Na-Na-Na-Na-Nukklear Rokket

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.

Nukklear Rokket 01

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.

Nukklear Rokket 02

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!

272 Down.

Nukklear Rokket 03

*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)

23 thoughts on “Na-Na-Na-Na-Nukklear Rokket

      1. Great point! You haven’t heard my latest, sadly imaginary, band’s Slipper One single ‘Syria’, the chorus goes ‘Al-Assad’s regime ain’t the nicest / Sy-sy-sy-sy Syrian Crisis’.

      2. I’m desperately trying to restrain myself from rhyming ‘civilian atrocities’, with ‘she sure was built to please’.

      3. No, that was ‘Geneva convention breaching Chemical attack’, with ‘that babe from Cardiff was well-stacked’.

        Never owned any Tigertailz, I do remember being slightly embarrassed they were Welsh.

      4. Ah yes, that’s the one! It’s probably been about 25 years since I’ve heard them… I remember a surprisingly decent Metallica cover but that’s about it.
        Ok, I’m putting you on the spot. Top 5 Welsh bands! Go!

      5. 1. Super Furry Animals
        2. Manic Street Preachers
        3. Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci
        4. Goldie Lookin’ Chain
        5. 60ft Dolls
        6. Novocaine
        7. Dub War
        8. Tom Jones
        9. Shakin’ Stevens
        10. Helen Love
        11. The Alarm

        that’s without thinking at all – I’m sure Kylie had a Welsh granny so we should be able to claim here too!

  1. Just reminds me of a glam Sick Sick Spunkbag or whatever they were called. I’m glad this one passed me by. Kinda like what The Anti-nowhere League was to punk. Although, I can’t shout, I made a song about eating worms and got played by Gary Davies on radio one. My contribution to music is often likened (by me) to what Captain Sensible did for West End musicals. Rock on!

    1. Couldn’t agree more, but you know what? They get kudos from me for trying – hell, you try doing your weekly shop at your local Aldi, or taking your car for a MOT dressed like Rocky Shades!

  2. Well, now I know how it would look if the Ramones did a glam metal sendup. Or, maybe it’s Twisted Sister without all the seriousness. I can definitely see the fun and potential here, but …

    1. I know, its just so much more interesting than black vinyl. In a parallel universe as the CEO of a mega-corporation I’d sign them and give them $2.4m to make a great LP.

      You gotta love the video though. As you said, particularly the gun (cardboard and a flashlight?) and Bruce Dickinson in drag – some bands don’t manage that much entertainment in a 20 year career!

    1. I know, i know, I just have such a soft spot for guys like this who went out on a limb and just did this. I’d be pretty confident they dressed like that 24-7 too.

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