Spider – Rock `N` Roll Gypsies (1982)

FrontCover1Spider were a British NWOBHM (New Wave of British Heavy Metal) band from Liverpool that formed in 1976.

The band, who were often compared to Status Quo, offered an upbeat sound, which was described as Boogie Rock. Spider released three albums in the 10 years they were together, titled Rock ‘n’ Roll Gypsies (1982), Rough Justice (1984) and Raise the Banner (For Rock ‘n’ Roll) (1986).

The band split in 1986.

Spider formed in 1976, consisted of four young men from Wallasey, including 2 brothers, none of whom had played in bands before.

After releasing ‘Children Of The Street’ on the Alien Record Label, Spider were playing, on average 20 dates a month, which included a support slot on the Uriah Heep 1980 Winter Tour.

1982 proved to be the bands most lucrative year. It began in late 1981 when the band were contracted to record for the Radio 1’s Friday Rock Show. The producer, Tony Wilson, introduced them to Maggi Farren. Maggi set up a recording deal with Creole Records as well as getting the band a support slot on the 1981 Slade Winter Tour.

Spider released the single Talkin’ ‘bout Rock ‘n’ Roll with Creole, which featured as part of Radio 1’s play list. They then went into the studio to begin recording their first Album ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Gypsies’, to be released on the Creole label also. However RCA who had made a late bid for the band, and after negotiations, Spider signed a 6-year recording contract with the record label. 1982 continued with Spider packing out the Marquee Club once a month. They played at The Reading Festival on Sunday 29 August 1982, as well as securing a support slot on the mammoth Gillan Tour. As well as the release of their first album.

Dave Bryce, guitarist, currently plays with London rock band AWOL. (by wikipedia)

SpiderReadingFestival1982Spider live at the Reading Festival 1982 (tahanks to Phil Burton for this picture)

And this was their debut album:

For those who don’t know the band was often dubbed a poor man’s Status Quo and sure enough this early single showcases a down and dirty boogie style. While Status Quo is a matter of interpretation here, and I surely wouldn’t disagree with that assesment, I’d also suggest band’s like Eddie And The Hot Rods as a point of reference. Seeing the band play full-tilt boogie style rock, which is certainly on the fringe of the movement admittedly, and then transforming into something with a bit more…well, backbone is interesting. Not that album’s like “Rock ‘n’ Roll Gypsies” completely abandon the boogie. Rather they give it a good kick in the pants. The music on 1982’s “Rock ‘n’ Roll Gypsies” offers more of a familiar NWOBHM sound with louder guitars and an unashamed “let’s just have fun with this guys” attitude. It certainly would never be confused with Saxon, Tank or Iron Maiden and yet, even as it is stripped down rock and roll at it’s purest, if we are to be honest it deserves every bit the attention these other bands got just because it is so much fun. In the end, despite countless gigs and single after single, the band simply called it quites. None of the members managed to stick around in the field of music really if truth is to be told. Even now some will no doubt cast snide remarks about whether or not Spider were really a NWOBHM band as they were more rock then metal. But, from their early days on the boys just wanted to have fun and play music that was no-frills, rock and roll with the same sort of D.I.Y. attitude that made the genre so sweet to begin with! (by metalmark.blogspot)

Okay .. listen to the sound  to this band: Status Quo went wild, became crazy and play heavy metal music !

Dave Bryce (Sniffa) (guitar, vocals)
Brian Burrows (bass, vocals)
Rob E Burrows (drums)
Colin Harkness (vocals, guitar)
Gary South (harp on 10.)
Andrew “Spike” Ward (trumpet on 05.)

01. A.W.O.L. (B.Burrows/Harkness) 4:02
02. Talkin’ ‘Bout Rock ‘N’ Roll (Robinson) 4.01
03. Part Of The Legend (B.Burrows/Harkness/Hodge/Neville) 2.58
04. Nine To Five (B.Burrows/Harkness) 4.30
05. Them That Start The Fightin’ (Don’t Fight) (B.Burrows/Harkness) 6.27
06. What You’re Doin’ To Me (B.Burrows/Harkness) 4.20
07. Lady (I’m Dyin’ For You) (B.Burrows/Harkness/R.Burrows/Dryce) 4.30
08. ‘Til I’m Certain (B.Burrows/Harkness)  4.10
09. Rock ‘N’ Roll Forever Will Last (B.Burrows/Harkness) 3.40
10. All The Time (B.Burrows/Harkness) 3.32


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