Thursday, 22 March 2018

"Kiss Me Quick, Squeeze Me Slow: The Collection" by MICKEY JUPP (October 2014 Repertoire Records 3CD and 1DVD Book Set - Jon Astley Remasters) - A Review by Mark Barry...






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"...Rock 'n' Roller..."

Industry-wise Worthing's Mickey Jupp has always been a cult – a name mentioned with affection and even awe by those in the Rock ‘n’ Roll know and first on the Rolodex when a boppin' British band is in need of a snappy tune. But like most music lovers in the general public, I came across the wit and boogie brilliance of Sussex's finest sideways - through his tunes done by other people on a whole myriad of fairly well known albums.

Anyone who worshipped at the feet of all things British Pub Rock in the mid to late Seventies (Dr. Feelgood, Ducks Deluxe, Dave Edmunds, Kursaal Flyers, Brinsley Schwarz et al) will have spotted Michael Graham Jupp's funny looking surname in the writing credits of their LPs. The fact that he wrote "Cheque Book" on the Feelgood's 1975 debut album "Down By The Jetty" and later penned the killer riffage of "Down At The Doctors" for the Canvey Island boys practically marks him out as God incarnate in my books. Apart from hugely affectionate/knowledgeable liner notes from Will Birch of The Kursaal Flyers - Wilko Johnson also gets a quote in the attached booklet talking about the outset of the Doctors musical career in 1974 - when intimidated a tad – Wilko shook Jupp's hand in genuine admiration (the music of Jupp’s band Legend was a sort of precursor to the Pub Rock sound). Two years later and Lee Brilleaux, Wilko Johnson and their stunning band Dr. Feelgood would see their live belter "Stupidity" hit the No. 1 spot in late 1976 on the UK LP charts.

Jupp unfortunately never enjoyed such commerciality with his any of his own releases whether it was with R 'n' B outfit The Orioles in the Sixties (not featured here unfortunately), the Rock 'n' Roll revivalist band Legend in the early Seventies (17 cuts included from 3 albums) or his own solo career from 1978 onwards with Stiff, Chrysalis, A&M and Line Records. But that doesn't stop me from thinking that this man's joyful English variant of Rock 'n' Roll isn’t some of the most enjoyable listens I've heard in years.

Repertoire Records of the UK feel the same and are determined to rectify our obvious and frankly unforgivable short sightedness by way of producing this humdinger of a Box Set covering his lengthy and productive career. There's a lot to savour here - so let's get out the chequebook and praise the man they call The White Chuck Berry...

UK released 27 October 2014 (11 November 2014 in the USA) - "Kiss Me Quick, Squeeze Me Slow: The Collection" by MICKEY JUPP on Repertoire Records REPUK 1173 (Barcode 4009910117323) is a 70-Song 3CD and 1DVD 'Book Pack' Box Set of Remasters that plays out as follows:

Disc 1 CD (79:09 minutes):
1. You Know What I Mean (B-side to "You Made A Fool Out Of Me", a November 1979 UK 7" single on Chrysalis CHR 2384, for A-side see Track 5 on CD2)
2. You'll Never Get Me Up In One Of Those (from the October 1978 UK LP "Juppanese" on Stiff Records SEEZ 10)
3. Switchboard Susan (from the November 1979 UK LP "Long Distance Romancer" on Chrysalis Records CHR 1261)
4. Short List (from the October 1978 UK LP "Juppanese" on Stiff Records SEEZ 10)
5. Cheque Book [by LEGEND] (from their 2nd UK LP "Legend" [aka "Red Boot"] released November 1970 on Vertigo 6360 019)
6. Brother Doctor, Sister Nurse (from the October 1978 UK LP "Juppanese" on Stiff Records SEEZ 10)
7. Old Rock 'n' Roller (A-side to a September 1978 UK 7" single on Stiff Records BUY 36, B-side is Track 11 on CD1)
8. Taxi Driver (non-album B-side to "Modern Life", a March 1982 UK 7" single on A&M Records AMS 8208)
9. Don't Talk To Me (non-album A-side, April 1981 UK 7" single on Stiff GFR 001 - originally released Feb 1981 on Good Foot Records G.F.R. 001)
10. Make It Fly (from the November 1979 UK LP "Long Distance Romancer" on Chrysalis Records CHR 1261)
11. S.P.Y. (B-side to "Old Rock 'n' Roller", October 1978 UK 7" single on Stiff Records BUY 36)
12. Politics (from the November 1979 UK LP "Long Distance Romancer" on Chrysalis Records CHR 1261)
13. Shine On My Shoes [by LEGEND] (from their 3rd album "Moonshine", January 1972 UK LP on Vertigo 6360 036)
14. Making Friends (B-side to "Down In New Orleans", a 1978 Australian 7" single on Stiff K-7444 - version also on "Juppanese")
15. Hole In My Pocket [by LEGEND] (from their 2nd UK LP "Legend" [aka "Red Boot"] released November 1970 on Vertigo 6360 019)
16. Joggin' (A-side of a 1981 German 7" single on Line Records 6.13 532)
17. Junk In My Trunk (B-side of "Don't Talk To Me", April 1981 UK 7" single on Stiff GFR 001 - A-side is Track 9 on CD1)
18. Cross Country [by LEGEND] (A-side of a 1970 French 7" Promo single on Vertigo 6832 957)
19. Nature's Radio (non-album A-side to a September 1977 UK 7" single on Arista ARISTA 136 - B-side of the April 1978 UK Promo-Only 7" single on Stiff Records UPP 1 - A-side is "My Typewriter")
20. Pilot (from the October 1978 UK LP "Juppanese" on Stiff Records SEEZ 10)
21. Chevrolet (from the November 1979 UK LP "Long Distance Romancer" on Chrysalis Records CHR 1261)
22. Rooms In Your Roof (non-album A-side of an April 1980 UK 7" single on Chrysalis CHS 2388)
23. Down At The Doctors (non-album B-side to "Nature's Radio, a September 1977 UK 7" single on Arista ARISTA 136 - for A see Track 19 on CD1)
24. Down At The Doctors (Mono - Alternate Version) (from the 1979 UK Sampler LP "Southend Rock" on Sonet Records SNTF 806)
Tracks 5, 13, 15 and 18 by LEGEND - All Other Tracks by MICKEY JUPP

Disc 2 CD (77:44 minutes):
1. Down In Old New Orleans (A-side of a 1978 Australian 7" single on Stiff K-7444 - B-side is "Making Friends" - Track 14 on CD1)
2. Boxes And Tins (A-side to a September 1983 UK 7"single on A&M Records AM 145)
3. Georgia George (Part 1) [by LEGEND] (A-side of an October 1969 UK 7" single on Bell Records BLL 1082 in Mono - Produced by Robin Trower)
4. Blues On Their Own (from the 1980 German LP "Oxford" on Line Records 6.24531)
5. You Made A Fool Out Of Me Do You Know What I Mean (A-side of a November 1979 UK 7" single on Chrysalis CHR 2384, for B-side see Track 1 on CD1)
6. Virginia Weed (B-side of "Some People Can't Dance", a Dutch 1982 7" single On A&M Records AMS 9209)
7. Oxford Dick And The Words (from the 1980 German LP "Oxford" on Line Records 6.24531)
8. Monty Bronte And The Sisters (from the 1980 German LP "Oxford" on Line Records 6.24531)
9. Another Guy [by LEGEND] (from their 3rd album "Moonshine", January 1972 UK LP on Vertigo 6360 036)
10. Lorraine (Part 2) [by LEGEND] (B-side of as 1970 German 7" single on Vertigo 6832 957)
11. Switchboard Susan (A-side Track 1 on a 1983 German 12" single on Line Records 6. 20 094)
12. My Typewriter [by LEGEND] (A-side of a 1978 UK 7" single on Stiff Records UPP 1)
13. Some People Can't Dance (A-side of a Dutch 1982 7" single On A&M Records AMS 9209 - for B-side see Track 6 on CD2)
14. Orlando Fla (from the October 1983 UK LP "Shampoo Haircut And Shave" on A&M Records AMLH 68559)
15. Barbara (from the November 1979 UK LP "Long Distance Romancer" on Chrysalis Records CHR 1261)
16. Poison Girls (B-side of "Don't Talk To Me", a 1980 German 7" single on Line Records 6. 12 939)
17. If Only Mother (from the October 1978 UK LP "Juppanese" on Stiff Records SEEZ 10)
18. Superman (from the April 1982 UK LP "Some People Can't Dance" on A&M Records AMLH 68535)
19. School (from the October 1978 UK LP "Juppanese" on Stiff Records SEEZ 10)
20. True Love (A-side of a 1979 German 7" single on Chrysalis 6155 266)
21. Modern Music (A-side of a March 1982 UK 7" single on A&M Records AM 8208)
22. Standing At The Crossroads Again (from the LP "As The Yeahs Go By" released 1991 by On The Beach Recordings FOAM 2)
23. Brother Doctor, Sister Nurse (Alternate Version) - PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED
Tracks 3, 9, 10 and 12 by LEGEND - All Others by MICKEY JUPP

Disc 3 CD (78:25 minutes)
1. National Gas (Mono Single Mix) [by LEGEND] (A-side of a French February 1969 7" single on Bell Records 2C 006-90.305)
2. Wouldn't You (Single Mix) [by LEGEND] (B-side of "National Gas", an October 1969 UK 7"single on Bell Records BLL 1048)
3. Heather On The Hill (Mono Single Mix) [by LEGEND] (B-side of "National Gas", a French February 1969 7" single on Bell 2C 006-90.305)
4. July (Mono Single Mix) [by LEGEND] (A-side of an October 1969 UK 7" single on Bell Records BLL 1048 - for B-side see Track 2 on CD3)
5. Life (Mono Single Mix) [by LEGEND] (A-side of a 1970 German 7" single on Vertigo 6059 021)
6. Late Last Night [by LEGEND] (B-side of a 1970 German 7" single on Vertigo 6059 021)
7. Don't You Never [by LEGEND] (A-side of a 1971 German 7" single on Vertigo 6059 036)
8. Someday (B-side of a 1971 German 7" single on Vertigo 6059 036)
9. Feel Free (non-album B-side of "Joggin'", a May 1982 UK 7" single on A&M Records AMS 8222)
10. Anything You Do (A-side Track 2 of 2 on a 1983 German 12" single on Line Records 6. 20 094 - for Track 1 see 11 on CD2)
11. Cheque Book (B-side Track 1 of 2 on a 1983 German 12" single on Line Records 6. 20 094 - for others see 11 on CD2 and 10 and 12 on CD3)
12. Daisy Mayes (B-side Track 2 of 2 on a 1983 German 12" single on Line Records 6. 20 094 - for others see 11 on CD2 and 10 and 11 on CD3)
13. Stormy Sunday Lunchtime (A-side of a July 1983 UK 7" single on A&M Records AM 128)
14. Reading Glasses (B-side of "Boxes And Tins", a September 1983 UK 7" single on A&M Records AM 145)
15. Only For Life (A-side of an August 1984 UK 7" single on Towerbell Records TOW55)
16. Animal Crackers (B-side of "Only For Life", an August 1984 UK 7" single on Towerbell Records TOW55)
17. Claggin' On (A-side of a March 1988 UK 7" single on Waterfront Records WFS 40)
18. Driving On Your Lights (B-side of "Claggin' On", a March 1988 UK 7" single on Waterfront Records WFS 40)
19. Be Stiff (1979 6-Track UK-Only Promo-Only 12" single on Stiff Records ODD 2 - Six Stiff acts do a cover of Devo's "Be Stiff)
20. Anything You Say (1994 Swedish CD-single on Gazell Records GAZSI-100)
21. Joggin' (A-side of a May 1982 UK 7" single on A&M Records AMS 8222)
22. I Feel Like Sleeping [by LEGEND] (from their 2nd UK LP "Legend" [aka "Red Boot"] released November 1970 on Vertigo 6360 019)
23. Mother Of My Child [by LEGEND] (from their 3rd album "Moonshine", January 1972 UK LP on Vertigo 6360 036)
Tracks 1 to 8, 22 and 23 by LEGEND - All Others by MICKEY JUPP

Disc 4 DVD (24:31 minutes, Stereo PCM, Aspect Ratio 4:3, NTSC: Region Free, Exempt from Classification):
The Marquee Documentary "Long Distance Romancer" was transmitted by ITV-Anglia on 22 December 1994. Produced and Directed by Roger Deakin

The outer hard-card slipcase offers real protection to the digipak book while the 48-page attached booklet is a lovely thing to behold filled with rare picture sleeves, trade adverts, the Stiff Records Tour of 1978, photos of Legend and even a Vertigo Records Promo Page telling the world the good news. As you wade through the band and session players listed on the final credits Pages (1969 to1994) – the guest list is mighty impressive stuff - Robin Trower, Matthew Fisher, Gary Brooker and BJ Wilson of Procol Harum, Dave Edmunds, Nick Lowe, Rory Bremner and Terry Williams of Rockpile, Kevin Godley and Lol Crème of 10cc, Francis Rossi of Status Quo, Andy Mackay of Roxy Music, Tim Renwick of Quiver, Iain and Gavin Sutherland of Sutherland Brothers & Quiver, Micky Moody of Nazareth and Snafu, Jimmy Jewel of Jake & The Family Jewels, Dave Mattacks of Fairport Convention, Dave Bronze of Dr. Feelgood, Chris Spedding and Production from Mike Vernon of Blue Horizon Records (as well as Robin Trower, Tony Visconti and Francis Rossi).

JON ASTLEY of Who Reissue fame has done the wickedly punchy Remasters – each track feeling beefed up and rearing to go – and not just trebled for the sake of it. It’s a testament too to the original Producers that boogies from 1970 and 1971 can sit safely alongside 1978 and 1979 songs and not sound wildly out of place. Great work done. Let’s get to the music...

Fans will be pleased to see that 10 of the 12 tracks from his brilliant solo debut album "Juppanese" on Stiff Records are featured here (only "The Ballad Of Billy Bonney" and "Partir C’est Mourir Un Peu" are missing) as well as a tasty extra on CD2 – a Previously Unreleased Alternate of the LP’s final track "Brother Doctor, Sister Nurse". 1979’s follow-up album "Long Distance Romancer" on Chrysalis does equally as well with 8 of its 10 songs represented (only "Hard Times" and "I'm In Control" are missing). From there we get 6 of the 11 on 1980’s underrated "Oxford" LP on Germany’s Line Records – 7 out of 10 for his 1982 album "Some People Can’t Dance" (with an extra remix of "Joggin'" on CD3) and 4 of 11 from 1983’s "Shampoo Haircut And Shave" – both on A&M Records UK. And so on...

If I was to single out just one track that shows his talent with a zippy tune and funny lyrics it would be "Politics" - a Chuck Berry Rock 'n' Roll beat chugs along as he churns out "...when I've used up all my guitar licks and got my house out in the sticks - I'm gonna dabble in politics..." He always seemed to get so close but never the cigar - the fantastic Bo Diddley shimmering guitar of "Joggin'" (I called my buddy and told my mate...I'm gonna lose my baby if I don't lose weight...) was chosen as a single in 1982 and received loads of radio play around the London Marathon of that year - but it didn't translate into sales. In fact the booklet tells us that the Mike Vernon Produced "Oxford" album it came off (which he rated highly) didn't sell jack despite the quality of tunes like the radio-friendly boogie of "Taxi Driver" and the witty "Modern Music". Again and again his wit hammers you - In "Old Rock 'n' Roller" Jupp sings from bittersweet experience - "...I'll do it 'til I'm blue in the face...sing and play guitar and jump all over the place...sing some heavy lyrics and the chords to fit...trouble is I don't know when to quit..." You can 'hear' Chuck Berry jump off these songs like he's channelling the great man and his inherent fun.

He can’t give up smoking in "Virginia Weed" – becomes a nerd musician in the testing-testing one-two-three of "Oxford Dick And The Words" and he can’t take whiskey with his water and gravy on his greens but when its come to Muddy Waters and John Lee Hooker – Jupp loves the "Blues On Their Own". Even when he was with Legend in 1970 singing "Hole In My Pocket" - you know he's been there, endlessly wisecracking his way through another hangover. "...You buy the drinks...I'll just sit here looking pretty..." she says in the song and you just know that this lovestruck schmuck is gonna pay all night long. In "Making Friends" he sings of weariness with a twist - "...I've had enough of love and all that stuff...don't want you to miscomprehend...just making friends baby...not looking for love..." Jerry Lee Lewis gets tapped for the piano-rolling "Monty Bronte And The Sisters" – a crazy Rock ‘n’ Roll band made up of that bookish family. It’s also impossible not to hear Jupp sing "Cross Country" and wonder did Nick Lowe half-inch his entire solo career and singing style from this man (and I mean that in a nice way). Speaking of imitation and flattery - the treated old-world guitar of "Chevrolet" with its sexy 60ts Chess Records sound haunting every shimmering nuance - could be Dave Edmunds on Swan Song Records reincarnated.

"Switchboard Susan" gets two outings – the first from 1979 on CD1 and then the Line Records remake from 1983 on CD2 (she's got Michael's extension you know). He then goes all "Monster Mash" with the Bobby Boris Pickett and The Crypt Kickers pastiche of "My Typewriter" – a machine that doesn't feel pain and only tells fretful MJ what he wants to be told. "Orlando Fla" is wickedly good Berry Rock 'n' Roll while the Feelgoods would take "Standing At The Crossroads Again" on their 1991 "Primo" album and practically make it sound like it was a Doctor tune all along (Robert Johnson and Elmore James would approve). Jupp then hits you with something like "Pilot" - a rare and shattering hurt song that drips of real loss – a sailor sunk without trace – a pilot without a plane since she walked away – last time he saw her face. Listening to the utterly brilliant slink of “Down At The Doctors” - Jupp urges his listeners to embrace the sleaze of the East Side of town and invites patrons to "...come here sunny...ain’t gonna do you no harm...I'm just gonna shoot some Rock 'n' Roll in your arm!” OK boss - if you insist...

What good advice. Take mine – invest in this peach while you can and prepare to want everything he’s ever released thereafter. I’ve got a cure...gonna fix all your ills...I’m on my bike now mate...

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