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Articles Home » 1992 Articles » Rattles, The - 1992 New Wonderland
Rattles, The - 1992 New Wonderland

ARTIST: Rattles, The
ALBUM: New Wonderland
LABEL: Titan Records
SERIAL: 2150-2
YEAR: 1992


LINEUP: Herbert Hildebrandt - lead vocals, bass * Dicky Tarrach - drums, percussion * Henner Hoier - lead vocals, guitars

Additional Musicians: Peter Weihe, Wesley B. Wright, Nils Tuxen - guitars * Wilkens - sax * Geoff Peacy - hammond b3 * J. Forster, Jeopard - keyboards * Eric IQ Gray - rap * R. Kohler, P. Walter, Mae MC. Kennar, Maggie Rider, Stevie Lange - background vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 New Wonderland * 02 Undercover Agent Of Rock 'N Roll * 03 No More Eagles * 04 Born To Be Free * 05 Go Your Own Way * 06 Girls In Uniform * 07 Like A River * 08 Stay Cool * 09 Night Of The Century * 10 I Drove All Night * 11 Sea Of Love * 12 Girl Get Back Your Fire * 13 White Shark In A Whirlpool

WEBLINKS: www.rattles.de

The Rattles go way, way back and even opened for The Beatles a few times although apart from their international hit 'The Witch'; the boys from Hamburg never had much of an impact outside cold war-era West Germany. The band released over thirty singles in their long career moving from beat and soul to a flirtatious fling with psychedelic and progressive rock in the late 60s although their 1970's output is a bit more mysterious and doesn't seem to be comped as extensively and with as much love as their earlier material. After a few years of silence, the late 1980s saw a rejuvenated Rattles recording and touring again although this time in a pop rock/AOR style and I'm not quite sure it suited them all that well.

The Songs
With only one original member in lead vocalist Herbert Hildebrandt, 'New Wonderland' has its moments including the up-tempo John Parr-ish title track but too often drifts into trendy self-importance that is painfully derivative. Case in point 'Undercover Agent of Rock 'N Roll' which as you can imagine from its cheesy title is not only embarrassing lyrically but directly rips ZZ Top's 'Sharp Dressed Man' in the chorus and that just isn't right in my book. Far less-tolerable, the disc takes an unnecessarily serious tone with the saccharine-soaked environmental sing-along 'No More Eagles' and backed with the hand-holding stadium rocker 'Born To Be Free', it's too much Scorpions 'Wind Of Change' for my taste, guaranteed to induce the dreaded gag reflex. Back from the toilet and thrilled the last eight minutes will never be replayed, my mood improves significantly with the hi-tech 'Go Your Own Way' and the nouveau-wave 'Girls In Uniform' which are both passable as is the Sniff 'N' The Tears influenced 'I Drove All Night' so it's not all bad. Yet, bowing out with the mercifully brief funky/techno instrumental 'White Shark In A Whirlpool' it's clear The Rattles despite three decades in the business had yet to develop a sound all their own which has been a common complaint among critics and a tag that's dogged the band from the beginning and unfortunately still applies with this CD.

In Summary
Still recording and touring, The Rattles are an institution in Germany and I am slightly curious of their 1990 album 'Painted Warrior' which has that 'look' but who knows, probably more of the same?

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This article has been tagged
Tags: The Rattles 
#1 | gdazegod on March 04 2012 23:12:33
Dicky Tarrach was also a member of RANDY PIE during the 70's.
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