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Articles Home » 1978 Articles » Nugent, Ted - 1978 Double Live Gonzo
Nugent, Ted - 1978 Double Live Gonzo

ARTIST: Nugent, Ted
ALBUM: Double Live Gonzo
SERIAL: KE2 35069
YEAR: 1978
CD REISSUE: Reissue List


LINEUP: Ted Nugent - lead guitar, lead and backing vocals * Derek St. Holmes - rhythm guitar, lead and backing vocals * Rob Grange - bass, vocals * Cliff Davies - drums, backing vocals, production

TRACK LISTING: 01 Just What The Doctor Ordered * 02 Yank Me Crank Me * 03 Gonzo * 04 Baby Please Don't Go * 05 Great White Buffalo * 06 Hibernation * 07 Stormtroopin' * 08 Stranglehold * 09 Wang Dang Sweet Poontang * 10 Cat Scratch Fever * 11 Motorcity Madhouse


I review this album 38 years after the fact. In the here and now, Ted Nugent is better known as a ranting gun enthusiast and homophobic, who can't seem to keep his mouth shut and his opinions to himself. However, there was a time in the man's career where he was actually a decent musician (Amboy Dukes, Damn Yankees), and spent nearly two decades in the public eye as a solo act, with backing band in tow. A raft of studio releases for Epic Records ensured his albums were widely available, but I think his live performances captured his energy perfectly. The fact that he released two live albums in the space of three years (this one in 1978, and 'Intensities In Ten Cities' in 1981) suggested his Management knew where the big bucks lay.

The Songs
Of course, the 70's were full of magnificent live albums, and anyone decent enough in the live context were making single or double albums to capture their energy. And quite frankly, 1978 was a boom year for live LP's and 'Double Live Gonzo' was right up amongst them and fitted the bill perfectly. The combination of Nugent and St Holmes was a hard rock match made in heaven, and complimented the band so well. Most of the material is sourced from Nugent's albums between 1975 and 1977. Namely 'Ted Nugent' and 'Cat Scratch Fever', though surprisingly, nothing from 'Free For All' made the 2LP set. Three tracks from his Amboy Dukes era were included ('Great White Buffalo', 'Hibernation' and 'Baby Please Don't Go', the latter from the very first Amboys LP back in 1967), while two new arrangements were added specifically for DLG, including the single 'Yank Me Crank Me' and 'Gonzo'. The energy of this live album is raucous, though much like many of the recorded live albums from this era, you have to wonder how much studio trickery was added to embellish the production? In this case, probably not a lot, but I stand to be corrected.

In Summary
As expected, DLG went high into the Billboard Charts, making it to #13, a pretty good effort considering. After a couple of studio albums ('Weekend Warrior', State Of Shock' and 'Scream Dream') it was back to the sound-boards for the aforementioned 'Intensities In Ten Cities' (clever title huh?), before changing tack slightly as he headed into the mid 80's with less of the manic and more of the melodic, as albums such as 1982's 'Nugent', 'Penetrator' and 'Little Miss Dangerous' would show.

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#1 | Eric on April 04 2016 22:08:28
It's politically incorrect to admire Ted these days and while I've never been a fan, his contribution to hard rock/ metal is unquestionable. Starcastle did a lot of shows with The Amboy Dukes and Nuge and what I was told he was the same way back then, talked like he does now. How did he all of a sudden become a major spokesperson/ blowtorch for the far-right wing conservatives? Good review G.
#2 | Nick C on April 05 2016 03:28:57
Very chequered career - from being indispensable from 1st Ted Nugent to Weekend Warriors then a bit hit and miss with State of Shock and Scream absolute drivel from that point onwards. Live Gonzo was a pretty cool album that still stands the test of time. Nugent though was always a one trick pony, more reliant on the people that played alongside him than he would ever give credit to, as such he floundered after dismissing them. Rate under could have been huge.
#3 | AOR Lee on April 07 2016 07:18:13
I remember Ted causing political turbulence when opening for Kiss, could have been the 'farewell' tour ? If memory serves he was encouraging non-English speaking persons to leave the country among other rants, and all this during his live set ... I've also never been a big fan but checked this album out and enjoyed most of it
#4 | spawn71 on April 07 2016 18:30:41
Yes, Ted is not an easy guy... But I have to admit that this record is a masterpiece of great rock 'n' roll music played live and loud! One of my favorite live records, to say the whole truth. And I don't own any other Nugent's album.
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