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Salient. Official Newspaper of Victoria University Students Association. Volume 40, Number 3. March 14, 1977.

Not so silly — Stupidity Dr Feelgood

Not so silly

Stupidity Dr Feelgood

There seems to be something odd about a record like this by a band like this. I mean, it's 1977, and here's a band that sounds like something you might have heard playing at a teddy-boy dance in London in 1962. Not that this is a bad thing, by any means — Dr Feelgood manages to convey at least some of the energy and power that their forebears employed to rip up seats and smash tables. But something doesn't click, and I think its the fact that the 3-chord 12-bars on this record are as near technically perfect as any live recording I've heard.

Strange aspect to criticize, you might say. But listen to guys like Howlin Wolf, Chuck Berry and Bill Haley playing their most powerful Stuff, and you'll hear a muffled bass/drums rhythm section, with a trebly, manic guitar and e cracking vocal giving the listener the (often accurate) impression that these guys were putting all they had into the music. Not just their time, but their energy and spirit. When they were belting out 12-bars 15-20 years ago, they were playing what was then an original, innovative kind of music that was a genuine product of the times. It's odd, you must admit, for Dr Feelgood to be playing the same music to an audience that wasn't even born when a lot of their material was written. Zoot suits, brylcream and teddy-boys just don't seem to suit 1977.

Anyhow, credibility and associated topics aside, this is a damn good rock'n'roll record, with 7 of the 13 tracks written by Wilko Johnson who also spices up the proceedings with some mighty meaty guitar work.

The rest of the vinyl is filled up with material from such old-timers [unclear: es] Rufus Thomas, Sonny Boy Williamson, and the (mandatory) Chuck Berry. Tracks like "All Through the City" and "She Does It Right" give a pretty fair picture of what Dr Feelgood is about — tight, well played rock'n'roll.

—Marty Wood

Record kindly supplied by Colin Morris Records Ltd, 54 The Terrace.