Hair Of The Dog (CD)

Format: CD
Cat. No.: SALVOCD035
Barcode: 698458813527
Playing Time: 78:22

Extremely influential and deservedly the group’s biggest seller, Nazareth’s sixth album is a deft mixture of monstrous riffs and fine balladry that remains one of the most essential statements in hard rock. 35 years after it was first unleashed, this edition is bolstered by three bonus hit singles (Love Hurts, My White Bicycle and Holy Roller), some wonderful live tracks and more.



More testaments to Nazareth’s power


Second division never sounds like much of a compliment; but when the First Division (of, in this case, 70s hard rock bands) is made up of Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple and Black Sabbath, and your peers  include Uriah Heep and Whitesnake, it really isn’t too shabby.

By the time of these albums (Naz’s fourth, fifth and sixth, dating from 1974-75), Dunfermline’s Nazareth had firmly established themselves on the internationl scene: adept at both hard-hitting rockers (Bad Bad Boy) and sensitive ballads (Broken Down Angel). Their third and perhaps best album Razamanaz - including both the aforementioned classics - had been the all important breakthrough, crucially establishing the band in America. Far from being a fluke, however, the album marked the beginning of a golden period for the band, documented on this trio of reissues.

Loud ’n’ Proud pretty much picked up from where Razamanaz left off. Again, produced by Deep Purple keyboardist Roger Glover, the album is predominantly tough, bluesy, hard rock, the trademarks of the band’s sound being Manny Charlton’s fluid slide guitar and Dan McCafferty’s inimitable gravelly vocals - presumably this is what Axl Rose (a huge Nazareth fan) thinks he sounds like.

Loud ’n’ Proud is the band at their best; soulful and tough, their surprisingly hard-rocking version of Joni Mitchell’s This Flight Tonight proving a standout among an excellent set. A handful of BBc session tracks make a nice bonus and the beautifully-designed packaging makes this essential for fans.

Released later the same year, Rampant has much to offer, but doesn’t quite hit the same heights, despite the inclusion og hit single Shanghai’d In Shanghai. A more rootsy approach gives the album a whiff of the country-rock flavour then popular flavour then popular with acts such as The Doobie Brothers and, even at times, a hint of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Southern boogie, though filtered through the grittier Nazareth sound. It mostly works a treat and this is by no means a bad album but, on the whole, slightly less inspiring than their earlier work. Even so, eight bonus tracks and impeccable packaging make this worth checking out.

Hair Of the Dog, released a year later, shows the band rejuvenated and at the top of their game with their heaviest, most riff-centric album, kicking off with the anthemic, cowbell-led title track. The production captures the fire Nazareth had as a live band and sets the tone for a superb album, exemplified by the rough , prowling blues of Whiskey Drinkin’ Woman. So, a rock classic then, made even better by the inclusion of their trio of immortal hit singles: uber-ballad Love Hurts, My White Bicycle and Holy Roller, plus B-sides and live tracks.

An exemplary set of reissues, this trio underlines just what and overlooked band Nazareth are, compared to peers such as AC/DC or Queen. The excellent booklets, featuring RC’s Joel McIver’s authoritative sleevenotes, plus photos galore, really do tha band (loud ’n’) proud.


William Pinfold



Hair Of The Dog
Miss Misery
Changin’ Times
a) Beggar’s Day b) Rose In The Heather
Whiskey Drinkin’ Woman
Please Don’t Judas Me
Love Hurts (single)
My White Bicycle (single)
Holy Roller (single)
Railroad Boy (b-side of Holy Roller)
Hair Of the Dog (BBC live recording)
Holy Roller (BBC live recording)
Teenage Nervous Breakdown (BBC live recording)
This Flight Tonight (BBC live recording)
Road Ladies (BBC live recording)