Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Dr. Feelgood - Malpractice (1975)

Back in the night....


Released October 1975

Eight months after their excellent, energetic debut of barnstorming r'n'b in its purest form, Dr. Feelgood were back with more proto-punk frantic bluesy stompers. Their hair was even shorter now (in comparison to the flowing tresses of the prog-rockers all around them in 1975), their clothes shabbier and their attitude even surlier. These were four miserable characters (supposedly), but they came alive on a beer soaked wooden stage. So many punk bands would follow Dr. Feelgood's lead. Think of The Stranglers, or Eddie & The Hot Rods or 999 and many more. This album also saw them break into the top twenty. The first foundations of punk were laid here.


1. I Can Tell
2. Going Back Home
3. Back In The Night
4. Another Man
5. Rolling And Tumbling
6. Don't Let Your Daddy Know
7. Watch Your Step
8. Don't You Just Know It
9. Riot In Cell Block No. 9
10. Because You're Mine
11. You Shouldn't Call The Doctors (If You Can't Afford The Bills)

The album is in stereo (the previous one had been in a stunning mono), but this still has a big, thumping bassy sound, as it should do. Highlights are the rocking "I Can Tell"; the infectious and riffy blues of "Back In The Night"; a cover of the blues classic "Rolling And Tumbling" and the prison rock of "Riot In Cell Block No. 9". For me, you can't beat the sheer r'n'b joie de vivre of "Going Back Home". In that track is the essence of Dr. Feelgood. Great stuff. The group also showed a slight versatility and a willingness to deviate ever so slightly from the all out r'n'b attack on the Beatles-esque "Watch Your Step" and the extended guitar interplay of "Because You're Mine".


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