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Butler - 1981 Butler



ARTIST: Butler (Canada)
ALBUM: Butler
LABEL: Vertigo
SERIAL: 3307
YEAR: 1981

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Paul Butler - guitar, vocals * Peter Fredette - bass, lead vocals * Steve Hollingsworth - drums, percussion * John Findlay - keyboards * Derek O'Neil - guitar

TRACK LISTING: 01 Down And Out * 02 Without Me * 03 The Prisoner * 04 Media Man * 05 All Caught Up * 06 Now * 07 Just Say No * 08 Welcome In My World * 09 I'm Alive * 10 Into My Life * 11 I Can't Hide It * 12 Endgame


Background
Man, not much info on this hard rocking Canadian band I'm afraid. We do know guitarist Paul Butler spent a period in Maritime hopefuls Pepper Tree which included Brian Macleod (Chilliwack/ Headpins) at one point. Lead vocalist and bassist Peter Fredette would become Kim Mitchell's right hand man up to the present as well as work with Pat Travers, Gowan and Ian Thomas among others in the echelon of Canadian rock. Butler the band formed around 1976 and strangely enough included at one time British bassist Glyn Havard formerly of Jade Warrior. Signed to the same management team as Rush, Butler toured heavily throughout Canada on the club circuit and opening shows for Max Webster and naturally Rush before scoring their contract with Vertigo.


The Songs
Musically, Butler's only album for the most part is a pretty good example of classic Canadian rock in the tradition of Teaze and Moxy. Opening with the fiery 'Down and Out', Butler set the tone, rocking the listeners' world with no BS. A fine tune and the albums first single, released as a 12' inch for those who care. 'Without Me' follows the same fast paced direction with a few pompy bits thrown in for good measure and I can't help but love 'The Prisoner' with it's Beatles like chorus. Good stuff! The quirky but irresistible 'Just Say No' kicks off side two although I think the material from here after suffers just a little. The hooks aren't as memorable and there's a bit more new wave influence than need be. These guys were at their best when they rocked and should have left the skinny tie influence at home and out of the mix.


In Summary
I wonder how much push Vertigo gave Butler? I had never heard of the band until a few years ago and having spent a good part of 1983 in Canada, I don't ever recall coming across this record in the shops. I am happy to be a proud owner of the LP now of course, despite its minor flaws but I am curious what might have happened to Paul Butler?


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Comments
#1 | gdazegod on August 03 2008 09:12:03
Good to see this reviewed here at long last! Thumbs Up
#2 | rostoned on August 03 2008 12:44:51
Derek Oliver included this album in a list of 'classic AOR records to purchase' in a 1988 Kerrang 'Mega Metal' special dedicated to melodic rock. Odd choice. helpless
#3 | gdazegod on August 05 2008 09:40:35
Well Filippo, you might have to go and ask Derek exactly why he put this in his list. I recall this album from the HM Encyclopedia 1st Edition, of which Derek had a major hand in the publication thereof..
#4 | dangerzone on February 07 2010 18:18:03
I swear 'The Prisoner' is Split Enz in disguise.
#5 | super80boy on March 29 2014 17:56:51
I recently picked this up a 'Blind Buy' and was pleasantly surprised once the record started spinning. There's a lot of great energy in the songs. Most of these guys were already well on their way to being seasoned musicians. To the reviewers point, there is a bit of a letdown halfway through Side Two, but it's minor. Maybe in hindsight, they could have taken out 2-3 songs from the finished product. Standout tracks: 'The Prisoner' has cool pompous keyboard sounds and hooks, 'All Caught Up' with its doomy atmosphere, the Cheap Trickish power pop rock of 'Welcome In My World' and 'Into My Life'.
 
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