of the middle finger to all the Teds who booed the Polecats at Jerry Lee gigs with a stompin’ take of She’s The One To Blame.

The second session from the end of February BB and Micetich joined by a mixture of session men including Stray Cat Slim Jim Phantom, Danny Harvey and James Intveld. Boorer is again superb with the Hard Rock Café anthem. I love James Intveld and think some of his songs like Perfect World and Samantha are stupendously good, but I don’t he’s really a Crazy Cavan kinda guy. Don’t get me rong, I’m chuffed he’s a fan of Cavan and wanted to be involved in the project, I’m just don’t think his voice suits it. Then again, Crazy Rhythm might have been a great name for a Cavan album, but it isn’t exactly their best song – perhaps if Intveld had of covered one of the ballads like Dolores it might have been better suited to his controlled vocals.

Levi Dexter returns to form without My Little Sister’s Gotta Motorbike and even gives us the bike noises that Cav revels in doing. It's nice to hear this song with a double bass (played by Intveld) so prominent, and makes you wonder what CC&RR would sound like with more of this than an electric bass.

The best of the five bonus tracks is Johnny Fox and the Hunter’s My Bonnie. Then again that oldie belongs to Teds everywhere, not just Cavan. The Batmobiles deserve a mention for their spirited neo-rockabilly blast through Frankie’s Got A Quiff.

Boz Boorer and Kid Rocker deserve a slap on the back for producing a magnificent album. This isn’t just the fitting album that Cav and the boys deserve, this is a truly wonderful album in its own right. And what about the photos on the front and back covers.


Paul D said...

great review! canb't wait for their new double CD

Rockabillyville said...

I know, the unreleased stuff should be great.