Sunday, 31 December 2017

SLADE SLADE IN FLAME

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Slade in Flame (album)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Slade in Flame
Flamelp.jpg
Soundtrack album by Slade
Released29 November 1974
Genre
Length41:20
LabelPolydor (UK)
Warner Bros. (US)
ProducerChas Chandler
Slade chronology
Old, New, Borrowed and Blue
(1974)
Slade in Flame
(1974)
Nobody's Fools
(1976)
Singles from Slade in Flame
  1. "Far Far Away"
    Released: 11 October 1974
  2. "How Does It Feel"
    Released: 7 February 1975
Slade in Flame is the first soundtrack album and fifth studio album by the British rock group Slade. It was released on 29 November 1974, reached No. 6 in the UK and was certified Gold by BPI in February 1975.[1] The album was produced by Chas Chandler and contains songs featured in the band's film of the same name. The band tried to give the album a "sixties" feel, as the film was set in 1966.
In the US, the album was released on the Warner Bros. label, with "The Bangin' Man" replacing "Summer Song (Wishing You Were Here)" & "Thanks for the Memory" replacing "Heaven Knows".
The most recent re-issue of the album was in 2015, when Salvo Sound & Vision released a repackaged CD + DVD version of the album and film.[2]

Contents

  [show

Background[edit]

By 1974, Slade had become a big success in the UK, Europe and beyond, however the band felt that continuing to provide 'more of the same' was not what they wanted to do. The band's manager Chas Chandler suggested Slade do a movie, to which the band agreed. Rather than producing a film portraying the band's "happy-go-lucky" image, the subject matter was based on the gritty tale of the rise and fall of a fictional 1960s group called Flame. The script, written by Andrew Birkin and Dave Humphries, was largely based on true music business events that had occurred to Slade and other groups of the time.[3]
To accompany the film, lead vocalist Noddy Holder and bassist Jim Lea began writing material for a soundtrack album, which would continue to see the band break out of their successful formula and try different musical ideas. Having completed a fifth US tour, the band spent a month recording the new album. In October 1974, the lead single "Far Far Away" was released and reached No. 2 in the UK. The Slade in Flame album followed in November, peaking at No. 6. Though the record was lauded by critics, the album did not sell as well as expected, particularly as the band's previous three albums had all reached number one.[3]
In January 1975, the Slade in Flame film was released. Although it later received recognition as one of the greatest rock films, the initial reception towards the film was less positive, particularly from fans. Slade's audience did not expect the band to produce a film with a bleak and sour atmosphere. In February 1975, the second and final single, "How Does It Feel", was released and reached No. 15 in the UK, breaking a run of twelve Top 5 UK hits.[3]

Release[edit]

The album was originally scheduled for release on 22 November 1974 but Polydor were unable to produce enough copies to cover pre-order sales.[4][5] Prior to its release, the album was awarded a Gold Disc based on pre-order sales.[4][5] By February 1975, the album had surpassed 200,000 sales in the UK.[6][7]

Song information[edit]

"How Does It Feel" was featured as the theme tune to the film. The melody had originally been written by Lea in the early 1960s and was brought out of the cupboard for Flame. The song features organ, flute and brass backing in places. "Them Kinda Monkeys Can't Swing" is an up-tempo rock track featuring slide guitar by guitarist Dave Hill. In the film, the song is performed by Flame in their first appearance on screen. "So Far So Good" was used as Flame's first hit. The track was covered by Alice Cooper songwriter Mike Bruce on his 1975 solo album In My Own Way.[8] "Summer Song (Wishing You Were Here)" has lyrics based around a holiday romance and was featured in an in-concert scene in the film. "O.K. Yesterday Was Yesterday" was also featured during an in-concert scene in the film.
"Far Far Away" was largely written by Holder, with lyrics about a "man who has seen the world but still feels the pull of his roots". As referenced in Holder's biography, "Far Far Away" remains his favourite Slade song. "This Girl" is a clavinet-driven song. In the film, an alternative version was used with a different set of lyrics, performed by Roy Priest and the Undertakers. In the film, Holder's character Stoker performs the song on stage from inside a coffin. "Lay It Down" also makes use of a brass section during the song. "Heaven Knows" functioned in the film as the B-Side to Flame's hit single, where it is heard being given a quick spin by pirate DJ Tommy Vance. "Standin' On the Corner" features a horn section. In a 1989 fan club interview, drummer Don Powell singled the song out as one of the band's best efforts on record: "I suppose "Standin' On the Corner", from the film Flame. It's got a great swing to it and it's the first time we even used brass."[9][10]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic4/5 stars[11]
Record Mirrorfavourable[12]
Discfavourable[13]
Classic Rockfavourable
Upon release, Record Mirror commented that "because Flame is set in the 1960s, the album has a distinctive 1960's flavour", but also noted: "[As] the songs have been taken out of context, a few of them have lost their charm and meaning but nevertheless, it is an enjoyable elpee."[12] In 1976, Record Mirror would vote the album No. 5 on their list of the Top 10 best albums of 1975.[14] Disc said: "The music included here certainly sounds like the Slade we all know and love. Only occasionally, do they stray from the usual mould. A touchy album but definitely more good than bad."[15]
After the film was shown on British TV in December 1987, London Evening Standard advised people to listen to the soundtrack instead of watching the movie.[16][17] In 2007, Classic Rock listed Slade in Flame as No. 18 on their "49 Best Soundtrack Albums" list.
Geoff Ginsberg of AllMusic retrospectively said: "Slade in Flame is a tough album to judge. Made as an accompanying piece to the movie of the same name, it was different than the group's other records. It's an artistic tour de force for a band that was looked on as "just a good time." Although Slade was that, the band had a lot more in its bag of tricks, and this album shows it. Don't worry, though, because it's still pure Slade."[18]

Track listing[edit]

UK track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Noddy Holder and Jim Lea.
Side one
No.TitleLength
1."How Does It Feel"5:54
2."Them Kinda Monkeys Can't Swing"3:27
3."So Far So Good"3:02
4."Summer Song (Wishing You Were Here)"3:36
5."O.K. Yesterday Was Yesterday"3:58
Side two
No.TitleLength
6."Far Far Away"3:37
7."This Girl"3:32
8."Lay It Down"4:08
9."Heaven Knows"3:55
10."Standin' On the Corner"4:54

US track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Noddy Holder and Jim Lea.
Side one
No.TitleLength
1."How Does It Feel"5:54
2."Them Kinda Monkeys Can't Swing"3:27
3."So Far So Good"3:02
4."The Bangin' Man"4:11
5."O.K. Yesterday Was Yesterday"3:58
Side two
No.TitleLength
6."Far Far Away"3:37
7."This Girl"3:32
8."Lay It Down"4:08
9."Thanks for the Memory"4:33
10."Standin' On the Corner"4:54
1 Listed as "Thanks for the Memories"

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1974)Peak
position
Australian Albums Chart31
German Albums Chart[19]41
Norwegian Albums Chart[20]2
UK Albums Chart[21]6
U.S. Billboard 200[22]93

Personnel[edit]

Slade
Additional personnel
  • Chas Chandler - producer
  • Alan O'Duffey - engineer
  • Bud Beadle - baritone saxophone
  • Ron Carthy, Eddie Quansah - trumpet
  • Mick Eve, Steve Gregory - tenor saxophone
  • Malcolm Griffiths, Chris Hammer Smith - trombone
  • Chris Mercer - baritone, tenor saxophone
  • Paul Welch - art direction
  • Wadewood Associates - art design
  • Steve Ridgeway - logo design
  • Welbeck Photography - production stills
  • Gered Mankowitz - photography (front, back & portrait photos)

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