Artist: Wretched Child Title: Better Late Than Never Year: 1994 Genre: Hard Rock, Glam/Sleaze, Metal
Category: Full Length Album Format: Compact Disc (Verbatim CD-R) Label: – Catalog No: WC01 CD Matrix: – Comments: – Collectors Status: Very Rare Estimated Value: ~$25 – $50 AUD
Track List 01. Now It’s Time 02. Damnation 03. Believe in Me 04. Fantasy Lover 05. Besty Blues 06. Survivor 07. Batter Late Than Never 08. Sweet Lill Sister 09. Nightmares 10. Wretched Child
Line-Up & Album Credits
(and the “Chanters From Hell!”)
• All songs written & performed by “Wretched Child”
• Recorded at – “Soundtrack 919” Ballarat 93-94
• Produced by – Lyndon Kriss & Wretched Child
• Photography – Thani – Jo Flewers (?) – Deborah Wright
• Other Vocals – Karen Fraser – Simone Calaby
• Keyboards & Ass Sound FX – Lyndon Kriss
• Candid Comments – Lefty & Bart
• Layout A.C.B
Description Wretched Child are a little known hard rock band from Ballarat, Victoria who formed in the early 90s (?’92) and released this one off CD titled ‘Better Late Than Never‘ in 1994. At first glance, this album appears to have a real DIY feel to it. Maybe it’s the hand-written band logo on the front cover, the scrapbook style rear insert photo (complete with flannelette shirts and cans of VB); or the Printable Inkjet Verbatim CD-R. Actually it’s probably all of these things combined! Regardless though, the music here is of a high standard – well performed and nicely produced hard rock. Of the ten tracks featured on this CD, all are studio recordings from ’93 / ’94 with a variety of hard rock styles on display.
It might look DIY, but the songs are great and this is an album that I’m pleased to finally have in my collection.
Artist: Wicked Title: Out on Bail Year: 1989 Genre: Hard Rock, Glam-Sleaze
Category: 5 Track Demo / EP Format: Cassette Label: – Catalog No: – Comments: J-Card Packaging Collectors Status: Extremely Rare Estimated Value: ~$1000 AUD
Track List – Side A 01. Sweet Talk
Track List – Side B 01. Young & Crazy
02. Love Poison
03. Dining at the Y
Line-Up Darren (Ace) Jonson • Lead Vocals
Tris Black • Lead Guitar
Brian (Grunt) McLean • Bass Guitar
Lindsay Jones • Drums
• Recorded May 1989 at Sound Barrier Studio, Sydney, Australia
• Produced by John Hresc & Wicked
• Engineered by John Hresc
• Photography & Sleeve Layout: Calvin’s Studio, Sydney
• Management: Hot Rock Management
While I’ve got the cassette case out, here’s another obscure Aussie hard rock gem. This time from Wicked – a four piece band from Sydney who released this five track demo / EP titled ‘Out on Bail’ in 1989.
As with many of the independent Aussie hard rock tapes of this era, details are minimal and apart from those listed on the J-Card there seems to be little else out there.
Musically (if the band photo hasn’t given it away) this is hard rock, typical of that which was being produced out of L.A. in 1989. ‘Sweet Talk’ is my pick of the bunch though all tracks here are quite strong and really make you wonder why Wicked didn’t leave us with more.
As always, any more information about the band would be greatly appreciated.
Artist: Black Rose Title: Fast Times at Black Rose High Year: 1996 Genre: Hard Rock, Glam/Sleaze, Punk
Category: 6 Track EP Format: Compact Disc Label: Stark Raven Records Catalog No: SRR 001 CD Matrix: IFPI L282 – MADE BY PMI * DCD0818 * #01 Comments: – Collectors Status: Extremely Rare Estimated Value: ~$250 AUD
Track List 01. Fast Times at Black Rose High 02. Fuck Off Back to Byron Bay 03. Tell the Chicks I do Surf 04. Sweet and Sour 05. I Drive a Holden (My Ones a Brown One) 06. Rosso Live at the Dubbo RSL
Not to be confused with a Sydney band of the same name, Melbourne hard rockers Black Rose released an EP titled ‘Fast Times at Black Rose High‘ in 1996. According to details on the CD inserts, the band “formed as a joke” in 1994 and were lucky enough to record this EP in an L.A. studio with the help of producers Daryl Hall & John Oates (!). I strongly suspect those last few pieces of information are also a joke and are characteristic of the jovial lyrics and attitudes of the band members on this EP – including comedian Tim ‘Rosso’ Ross, best known for his role as a radio host on Nova 96.9 FM.
Musically this is tongue-in-cheek hard rock with glam-sleaze and punk influences. There are links to a number of other Melbourne bands including The Bowers, Rocket Science and The City Lights, all featuring Kit Warhurst; as well as Manic Suede featuring Kit Warhurst and David Lord. And finally there is Dashboard featuring Andre Warhurst (brother of Kit) and David Lord. In case you were wondering, Kit and Andre are brothers of former Triple J radio station host / Spicks and Specks team captain, Myf Warhurst. In fact Kit is also known for his part in the Spicks and Specks touring band – The Specktors.
Overall this may not be for everyone – but it’s good fun Aussie rock and you can’t argue with that. A pretty rare CD that I have only ever come across once. Any more information regarding Black Rose would be most welcome.
Artist: Shotgun Alley Title: Growing Menace Year: 1993 Genre: Hard Rock, Glam/Sleaze
Category: 6 Track EP Format: Compact Disc Label: Solid Music Catalog No: SA 001 CD Matrix: – Comments: Digipak Collectors Status: Rare Estimated Value: ~$25 – $50 AUD
Track List 01. White Flame 02. Soul Resurrection 03. Yesterday’s Gone 04. When the Beat Comes Knocking 05. One More Night 06. You’re Mine
Line-Up & Album Credits
Mark Cinque (v)
Tony Wilson (g)
Andrew Dunstan (b)
Chris Burke (d)
Melbourne hard rock band Shotgun Alley formed in 1990 and it was during this year that the band played to a lively crowd of 4000 people in support of Jimmy Barnes at Bendigo Basketball Stadium. However it was not until 1993 that this debut six track EP titled ‘Growing Menace‘ was released, followed by a CD single featuring ‘Because I Love You‘ in 1994. There seems to be little other information out there about Shotgun Alley, although some of the band members were involved in other projects which might be of interest. In particular, band drummer Chris Burke has played with a host of Aussie hard rock bands over the years including Phase, Redback (also featuring Spider), Lix and Kill Johnny.Redback released a hard to find 7″ single titled ‘Goodtime Girl‘ in 1988 (Thanks to Andrew S. for this piece of information). Another project which can be linked to Shotgun Alley is Melbourne commercial / hard rock band Wood N Dogs which featured guitarist Tony Wilson. Wood N Dogs released a CD single titled ‘Same Old Story‘ in 1995.
Image (above): Wood N Dogs – Early promotional photo
Image (above): Wood N Dogs – Same Old Story CD Single