MYOFIST: Thunder in Rock LP PROMO 1981. Canadian Hard Rock Heavy Metal. Check audio + video review

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A&M Records Promo Album RARE.  incl.: Crazy on you, Hot Spikes, Rock and Roll Suicide, Thunder in Rock, Fleet Street, Open the Gates, If I’m not loved, Undercover Lover

 

Now it gets a bit complicated: this is “”Thunder in Rock””, full-length album number three from the Canadian rock band Myofist. Back home in Canada the disc was called “”Fleet Street”” and the band Fist. In the U.S.A  the disc was called the same as in Europe (“Thunder in Rock”), but the band name was Fist. Thus Canada = Fist and “”Fleet Street””, U.S. A + Europe = Fist and “”Thunder in Rock””. Are you with me so far?
OK. But when they then would release the disc in Europe, you discover that in England is already a fairly established band also named Fist. Damn it! So what do you do? Well, then it is not enough to change the name of the disc to “”Thunder in Rock””, to change even the name of the band to Myofist! But only in Europe. Therefore the disc is called both “”Thunder in Rock”” or “”Fleet Street”” depending on which country you buy it in. Complicated? Yes. Smart career move? No. Good album? YES!
For this is the closest you can get to a forgotten classic. The first thing that came in my head when I listen to Fist is probably a “”keyboard”” Blue oyster Cult with a hoarse Gene Simmons-copy of a song. And this is officially the only hard rock album I know that has a saxophone solo that can be heard. Hey, wait now, give Myofist a fair chance and a hefty listening time if you will, and then you will be completely blown away by this disc. So just listen to “”Double or Nothing””, it does not sound a bit like Mothers Finest about that fat bass? And what a fucking great riffs! Then roll it on for the title song “”Thunder in Rock”” with the famous saxophone solo that divided the hard rock fans into two camps when the record was released in 1981 and another elephant fat guitar riffs from bands boss Ron Chenier. Really good.
And how can forget the spoken intro on “”Fleet Street”” with Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson, who is in search of Sweeney Todd, the mad barber who butchered all his victims. The song is really good and has a party type of refrain. And the album is as you might imagine quite incredible, so buy it, you will not regret it.

 

Thunder in Rock
This album combines a sound that’s somewhere in-between classic Hard Rock and Heavy Metal, with coarse vocals. Not exactly a recipe for mainstream success but main song writer Ron Chenier had a weird talent for making heavy shit like this sound radio-friendly. Despite the heavy sound (by the standards of the time) and despite those vocals that you’d rather expect in a band like Motorhead the songs are actually deceivingly commercial in nature.

Now, what gives these songs their appeal? First of all, the sound is enhanced by 70’s sounding keyboards. They never dominate, but they certainly add to the wide appeal of the music. Then there’s the fact that all songs have well written vocal melodies and choruses that are often catchy as hell. Oddly enough, I feel the fact that they didn’t use a melodic Hair Metal singer (because with songs like this that could just as easily have been the case) is the finishing touch to make these songs stand out. Of course this feat could only be accomplished because the production is solid (with its smart use of higher pitched backing vocals whenever needed, among others). Given a lesser production, this symbiosis between music and vocals might not have existed at all.

There’s no use going over all the songs or to pick out stand out tracks. Everything’s at the same high level, as far as I’m concerned.Canadians of course don’t need an introduction to one of the best Hard Rock bands to have come from their country, but I’m certain there are still European classic Hard Rock fans out there that have never heard of them.

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An interesting outfit from Canada going under two monikers. Myofist in Europe and UK, and Fist in North America. Myofist’s sound was rather heavy handed on this album, much more so than the previous effort ‘Hot Spikes’ released the year before. Then they had a quirky sort of sound, not too dissimilar to Harlequin and Zon, especially those tracks which Jeff Nystrom sang on. Overall it’s very hefty melodic rock, punctuated by some at times brutal riffing, and some near gothic keyboard arrangements by Ivan Tessier. Yes, the keyboards play a major part on this album, with Tessier’s brief ivory tinklings being colorful and varied throughout. Ron Chenier’s sounds like Frank Marino’s long lost brother in the vocal department. His guitaring is choppy and more than competent, and has a certain resemblance to some of Steve Madden’s work (Reckless). ‘Double Or Nothin’, ‘Better Way To Go’ (sounding like a Honeymoon Suite) and ‘Evil Cold’ are all beefy rock, while ‘Leather And Lace’, ‘On The Radio’ and ‘It’s Late’ are more radio-oriented songs. By far the most interesting song is the graphic detail of ‘Fleet Street’, which is a comic story of an insane barber who in Victorian times killed people with his razor while shaving them. Listen to the Sherlock Homes/Dr Watson intro and Ron Chenier’s attempt to imitate the barber. The album closer is a rather spooky keyboard/synth workout called ‘Open The Gates’ until Mr Chenier’s guitar kicks in big time.”

MY O FIST: Thunder in Rock LP PROMO. Canadian Hard Rock Metal. Check whole album n videos

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Weight 0.25 kg

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