Watch this before deciding whether to read any further:
If not, that’s fine – no problem. 272 Down – you know the drill, see you next time.
Still here? cool.
I bought Wrathchild Nukklear Rokket 12″ in a sale in my beloved Backstreets Records in Carmarthen in January 1990. I played it twice, decided that the production sucked and that the Jetboy and Cats In Boots LPs I bought the week before were far better and put it away until tonight, seriously. So was I wrong? yes and no, is the boringly grown-up answer.
Yup the production does suck, it makes the whole record sound a bit brittle and cheap and if you’re going to be after one thing in a glam record you want a big beefy expensive production to hide any song-writing/playing ability deficits and to distract the listener from the fact that all the cool silvery stuff she can see is Bacofoil.
But, but, but the case for the defence is that hey, money was tight on FM/Revolver Records and the reason all those flash American bands sounded so flash and expensive was because some serious companies were investing some serious money in them. Wrathchild were NWOBHM survivors, rare glam ones at that, formed in 1980 and having a certain element of the whole punk DIY ethic* behind them, they were old stagers by the time Nukklear Rokket was launched on the poor, unsuspecting Pacific atoll of your ears in 1988.
And you know what? they could write a damn good tune. How many Na-na-Na-na’s will it take to convince you people? pick through the sound and listen, it’s there – chuck a big name producer at them and you’d have cleaned up stateside. No really, it’s far better than I remembered. This may be the supermarket own-brand glam rock platter, but you know what you’re getting.
Anyway how can you resist a purple vinyl 12″ with a cast list like this?**
Rocky ‘Wreckless’ Shades – Vocal Vandal
Mark ‘Stan-Lee’ Angel – Mutilator Bass
Lance ‘Killer’ Rockkit – Terminator Guitar
Eddie ‘Scumbag’ Star – Skin Shocker
Come on – they’re really trying here! I love the video too, produced by Bruce Dickinson. Hmm, that protestor looks rather familiar somehow…
So thanks for unexpectedly brightening up my Thursday night Wrathchild!
*one of the B-sides is an abominable live cover of ‘Pretty Vacant’.
**don’t worry, that’s one of them fancy rhetorical questions favoured by partners/wives etc (the sort I’m never very good at spotting in real life)