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Constellation - 1978 Constellation

ARTIST: Constellation
ALBUM: Constellation
LABEL: Pyramid/Brysongs
YEAR: 1978


LINEUP: Punkin Crye - vocals, guitar * Buster Visage - bass, keyboards * Mike Visage (drums)

TRACK LISTING: 01 8' Oclock Monday * 02 There's Talk * 03 Little Things * 04 Always Be The Same * 05 Sell Out * 06 Walk With Me * 07 Couldn't Have It * 08 Want Some Need * 09 You Don't Know

With a name like this coming from an act in the mid/late 70's, you could be forgiven for thinking this was some half baked disco outfit. Not so. This Constellation were a Tennessee band who were active during the 1977-1979 timeframe. You could say they were a power trio playing a brand of proto-metal. The most notable feature of Constellation was the lead singer and guitarist Punkin Crye (the parents should be arrested for appalling choices in baby naming), who at the time of recording was only 14. Astounding. Crye wasn't even old enough to play clubs, which obviously didn't help matters. He was joined by two brothers: Buster and Mike Visage.

The Songs
It's a raw start for this trio, as '8' Oclock Monday' kicks in. It's definitely not the best time of the week for most working citizens, but these guys will help ease you into it with this head-banging effort. 'There's Talk' is a moderate rocker, then we've got the out of place ballad 'Little Things', which (in my opinion) upsets the flow of the album. We're back on track with the fiery 'Always Be The Same', 'Sell Out' is good too, with Crye's guitar leading the way. I enjoyed the chugging hard rock of 'Walk With Me', played in typical power-trio style. I'll add 'Want Some Need' which comes across like Fortnox. Ther last track 'You Don't Know' also rocks along at a steady tempo, and by this stage we definitely 'do know' that these boys know how to deliver.

In Summary
Much of what you see on the Internet, either through blogs or LP trading sites all read pretty much off the same page. And that is: the band were shortlived, with Crye leaving his hometown Chattanooga and headed for the bright lights of Los Angeles, where he played with several bands, though it's unclear who they were. He was a very talented young lad, who sounded and played nothing like a 14 year old. For a one-off rarity in the proto-metal category, Constellation are worth having a listen to. They certainly dispel the theory that Tennessee is all about country and western music.

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