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Nasty Pop - 1975 Nasty Pop

ARTIST: Nasty Pop
ALBUM: Nasty Pop
LABEL: Island
YEAR: 1975


LINEUP: Jon Fitzpatrick - piano, vocals * Steve Grace - guitars, vocals * John Heath - drums * Keith Wilkinson - bass * Tony Wimhurst - lead guitar, vocals * Dick Cuthell - flugelhorn * Gordon Smith - bottleneck guitar

TRACK LISTING: 01 Stages And Plays * 02 Play It Loud/I Don't Know * 03 Pretty Author * 04 The Ballad Of Doodie Handstand * 05 Ticking Fast * 06 The Invisible Kid * 07 Lady Sings * 08 Airs And Graces * 09 Crow * 10 One Of These Days * 11 Country Lover

I have precious little information on these Liverpool art college students outside of the two albums they recorded, but I do know Nasty Pop were very close to Liverpool's other big band at the time: Deaf School, and each band even went so far as to reference the other on their respective debut album. If you look close at the LP, you can see a Deaf School album on the table next to the bed of red horny rabbits. That's right, rabbits and your guess is as good as mine as to what substance was in use when the concept for the art was decided upon. What other connections the bands shared is a mystery, but it should be noted Nasty Pop bassist Keith Wilkinson went on to play in pop favourites Squeeze for several years.

The Songs
Island Records promoted the band as the next 10cc and yeah; it didn't work for City Boy either. Nasty Pop was certainly not up to the same notch on the originality bar as 10cc, but I suppose the label had to grab on to something. In my opinion, Nasty Pop had more in common with pub rockers Ace, American rust belt progressives Crack The Sky and the early Randy Newman albums. Keep in mind; this was a year before punk tainted a lot of good rock bands that just wanted to play good songs and not get spit on, so you won't find anything too aggressive here. The combination of pub and art rock mixes nicely on cuts like 'Stage And Plays' and 'Pretty Author' although not as well as the albums single 'Crow' with it's downright silly chorus. Naturally, The Beatles creep into the music of Nasty Pop and this works especially well on 'One Of Those Days' which provides a little backwards guitar ala 'The White Album'.

In Summary
Overall a pleasant art rock album without pretensions, Nasty Pop replaced their drummer, signed to Polydor and released a second album 'Mistaken I.D.' before breaking up sometime in 1978. Neither album has been on CD although I am assuming that situation will change soon and with the Squeeze connection, it's inevitable.

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#1 | Eric on October 25 2011 12:23:02
Been in contact with drummer John Heath in recent days. The band toured Europe with Caravan and the UK with John Cale. Heath left before the band's second and last album 1977's 'Mistaken I.D.'

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