Stampede - 2011 A Sudden Impulse

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ARTIST: Stampede
ALBUM: A Sudden Impulse
LABEL: Grind That Axe (Rock Candy)
YEAR: 2011
SPONSOR: Lauren Archer (Stampede Rock), Rock Candy Records


LINEUP: Reuben Archer - vocals * Laurence Archer - guitars * Chris Clowsley - guitars * Colin Bond - bass * Steve Greystone - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Send Me Down An Angel * 02 Jessie * 03 Having Fun * 04 Make A Change * 05 Hard Rock Hell * 06 This Road * 07 Homeward Bound * 08 Shame On You * 09 Natural Disaster * 10 Humble Pie * 11 Flaming Gold * 12 Recharged (bonus) * 13 Flaming Gold (acoustic, bonus)

RATING: image



Another of the original NWOBHM contenders from the 80's has new life breathed upon it.

Stampede, who as it turned out, formed from the ashes of the excellent Lautrec plus Wild Horses before them - are back in the saddle for 2011.

Reformed by the Archer brothers Reuben and Laurence back in 2009, the band have a mix of old hands plus new blood. Perhaps the musical equivalent of Dorian Gray, Stampede were enthused over the 2006 reissue of their 'Hurricane Town' album by Rock Candy Records (not forgetting Retrospect Records also reissued it in 2005).

So much so that Reuben, Laurence and original bassist Colin Bond reconvened the band. Logistics and personal schedules permitting, the 2009 year saw Stampede engage in a series of reunion gigs and the preliminary round of recordings.

The demanding schedule and travelling put pressure on drummer Clive Edwards, who opted out.

The band found an able replacement in Steve Graystone, while Laurence's own schedule also came under difficulty, though he played on all tracks.

Stampede infuse their new found enthusiasm with old favourites U.F.O and even older blues rockers Humble Pie. It's hard to ignore the Phil Mogg influences coming through from Reuben, you'll get no complaints from me, and the sound on the album is big and full.

The Songs

The lead off track 'Send Me Down An Angel' sets the scene for the remainder of the album, an entertaining track with good vocals and lively guitarwork snaking its way around the soundscape, topped off by some nice lead guitar.

'Jessie' is a U.F.O styled throwback for sure, from the lyrical delivery and guitar sound.

Stampede shake and shimmy on the aptly title 'Having Fun', classic rock with a simple chorus but a truckload of attitude.

'Make A Change' is the band's change-up moment, restrained, near ballad, but moves up a notch with energy and heightened guitar presence.

'Hard Rock Hell' takes on an AC/DC persona with its stomping backbeat and lurking riffs while 'This Road' moves into a full-on sassy-blues like rocker.

My favourite track on the album is the AOR quality of 'Homeward Bound', a lighter track with acoustic guitar through the backwash, but the chorus and melodies bring it on home for those with melodic tendencies.

Twin guitars are apparent on 'Shame On You', with this classic rocker picking up the pace on the chorus.

Again, U.F.O are a major reference point, so too on the next track 'Natural Disaster'. Is it a tribute? You would think so with a track called 'Humble Pie', no doubt the late Steve Marriott would be impressed.

The final track 'Flaming Gold' is an acoustic-electric affair which is a pleasant way to finish up the regular tracks.

Two bonus tracks are added: 'Recharged' could describe the reformation of Stampede in the 21st century. Recharged ready to roll, still got the music in my soul. The other bonus track is a pure acoustic version of 'Flaming Gold'.

In Summary

Many of the band's original fan-base will be gladdened to see the band return to action.

The passing years have seen the maturity of its original members give back to the band, and whereas those earlier albums from the 80's might've sounded youthful and raw, 'A Sudden Impulse' has all the vintage of an aged wine, craft and guile as opposed to former youth and enthusiasm.

As mentioned, this album sounds fantastic, and is a much better representation of a classic rock band in its element.

Since the recordings, Stampede have recruited new guitarist Rob Wolverson on lead guitar, adding more fire to the underbelly. A heartily recommended release for those of you into older classic rock, or if you are a fan of U.F.O..

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