Reviews

 FIREBALL RECORDS Reviews

 RICH HAGENSEN and the WAILIN’ DADDYS “Callin’ All Cats” CD:

“…’Callin’ All Cats’ is unreconstructed rock n’ roll and its influences are right out front. Elvis, Carl Perkins, Johnny Burnette, Eddie Cochran, Jerry Lee Lewis, a dash of Bo Diddley, a nod to Neil Young and some weird psychedelic organ that would not have been out of place on a Painted Ship single…Each session features different musicians but the common denominator is the lead vocals and rhythm guitar of Hagensen…Clearly the music is a lot of fun for Hagensen and his heart is fully in the project.”

Richard Samwell & Bobby Herron (BC Musician, Peachland, BC, Canada November/December, 2012)

 “…Most of the tracks are recent recordings, but there are 3 from ’88, and they vary from Rockabilly to Rock’n’Roll and Honky tonk. Part of the concept is remaking some vintage Canadian tracks, including the instrumental “El Ringo”, “Moonlight Party’ and “Ready To Rock”, but most of the songs are Hagensen’s own. Nervous Fellas lead guitarist Mark Twang contributes “Wild Wild Baby” and plays lead on it as well…There’s some fine piano pounding throughout most of the songs…”White River Blues” shows their versatility veering much in the Blues direction…I like this stuff a lot…”

Marc Bristol (Blue Suede News #98, Duvall, WA U.S.A., Summer /Fall 2012)

“…Here we have instrumentals mixed in with jovial vocals of a rockabilly, country swing nature with added touches of blues, R&R and even garage rock…”

Dave Peckett (New Gandy Dancer #108, Swalwell, England, Summer 2012)

“…Callin’ All Cats is a well-conceived mix of ancient Vancouver rock and Hagensen originals. The best of the covers is Jimmy Morrison and the Stripes’ “Ready To Rock” while Hagensen sets the tone at the start [“Callin’ All Cats”] with a scream redolent of the Johnny Burnette Trio. This is rooted rockabilly with a little blues and honky tonk country mixed in. A little rough in places, but that is part of its authenticity. Manicured rockabilly just doesn’t sound right.”

Tom Harrison (“The Garage” in The Province, Vancouver, B.C. Canada, July 17, 2012)

RICH HAGENSEN AND THE CREW “Shakin’ Up This Town” CD:

“…Songs of social justice and protest mixed with rocking country music…Hagensen has been on the road playing his music for more than 40 years while also working as a labourer, social worker and union activist. He comes by his politics honestly and every note sounds like it was hard earned.”

Richard Samwell & Bobby Herron (BC Musician, Peachland, BC, Canada November/December, 2012)

“…more in the singer/songwriter category, with social conscience and protest accounting for many themes, though “Honky Tonk Hardwood Floor” is pure Honky Tonk, and “White River Blues” is reprised in a more acoustic version. Still some cool guitar sounds…I enjoyed it too.”

Marc Bristol (Blue Suede News #98, Duvall, WA U.S.A., Summer/Fall  2012)

“Shakin’ Up This Town” is down home, deep twang, cowboy country with lots of slide and honky tonk piano to enjoy…”

Dave Peckett (New Gandy Dancer #108, Swalwell, England, Summer 2012)

 

THE MONSTER STALKERS “Do The Sasquatch” 7” vinyl EP:

 “Here’s a five piece band (with added female screams on a track) from up north of us in B.C. carrying on the fine NW Garage Rock tradition with a 3 song e.p. featuring the title song – a dance craze number – with organ on the a-side. On the b-side is a revival of the Wailers “Wailin’ Wolf” plus another original…It’s cool stuff…This is a fun record and I hope I get to see these guys sometime…”

Marc Bristol (Blue Suede News #98, Duvall, WA U.S.A., Summer/Fall 2012)

 “…It also carries a fine instro in “Wailin’ Wolf” a fast moving guitar racer with superb piano licks.”

Dave Peckett (New Gandy Dancer #108, Swalwell, England, Summer 2012)

“Behind the name is veteran Mark Brodie and some of his companions in Surfdusters, Beaver Patrol or Metalunas – bands associated with the surf sound from Canada…pure rock of the brotherhood which inevitably contains guitars looking for the perfect wave…A hard to forget at the next party that comes our way.”

Oscar (Garage Punk Hideout website), 2012

 

THE SURFDUSTERS “Save The Waves” CD:

“…Surf music with lots of Fender reverb and saxophone, back dropped by Farfisa organ and a driving rhythm section. These are the children of Dick Dale and The Ventures and they treat the form with respect and, thankfully, no irony.”

 BC Musician #85, Peachland, B.C. Canada, March/April, 2011

“The Surfdusters have managed to find depth in a genre that is often just passed off as novelty. These are completely original, honestly conceived tracks from a group of people who obviously love both the music and the ocean. ‘Save The Waves’ is a well-rounded collection of fuzzed out rockers, mid-tempo rumblers and mellow cruisers that are fun, rambunctious and, at times, oddly serene.”

 Mark Paulhus, Discorder, Vancouver, B.C. Canada, March, 2011

“This anthology from The Surfdusters is taken from their two albums, compilation CDs, cassette releases, out of print vinyl, unreleased cuts and all eleven of the tunes that they contributed to the Spongebob Squarepants cartoon series…Reverbed guitars rule throughout although there is support from Farfisa organ and the occasional touch of sax…they then ring the changes impressively with variations in tempo and arrangement, mixing medium-pacers with slower pieces, using organ or sax, adding Hawaiian or Eastern flavours, and employing different guitar sounds…Highly recommended for fans of the traditional surf style.”

Alan Taylor (Pipeline #86, Surrey, England, Summer 2011)

“…bouts of shuffling grooves and vocally absent melodies full of a fun, loose, breezy delivery.”

Exclaim! Toronto, ON Canada, 2011

 “Probably Canada’s best known surf outfit of the last twenty years. The Surfdusters are back in the picture with this rather nice 27-track compilation of their best original work…you just know you’re getting a lively album full of twang, surf and action!”

Dave Peckett (New Gandy Dancer #96, Gateshead, England, February, 2011)

Older FIREBALL RECORDS Reviews

 VARIOUS ARTISTS “Instrobeat” CD:

 “Rich Hagensen has gathered up a number of bands from the Vancouver, BC scene…styles vary enough to keep it flowing and many of these bands have either not gotten outside the scene much, or are first issued here…This is one collection you should go after.”

Phil Dirt (Reverb Central, Santa Cruz, CA U.S.A., 2002)

“There have been quite a few independent label compilation CDs released in North America which feature tracks from current instro bands. We’ve had the good, the bad and the positively ugly, but I can’t remember one to beat this set from Rich Hagensen’s Fireball label. The quality of the bands, their performances, the material and the production are all streets ahead of the pack…”

Alan Taylor (Pipeline #55, Surrey, England, 2002)

 “Excellent release from Fireball in Canada of twenty different rock instrumental bands all bursting with vitality and octanes of energy…”

Dave Peckett (New Gandy Dancer #64, Surrey, England, 2002)

“This is a whopping 25-track collection by 20 different Canadian surf and rock instrumental bands…there is quite a variety of sounds and styles…a strong compilation.”

John Blair (“Surf Nooze” in Discoveries, Iola, WI U.S.A., 2002)

 

ROCKIN DADDYS “Rockin Daddys” CD:

 “…a general ‘50’s feel dominates…the Rockin Daddys “Tear It Up” is a worthy homage to the era.”

Jason Schneider (Exclaim, Toronto, ON Canada, June, 2003)

 

THE SURFDUSTERS “Surf After Dark” CD:

 “This is the 2nd CD from Canada’s grandaddy surf band, The Surfdusters. They again demonstrate that they are not bound by silly notions of trad limitations, but rather explore further their rich instro appreciation & history.”

Phil Dirt (Reverb Central, Santa Cruz, CA U.S.A., 1999)

“Vous aimez le Surf ce CD vous plaira.”

Guitar & Drums, France, 1999

 “…Great to listen to & no doubt fine to surf to.”

Dave Peckett (New Gandy Dancer#54, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne”, England, 1998)

 

VARIOUS ARTISTS “Have Reverb – Will Travel North’ 7” Vinyl EP:

 “This is a new release from Fireball Records and is a sampler of some of the instro sounds that can be

found in Canada today…The Surfdusters do not disappoint us with their spy-thriller “Danger Beat”. The group retains a nice trad feel and sound throughout the tune. Mark Brodie returned home from Japan…and wound up laying down “Spy Chase” for this record…Mark shows that he hasn’t lost his surf chops or tone…”

Robert Dalley (Surf Music USA, Salt Lake City, UT U.S.A., September, 1997)

“Four “cool Canadian combos” (all from BC) serve up – or perhaps “surf” up – some fine instrumental action here…Long live reverb.”

Scott Ingram (Exclaim!, Toronto, ON Canada, September, 1997)

 

THE SURFDUSTERS “Raincoast Rumble” CD:

 “Overall sound is clean but with a powerful punch.”

Point Break Volume 2 #3, Hamburg, Germany, 1997

“…They have developed a surf guitar sound that, while true to the Californian waters that inspired all surf, manages to make their Canadian input that bit special…”

Dave Peckett (New Gandy Dancer, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, England, 1996)

“…That’s why I like this CD…no lyrics…no pretentious bullshit…just mindless mescal-tinctured waves of bikini atoll serfdom.”

Cosmic Debris, Shawnigan Lake, B.C. Canada, 1996

 

THE SURFDUSTERS “Party On 92! Live” Cassette:

 “…This excellent tape covers the period of 1989-91, and features a bunch of live tracks, (some with their original bassist and drummer, too) from various sources including the band’s basement studio, shows at various Vancouver clubs like The Railway Club and The Commodore Ballroom…The sound quality varies but needless to say it’s all rockin’ stuff!”

Alan Wright (Cryptic Times #5, Seattle, WA U.S.A., Spring, 1994)

“the Surfdusters doing their own blends of reverbed out twang that’ll get your toes itching to grab on to your ironing board. Foam and sand’ll be flyin’ high as the tunes blast from your boom box on this tape of classic rockin’ surf music.”

What Wave, London, ON Canada, 1992

 

 

 

 

 

Listen & Buy on Amazon Or CDBaby
Rich Hagensen and the Wailin
Rich Hagensen and the Crew: Shakin
The Surfdusters: Save the Waves
Rich Hag Wailin Daddys iTunes
Callin' All Cats - Rich Hagensen and the Wailin' Daddys, The Monster Stalkers & Rockin Daddys
Rich Hag Crew iTunes
Shakin' Up This Town - Rich Hagensen and the Crew
Surfdusters on iTunes
The Surfdusters
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