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Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Rewind: Old New Borrowed and Blue - Slade (1974)

Old New Borrowed and Blue - Slade
Produced by Chas Chandler
Released 15th February 1974
UK Chart #1
Australian Chart #6
Finnish Chart #2
Norwegian Chart #3
German Chart #20
US Chart #168*

* The album was released in the USA on the Warner Bros. label, under the title Stomp Your Hands, Clap Your Feet, minus the tracks "My Town" and "My Friend Stan" (as they had been previously released there on Sladest).

Side One

Side Two

    Noddy Holder - lead vocals, rhythm guitar
    Dave Hill - lead guitar
    Jim Lea - bass guitar, lead vocals on "When the Lights are Out", piano
    Don Powell - drums

Additional credits
Tommy Burton - piano on "Find Yourself a Rainbow"

Singles On Old New Borrowed and Blue
(Swiss Picture Cover)

B-Side: My Town
Released 28th September 1973
UK Chart #2

 (US Release Only)

Released February 1974
Did Not Chart

(Dutch Picture Sleeve)

A-Side: Everday
B-Side: Good Time Gals
Released 29th March 1974
UK Chart #3

(US Released Single Only)

B-Side: How Can It Be
Released May 1974
Did Not Chart


The fourth studio album from Slade had been delayed a bit due to the near fatal car accident of drummer Don Powell and hence in 1973 the Sladest compilation album had been released (and topped the charts). 

As this gave them time they worked a little harder on the musical arrangements for what would become Old New Borrowed and Blue.

The album kicks off with Just Want A Little Bit. The song had originally been released in 1959 by Tiny Topsy and had also been performed by The Animals (which was of course the band their manager/producer, Chas Chandler had been in).

When The Lights Are Out is sung by Jim Lea (he wouldn't sing lead vocals again until the 1987 B-Side Don't Talk To Me About Love). This is probably my favourite track on the album. It has also been covered by a number of bands down through the years including an absolute belter of a version by Cheap Trick for their 2009 album The Latest. In 1980, Jim Lea would release the song along with his brother Frank under the banner of The Dummies. American band Three Hour Tour also recorded a version of it in 1994.

My Town, which was a B-Side to the My Friend Stan single is a typical Slade rocker that would have you stamping your platform boots in time with Don Powell's big drums.

Find Yourself A Rainbow is another piano led song. Tinkling the ivories on this one was Tommy Burton, who was actually the landlord of a local pub that Slade would frequent! Not one of Slade's best numbers but it was covered by Max Bygraves!! 

Miles Out To Sea another typical Slade mid-tempo rock ballad. The song was covered by a German band called Not Fragile and Jim Lea recorded it for his band The Dummies in 1980 as the B-Side to Didn't You Used To Be You?

We're Really Gonna Raise The Roof - Slade at their foot stomping best here, they could churn these type of numbers out in their sleep!

Do We Still Do It  - This one joins the long line of Slade Anthems like Cum On Feel The Noize and Mama Weer All Crazee Now.

How Can It Be - Not quite a Country song but almost bordering on it and it's a style that Holder had been tinkering with!

Don't Blame Me - Was originally the B-side to their huge Christmas hit, a hard hitting vocal from Noddy Holder that sounds like he gargled some gravel he picked up from some local roadworks!

MY FRIEИD STAИ had been the first single (Powell had played on it. He was walking with a stick and had to be lifted onto the drum stool). It was a little bit different in that the song was more piano led rather than the usual crescendo of loud guitars! Chas Chandler had encouraged Jim Lea to finish the song after he had heard the bassist playing it at home. It would spend only 8 weeks on the chart and despite reaching #2 on the chart it was deemed a bit of a disappointment. Strangely enough it actually sold as many copies as their previous single Skweeze Me Pleeze Me which had gone to #1! It actually sounds a little out of place on the album I think!

Everyday - I don't think anyone on plant earth ever imagined that Slade would release a ballad as a single but they did so with Everyday, which came out out a month after the album was released. Surprisingly it only reached #3 on the chart, I say suprisingly because it is actually a real gem of single and surely deserved top spot on the charts! 

Dave Hill doesn't actually appear on the single as he was away on his honeymoon when it was recorded. His guitar parts were done by Jim Lea, who also played bass and piano on the song. When they appeared on TV promoting the song Noddy Holder was "playing" bass guitar!

Good Time Gals - closes the album. It had been the B-Side of Everyday but in the States Warner Bros. had chosen it as the single. It didn't chart.

Bob Stanley of The Times wrote (whilst reviewing the 2006 Remaster on Salvo of the album), "Slade are now known as the missing link between the Beatles and Oasis. This 1974 effort is the pick of their early albums: Noddy Holder’s girder-munching vocals are spread evenly between Black Country rock ("Just a Little Bit"), Macca-styled ballads (the hit, "Everyday"), and the odd music-hall blunder. This is joyous, unshackled and unpretentious stuff that reminds you how they rattled off six No. 1s." 

The Bonus Tracks on the Remaster were:
13 I'm Mee I'm Now And That's Orl
14 Kill 'Em At The Hot Club Tonite    
15 The Bangin' Man    
16 She Did It To Me    
17 Slade Talk To "19" Readers.

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