RATINGS: A = must own B = buy it C= average D = yawn F = puke

Blackfoot – Strikes
Rock Candy Records
http://www.rockcandyrecords.com/

Rating: A

With Strikes, Blackfoot released an album that will forever be mentioned in the ‘best of southern rock’ lists for ages to come.  Led by vocalist/guitarist Rickey Medlocke, Blackfoot was signed by ATCO Records.  Previously, they leaned more towards the Marshall Tucker style of southern rock, but when they released Strikes in 1979 it was clear from the first note that things had changed for the band.  There would be no more sweet shit; that was replaced by loud, cranked up guitars and a high energy approach.

 “Road Fever” opens the album and sets the scene for ten tracks of blistering southern rock.  With Strikes, Blackfoot took Lynyrd Skynyrd and kicked it up a notch, incorporating just enough heavy metal to make it rock-hard, but still retaining their southern roots.

The album paid homage to artists who influenced them, as the remakes of Spirit’s “I’ve Got a Line on You” and Free’s “Wishing Well” show.  Of course, Medlocke and the rest of the band give a tip of the hat to Rickey’s uncle Shorty Medlocke, as he provides the mouth harp on the famous intro to Blackfoot’s hardest rocking and classic tune “Train, Train.”  The album ends with “Highway Song” which is not only Blackfoot’s most iconic track, it is one of southern rocks’ most epic songs.

The band hit it big with Strikes and began a run of three albums (Marauder, Tomcattin’) that took them from being a footnote in the genre, to making them one of the big players.

Like most great southern rock albums, the sound and style is instantly recognizable…as is the attitude.  This sucker has them all.   As if the sounds and smells of the album were not enough, Rock Candy Records took the album Strikes and made it even better by fully re-mastering the sound, shaped from 24 BIT digital technology, and included a 16 page full color booklet, a 3,500 word essay, enhanced artwork, photos and a new interview with Rickey Medlocke.

Even if you own this one already, you must own this version as well.  Sell your old one on eBay and snap up the Rock Candy Records version of Strikes, as this is the one you want in your collection.

TRACK LISTING:
1. ROAD FEVER
2. I GOT A LINE ON YOU
3. LEFT TURN ON A RED LIGHT
4. PAY MY DUES
5. BABY BLUE
6. WISHING WELL
7. RUN AND HIDE
8. TRAIN, TRAIN
9. HIGHWAY SONG

By Jeb Wright

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