Hello – Complete Singles Collection
(Cherry Red Records – 2021)
Just like it says on the tin, this is the complete singles collection (spanned onto 2 CD's) of Hello – the 70's Glammers from Tottenham, London who had many of their singles penned by Russ Ballard with their own compositions on the flipside.
Musically, they remind me of The Sweet with hints of Gary Glitter and T. Rex – you get the drift right? In the rock world they will forever be known as the band who originally released 'New York Groove' with it's fabulous stomping and harmonica playing – a song that was a big for them and later, Ace Frehley of Kiss when each member released a solo album in 1978.
The original and authentic band, Hello (1971-1979) were made up of four dudes going by the name of Bob Bradbury (Lead Vocals/Rhythm Guitar), Keith Marshall (Lead Guitar/Harmonica/Backing Vocals), Vic Faulkner (Bass), Jeff Allen (Drums).
40 songs to get your head around in total with loads to excite you glam-filled ears with standouts on CD 1 including the 12-bar spookiness of 'C'Mon' and the excellent R'N'B rockin' b-side 'The Wench'; the glitter-band like 'C'Mon Get Together'; the more new wave punk vibed 'Games Up' where they use their cockney accents in there or the sexually explicit 'Do it All Night' and the Quo'esque 'We Gotta Go'.
Then what about the T-Rexy 'Little Miss Mystery' that is rather Mud'ish too; the exceptional 'Star Studded Sham' especially in the bawly vocal dept; the heavier hooked 'Teenage Revolution' which is like a distant cousin of 'Blackbuster' but way more progressive and the erotic 'Love Stealer' that has some disco elements to it that were proving popular at the time with the b-side 'Out Of Our Heads' coming across like a lost Small Faces classic given the 7 inch high heels treatment.
CD 2 opens up with a crackin' Smokie like contemporary song going by the name of 'Seven Rainy Days' with those perfected harmonies leading the way forward with other highlights including the Louie Louie like album mix of 'Another School Day'; more Smokiness with 'Gotta Lotta Soul' but more balsier; the slide-filled and cowbell greatness of 'Midnight Strangers' or the disco of 'Voodoo Eyes' that reminds me of Kiss's 'I Was Made For Lovin' You' with lyrics like Cliff Richard's 'Devil Woman'.
Then there's the likeable but total abortive rendition of Jeff Beck's 'Hi Ho Silver Lining' and the new wave pop of B-side 'Too Much Hesitating'; more disco cheese of 'Feel This Thing' that even comes later as a 12” Extended Version too complete with sexy moaning! A nice touch is a B-side by Local Boy Makes Good feat. Jeff Allen that comes across like a long lost Ultravox song (which ironically enough his brother, Chris joined as their bassist, going by the name of Chris Cross.
Now I know that Mr. Bradbury formed his own Hello in 2002, but how good would it be for the original band to reform for a tour and maybe an album in 2022 – 50 years after they 1st hit the UK as a band in their own right!
By Glenn Milligan