IT’S 25 YEARS (THIS MONTH) Since the first Heads album was released… so for 2021 Rooster has decided to get the album back in print on vinyl – but changing the artwork. With some silver foiling and bordering, the single sleeve has been boosted to a sweet gatefold, Rooster also got the Radio 1 sessions from the time remastered, and re-cut along with the huge B-side to their Television 7″ “Jellystoned Park”.
So there you have it, a double vinyl silver jubilee reissue of a fantastic debut album!
From the original reissue sales notes:
“The Heads had self-released a couple of 7″‘, and then Cargo Uk’s inhouse label Headhunter UK got to release a further 7″, and then the Debut album in 1996. Amidst a world suffocating in Britpop smarm, the Heads cut a timely swathe with their unkempt rock psychedelique. The album contained 10 tracks of guitar driven, amp destroying rock, with cues taken straight from the US underground, Stooges, MC5, Mudhoney, Pussy Galore, early Monster Magnet too but with a disitinctly British stamp, some of the drone and fuzz from Loop / Spacemen 3, some of the attitude of the Fall, Pink Fairies and Walking Seeds and overlaid with the spaced rock of early Hawkwind. It was obvious that the four members of the Heads were music obsessives. The debut album was recorded at Foel studios (owned by Dave Anderson from Hawkwind) and engineered by Corin Dingley, it was mastered by John Dent at LOUD.”
We’ve asked for some new appraisal of the Heads for the Silver Jubilee edition from good friends….
Stewart Lee February 2021
“The Halley’s Comet victory orbits of historic heavy artifacts from Detroit, like The Stooges or The MC5, leave grateful onlookers aghast. But, hidden away in Bristol, The Heads are still with us now, our homegrown acid-garage godfathers, an ongoing thirty-two year old concern with a back catalogue arguably more consistent than the super-dense psyche-rock groups that inspired them. The Heads arrived fully formed and have spent three decades becoming more like themselves, a musical black hole that sucks in all surrounding matter. I love The Heads ”
Phil Alexander February 2021
“The Heads make music for freaks in the know. If you were there in 1996, you’ll know just what that means…
Back then, they were gloriously out of step with the pop-cheese of the time and geezerly lumpiness of Britpop. Theirs was an altogether different take on music – a take inspired by the glorious burn-out of the ’60s, the sonic overdrive of the ’70s and the axis of joy created by the combination of excess volume and repetition.
We could name-check some inspirations and kindred spirits: The Stooges, Hawkwind, Floyd, Loop, Sabbath, Amon Düül II, Spacemen 3, Walking Seeds, Mudhoney, Monster Magnet among them… But in all honesty, The Heads have always existed in a world of their own, surfacing as and when the mood takes them, before returning to their subterranean rehearsal room to jam their way through yet more mind-altering riffs and mood-altering rhythms.
Relaxing With The Heads is their first defining statement. It is also possibly their most straight-forward release, the sound of a band attempting to find structure in their playing rather than abandoning themselves to their wildest impulses. That would come later…
And yet, 25 years on, this album blasts forth like few records from that time, its slacker charm welded to super-fuzzed riffs that propel its 10 tracks ever onwards. Righteous is probably the only word for it…”
And one our favorite quotes (ignoring the VOX review of 96):
John Peel 1995, on airing the first session //
“..well if that’s not a freakout, then I am a dutch man”