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Thursday, September 09, 2004


I have the feeling that I'm going to regret that top twenty-five list I did, and thusly here's another omission. In 1980, Australia's Rose Tattoo released their debut, 'Rock And Roll Outlaw'. This is another of those 'start to finish' records. This album rocks non-stop. If you took AC/DC, put them in jail for five years, then put them in the studio, this is what you would get. Angry Anderson, as well as having one of the all time great monikers, has one of the most powerful voices in Rock, and considering his staure, five foot is generous, he is certainly an unforgettable prescence. You can check him out in Mad Max - Beyond The Thunderdome as Tina Turner's Major Domo. But this is about the music, right? AC/DC's pre Mutt Lange production team of Vanda/Young (Albert Young, uncle to Angus and Malcom, and former Easybeats member) give the album the urgency found on the early AC/DC albums. The slide guitar of Pete Wells gives Rose Tattoo a flavour not often found in Hard Rock/Heavy Metal. The too solid to be human drums of Dallas 'Digger' Royal keeps the heart of Rose Tattoo thumping throughout this opus of working class angst. Lyrically, Anderson keeps to five main points; the Rose Tattoo philosophy if you will:

Bad girls love bad boys, but good girls love them too.
What you need is mates, staunch and true.
An outlaw life is noble because 'The Man' IS trying to keep you down.
The LAST thing prison does to a man is rehabilitate.
Nice boys don't play rock and roll ("I'm not a nice boy, and I never was")

Rose Tattoo went on to release two other notable albums before internal struggles began their decline into relative obscurity. Although they still tour and release product, their heyday ended with 1982's 'Scarred For Life'.

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