Formed from the ashes of Dada, a huge jazz/blues rock band featuring guitarist Pete Gage, vocalist Elkie Brooks and (latterly) Robert Palmer, Vinegar Joe rode on the coattails of the British blues movement, releasing three albums in the early 70s. Over the years, their recordings haven’t been the easiest to track down, despite Lemon Records reissuing ‘Rock ‘N’ Roll Gypsies’ (1972) and ‘Six Star General’ (1973) on CD in 2003, before giving the 1972 debut the same loving treatment somewhat belatedly in 2008. Bringing the Vinegar Joe legacy back to the masses once again, ‘Finer Things: The Island Recordings (1972-1973)’ rounds up absolutely everything the short-lived band ever recorded in the studio and issues it in one place for the first time. Although they never recorded what you’d call “a perfect album” they came pretty close on two occasions, and this set shows off a great band, even though the studio recordings supposedly never captured the fire of their live shows. There are enough great tracks scattered throughout the three discs to potentially attract a new generation of fans.
As a contrast to the ‘Progessive Pop Sounds’ sets from Cherry Red Records subsidary label, Grapefruit, this anthology from sister outlet Esoteric opts for something far more rock oriented, and although the four disc delve into 1970 doesn’t necessary dig too deep for obscurities, it still plays very well as a compilation in its own right. In a little over four hours, it serves up nostalgia, unfamiliar curiosities and enough genuine classics to give a solid overview of the year’s prog-leaning and guitar heavy sounds.
The global pandemic of 2020 knocked everyone and everything for six. People found themselves working from home and only meeting their friends virtually across a connected network of webcams. Businesses closed – both temporarily and permanently – and some places became ghost towns. Seaside tourist industries suffered; restaurants and pubs wondered if we’d truly reached the end times, and the entertainment industry ground to a halt with gigs being endlessly postponed. For James Robert Morrison, this seemingly endless landscape of bleakness became something of an inspiration. As man who’d always centred his work around social commentary, current affairs and the state of things in his immediate surroundings, the seemingly broken world and the online anger and self-entitlement surrounding it resulted in a huge burst of creativity.
Beloved stoner/doom metal band Orange Goblin have a busy few months ahead. They’ve confirmed a run of tour dates for the end of the year (circumstances allowing), but before that, their 2007 album ‘Healing Through Fire’ will be treated to a massively expanded reissue after spending a long time in an out of print limbo.
‘Healing Through Fire’ will be reissued as a lavish double disc set featuring eighteen bonus tracks. In addition to a handful of unreleased demos, the deluxe set will also feature a live session recorded for the Radio 1 Rock Show and a complete live gig recorded at London’s Mean Fiddler back in 2006.
All the necessary details, the full track listing and the upcoming tour dates can be found in the press release below.
HEALING THROUGH FIRE
20 August 2021
special reissue of classic album, featuring a wealth of bonus material
British heavy metal legends revisit their 2007 classic
UK heavy metal titans Orange Goblin have announced the release of special deluxe reissue of their 2007 album ‘Healing Through Fire’, expanding the package to a whopping 35 tracks and adding new liner notes from each band member. The package will be released by Dissonance Productions, the Heavy Metal arm of Cherry Red Records.
Boasting re-worked artwork, and housed in a deluxe double digipack, the new edition of ‘Healing Through Fire’ is considered by the band to be the definitive version of what was their first release after leaving Rise Above Records.
A loosely themed concept album based upon London during The Plague and The Great Fire of London, the album was met with critical acclaim upon its release.
Disc 1 features the original album, remastered, and adds four BBC Radio One Rock Show Session tracks, as well as three demos from 2006, including a raucous cover of The Damned’s ‘New Rose’.
Disc 2 contains a full 11 track live set recorded at the Mean Fiddler in London in 2006, showcasing the Orange Goblin live experience in all its high volume high octane glory.
Vocalist Ben Ward explains the thoughts behind the release:
‘People have been asking us to reissue ‘Healing Through Fire’ for a few years now so when the time came we wanted to make sure it was done well. We are really happy to present this version of the album with all new artwork and extensive liner notes from all of the band.
The audio on the studio album and the extras has all been remastered and sounds better than ever so we feel that Cherry Red / Dissonance Productions and the team there have done it justice. This is a very special album to us as a band as it marked a period of transition for us after the first five albums had been released by Rise Above Records – this was our first venture with a new label.
It’s an album that stands alone in our catalogue as being the only one loosely based around a certain ‘concept’ and the themes, artwork and imagery of that have been brilliantly brought up to date with this stunning reissue. There are also some rare gems included from our BBC Radio One Rock Show session recorded at Maida Vale studios in London as well as some demos and a cover we recorded in Boston prior to our US tour with Scissorfight in 2006. Crack open a cold beer and PLAY IT LOUD!’
The ‘Healing Through Fire’ 2CD deluxe version is available to pre-order now here:
CD 1 – HEALING THROUGH FIRE
1. The Ballad of Solomon Eagle
2. Vagrant Stomp
3. The Ale House Braves
4. Cities of Frost
5. Hot Knives and Open Sores
6. Hounds Ditch
7. Mortlake (Dead Water)
8. They Come Back (Harvest of Skulls)
9. Beginners Guide to Suicide
10. The Ballad of Solomon Eagle (Radio One Rock Show 17.08.07)
11. They Come Back (Harvest of Skulls) (Radio One Rock Show 17.08.07)
12. Scorpionica (Radio One Rock Show 17.08.07)
13. Blue Snow (Radio One Rock Show 17.08.07)
14. The Ballad of Solomon Eagle (2006 Demo)
15. They Come Back (Harvest of Skulls) (2006 Demo)
16. New Rose (2006 Demo)
CD 2 – LIVE AT THE MEAN FIDDLER, LONDON, DECEMBER 16, 2006
2. Some You Win, Some You Lose
3. Quincy the Pig Boy
4. Getting High on the Bad Times
5. The Ballad of Solomon Eagle
6. Hot Magic, Red Planet
7. Round Up the Horses
8. They Come Back (Harvest of Skulls)
9. Your World Will Hate This
10. Blue Snow
Formed in 1995 under their original name of Our Haunted Kingdom, the band have released 9 studio albums, with the latest effort, ‘The Wolf Bites Back’, released in 2018, featuring a guest appearance from Motorhead guitarist Phil Campbell. 2012’s ‘A Eulogy for the Damned’ was named in Metal Hammer’s Top 3 albums of that year and the same year the band were crowned ‘Best British Band’ in the annual Terrorizer Magazine polls. Orange Goblin’s first five albums were released on Lee Dorrian’s iconic Rise Above Records, with 2002’s ‘Coup de Grace’ produced by Scott Reeder of Kyuss and The Obsessed. Albums have been punctuated with split releases throughout the bands career with the likes of Electric Wizard and Alabama Thunderpussy.
In 2016 frontman Ben Ward gained national media coverage and widespread gratitude after initiating a fundraising campaign which raised money for the staff of music publisher Team Rock who were made suddenly unemployed when the company was placed into administration. Ward and his wife received a Metal Hammer Award in recognition of their efforts.
The band recently played two successful live stream shows to a global audience, celebrating their 25th Anniversary. The shows were the last with the band for bassist and founding member Martyn Millard, who departed after their completion. Orange Goblin announced Harry Armstrong as Millard’s replacement, and are set to embark on their delayed 25th Anniversary tour this autumn, dates as follows:
Orange Goblin 2021 Tour Dates:
Sat 31 Jul – The Yard, Cornwall, UK
Sun 15 Aug – Bloodstock Open Air (Main Stage), UK
Sun 22 Aug – Dynamo Metalfest, Eindhoven, NL
Sat 02 Oct – Headbangers Balls Festival, Izegem, BE
Fri 05 Nov – Night of Salvation (Damnation Fest), Leeds, UK
Sat 04 Dec – Dome of Rock Festival, Salzburg, AT
Wed 08 Dec – The Booking Hall, Dover, UK
Thu 09 Dec – The Tivoli, Buckley, UK
Fri 10 Dec – Limelight 2, Belfast, UK
Sat 11 Dec – Grand Social, Dublin, IRE
Mon 13 Dec – King Tuts, Glasgow, UK
Tue 14 Dec – Gorilla, Manchester, UK
Wed 15 Dec – Asylum, Birmingham, UK
Thu 16 Dec – The Globe, Cardiff, UK
Fri 17 Dec – The Underworld, London, UK
Sat 18 Dec – The Underworld, London, UK
The late 60s and early 70s were a great time for experimentation and free spirited sounds. From within the psychedelic scene came various bands who were less enthralled with rainbows and being “home in time for tea”, preferring instead to stretch blues origins into dark and heavy places, inspiring a generation of guitar heroes. Others took a mod and freakbeat approach and ladled on the distortion thus creating a more inventive take on a garage rock sound, something which arguably helped to spawn punk. By cranking their amps and embracing an artistic freedom, there were a whole spectrum of bands slowly changing the musical landscape. The original ‘I’m A Freak Baby’ box set (released by Grapefruit Records in 2016) gave a solid overview of the era for the curious listener. Although it featured a lot of material that keener rock fans would already own, it still played well as a compilation in its own right. Popular tunes by Deep Purple, Uriah Heep and Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac could be found alongside cult numbers by Pink Fairies and The Groundhogs, as well as a few genuine obscurities from Barnabus, Sweet Slag and Cycle. A second triple disc set released in 2019 offered more gems, but dug even deeper for rarities with unreleased tracks from Natural Gas, Thor, Tarsus, and more besides.