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Articles Home » 1980 Articles » Snowball (Germany) - 1980 Follow The White Line
 
Snowball (Germany) - 1980 Follow The White Line



ARTIST: Snowball (Germany)
ALBUM: Follow The White Line
LABEL: WEA Germany
SERIAL: 58 104
YEAR: 1980
CD REISSUE: 2011, Sireena

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Kristian Schultze - keyboards, producer * Curt Cress - drums, percussion, producer * Roykey Wydh - guitar * Wally Warning - bass, vocals * Eddie Taylor - saxophone, vocals * Tom Cunningham, Ramesh - background vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 I Can't See The Light * 02 New Generation * 03 Let Me Be Me * 04 Put Down * 05 Follow The White Line Part I * 06 Follow The White Line Part II * 07 I Wanna Be A City By * 08 Forgive Your Mother, Brother


Background
This is one of the coolest records from the bygone daze that I've heard in recent times. They are the German band Snowball, with links to bands Passport, Saga and Nektar. They started life off as a jazz rock band, featuring a mix of German, British and American musicians. Cress and Schultze were previously with Passport, while one of the original members was Roye Albrighton, previously with Nektar. Snowball released three albums in their tenure: 1978's debut 'Defroster', 1979's 'Cold Heat' and this final set from 1980 'Follow The White Line'. The band's sound changed during the course of those three years. From progressive jazz rock to blues rock, to a more commercial hard rock sound by the time Snowball got to this album. The personnel had changed too, with former Tax bassist/vocalist Ewald 'Wally' Warning joining in on this one.


The Songs
'I Can't See The Light' is a sensational piece of early 80's pomp, with Balance styled zaniness, and some very cool synth work from Schultze. I believe sax player Eddie Taylor is doing the lead vocals here, and he sounds fantastic! 'New Generation' chugs along nicely, and there's no trace of their jazz rock origins to be found. 'Let Me Be Me' with its big piano/wurlitzer sound is very American sounding, perhaps as a rough guide: Joe Cerisano and Silver Condor! Snowball go for broke with the fast-paced and excellent 'Put Down', think Speedway Boulevard and Balance meeting at the crossroads! The title track is split into two parts. The first is a 7 minute instrumental while the second part takes on a funkier style though not quite heading off into jazz rock territory. 'I Wanna Be A City Boy' sounds like commercial southern rock in the vein of Wet Willie.. and bands of that ilk. It works well for these geographically challenged Germans! The closer 'Forgive Your Mother, Brother' meanders for the most part. Ballad for about three quarters, it follows an AOR like structure but never rises to a crescendo, despite sounding quite good.


In Summary
The band continued through until the end of 1981 before jacking it in. Cress went on to Saga for a bit, Warning went back to a solo career playing Caribbean flavoured reggae/rock, while Schultze moved ahead with another band, the new age inspired Cusco. Schultze passed away in 2011 aged 66. If you get the opportunity to listen to this, don't let it pass you by!


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Comments
#1 | gdazegod on November 30 2014 00:56:14
Snowball - 1980 I Can't See The Light
YouTube Video:
#2 | Traveller in time on November 30 2014 09:58:03
What a shame, i`m (german) never heard of this band.
#3 | gdazegod on November 30 2014 11:05:10
It's on CD. Track it down!
#4 | Eric on November 30 2014 12:46:49
It is a cool record. Curt Cress was all over the German scene back then. He was heavily involved with Atlantis and a slew of krautrock/ krautfusion one-off projects but also with bigshots Meatloaf, Scorpions and others. I had an 80's electronic LP by Kristian Schultze called Metronomics which was fairly derivative but enjoyable.
#5 | Jez on November 30 2014 13:22:40
Fab song, will have to track this one down
 
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