GIUDA - RACEY ROLLER
Its often said the 70's was the decade fashion forgot. Bell bottoms, satin quilted jackets, silver suits, velvet trousers, half mast jeans, football scarves and 4 inch platform boots. And that was only the blokes!
Thankfully trends moved on and my personal wardrobe changed to more punk driven clothing (in truth it has stayed that way ever since!). So it came as something of a shock when those nice chaps at Damaged Goods Records sent me a CD for Italian 5 piece GUIDA (pronounced Jew-da and apparently Italian for Judas Iscariot), entitled RACEY ROLLER. It was actually the look of the band that caught my eye, as they sported an appearance not dissimilar to the Bay City Rollers crossed with Sham 69. So, I was intrigued to find out how they sounded.
Apparently rising from the ashes of one of Europe's finest punk rock bands, Taxi, their press blurb trumpets they are a mix of anthemic 70's glam with the punchy delivery of early UK punk. With vocals and lead guitar by ex Taxi members Tenda and Lorenzo, the band are completed by Michele on rhythm guitar, bassist Danillo and drummer Daniele.
To give it that authentic sound the album was recorded in an all analog studio. This apparently resulted in a glam rock sound three chord sounds based on bands such as Slade, T Rex, The Faces, Mud, Status Quo and the Sweet. So, being a child of the 70's, I thought it my duty to find out if these young pups could accurately produce the sound of a bygone era.
And the simple answer is Yes!. From the raucous opener "Number 10" with its football chant chorus (rather apt as the song is about famous Roma footballer Francesco Totti), Mud sounding "Back Home", Alvin Stardustesque "Get It Over" (complete with Chicory Tip synthesizer and Sweet style spoken interlude) the sound is eerily like it's 1973 again (I know cos I was there!)
However, you don't need to be an Old Codger like me to appreciate this toe tapping excursion into nostalgia. All their songs are darn catchy, especially "Coming Back to You" and the Glitterband sounding tracks "Don't Stop Rockin" and "Here Comes Saturday Night". They even find time to slip in an up tempo guitar/moog driven instrumental in album title track "Racey Roller". They close out the album with a fast paced blast of punk/glam rock on "Roll On".
Whilst I am sure they don't see themselves totally as a retro 70s act, they certainly have the flavour of that era, be it pre or post 1976. They are something different, in both sound and looks, to the plethora of Oi! bands that seem to come from Italy. For that they should be heartily applauded and deserve a moment of your time to relive when Britain's dress sense was not at its finest, but the music scene was infinitely more healthy than it is today!