NWOBHM WEDNESDAY:SHOCK TREATMENT
One 7" single. That was all there was to East Anglia's Shock Treatment. Even by NWOBHM standards, where hardcore collectors would beat up old ladies if it meant they could grab that one missing single they so desperately crave, this is a obscure band/single. If not for the NWOBHM ENCYCLOPEDIA I highly doubt that more than a handful of people would have even cared about this 1980 single. Released on Skull Records (?) this is one interesting 7" release that deserved a better reception than it got. Side A ("The Mugger") is a heavy (skull crushing/fuzzed out heavy) number that sounds like Motörhead, AC/DC and fellow NWOBHM band Demolition getting together for a night of rip roaring drunkenness. It's a crushing number and the way it is pulled off it sounds as if all the band had on their mind was smashing everything in sight. It's hard to know who plays what here (the band members are listed, but only their names are given-Carr, Crowbar Eddie, Evans, and Ward), but whoever (or whatever) handles leads vocals sounds like a more mean and temperamental version of Lemmy. It isn't pretty, but man does this guy ever get your attention! Meanwhile the guitar solo are just as blistering. These guys knew how to not only handle their instruments, but play the crap out of them. The leads are smoking and hot to the touch! Odd to think that beyond this lone single the band just vanished. What happened? There was talent behind these musicians so surely you would have thought at least one of them might stumble into another band. Anyway, the B Side is a lovely little track called "Nuclear Warfare". It's more of a slow number that, despite the title, is anti-nuclear war in nature. How about that? You mean to tell me it wouldn't be a good idea to turn our would into an apocalyptic nightmare? Will wonders never cease! Anyway, don't let that bit about it being slower turn you off because this is one raw and gritty rocker. It's a doom classic without the doom. It's one of those numbers that is heavy for all the right reasons. Like I said these two songs are all we have from Shock Treatment although they are both long so that is at least some conciliation. Still, this whole thing strikes me as being rather criminal. If you ask me (and I know nobody did, but just bare with me while I rant a bit!) it sucks eggs that killer metal like this (and the bands that play this sort of raw and real heavy metal) is always limited in quantity. Why is it that some bands from the same era (you know who they are!) released album after album until it was quite obviously to anyone with ears that they were well-past the use by date and then great bands like this manage only one single? I just do not understand that logic. Do record labels just not hear the garbage they put out or is it the idiot public who buys the crap music that we have to blame? I wish I knew the answer. Anyway, you can find samples of this killer single on Youtube and there are downloads floating about on the web. So do yourself a favor today and check out a real hidden treasure. Even if that album art above does not fill you with that much confidence trust me when I say this bands is the real deal. No-frills, crushing heavy metal with anger, violence and frustration to spare!