After the incredible success of It’s Party Time we started to get antsy for playing live and doing new material. We added Darren Uyeno on drums and Colin Wilcox on guitar to get back to being more of a band. Teaming up with Six Friends engineer Ric Arboit we went in to Ric’s Slack Studio and recorded an EP which felt more like a proper release rather than the compilation feel of It’s Party Time. We had heavy metal guitarist Ray Harvey, who was in Kick Axe to mix, just to toughen us up. Released in 1997 Vancouver Province writer Tom Harrison summed up the release in his review: “It must be galling for Thrill Squad to have been so dedicated for so long to tuneful pop-rock with smart and sharp guitar arrangements only to see younger, less interesting bands steal the attention. This six-song CD features Roxanne Heichert’s most assured vocals, guitar playing by Colin Wilcox and Steve Quinn that chops and chimes brightly, and songs with discernible Beatles ‘n’ Buzzcocks influences that would have made them Britpop contenders if they weren’t from Vancouver”. We didn’t even pay Tom for that one. That was us, Britpop before there was Britpop. It’s all good...
Do you have any idea how hard it is to record good guitar feedback in studio? It’s frickin’ hard! More upbeat happy pop with driving guitars. “I can’t get no sleep or rest, baby baby you’re the best”. Buck Cherry of the Modernettes always said you shouldn’t use the word Baby in your lyrics but I couldn’t resist. My favourite line here was in the middle eighth when I dropped a Telly Savalas: “who loves you baby” lyric.
I’ll take unrequited love for $200 please Alex. We’d have no songs if I wasn’t unlucky in love. Part of the fun though was the fact that I could write the most pathetic loser lyrics, but then Roxanne had to sing them. “I’m a loser and a fool”. The only one better than this was when I got Roxanne to sing: “I am just a simple girl, you could say that I’m a fool” in Clown. It makes up for all the times she forced us to listen to Hall & Oates when we were on tour and the driver got to pick the music in the band van. That’s a true story by the way.
Love this tune as well! Elastica meets the Sweet, with a bit of Stuart Adamson on guitar. Tip of the mod hat to Eton Rifles. “I just want something good to happen to me”. Some great vocal and back up vocals by Roxanne. Colin did some nice rhythm guitar work and Darren really nailed all the songs on drums.
I used to love watching this ridiculous rock show Supersonic in the UK in the 70’s. Bands would appear on the show, miming along to their latest single, while confetti, ballons, streamers and who knows what else was blown in their direction. I reference the show in the lyrics and we ended up trying to make the end of the Heart of Tears video like an appearance on Supersonic after our original Planet of the Apes recreation scene fell apart. Anyway, Benny Hill did a great spoof on the show where instead of streamers a full plate of spaghetti Bolognese gets blasted on a band. So I name check the show on this song. A little bit of Will Sergeant like guitar work. A fun little song.
Hi Chris Cooke! “He’s a killer of sound, baby”. Yeah, no bitterness here. In with the good air, out with the bad.
This is one of Gord’s favourite tunes and the only oldie on this album. Wrote this one when we were living in Toronto in the 80’s. Great bass line and playing on this. Listen to the My White Bicycle run in the break. This has an Echo and the Bunnymen feel. Lyrically it was based on us playing at the Rivoli in Toronto, a great club. We’d be on stage and everyone was lined up on both sides of the side walls just like high school where the boys were on one side and the girls were on the other side and everyone was to nervous or too cool to move an inch or bob a head. After every song we’d do something more outrageous just to try get a reaction out of the crowd. I’m far more mellow now. I’d simply charge $5 admission at the door, but charge $10 to leave.
If you enjoyed these notes look forward to The Day Nobody Came – my autobiography on Culture Shock, Go Four 3, Thrill Squad, and The Irises. Stay tuned for releases of Six Friends and Anchors Away – all unreleased tracks and demos from Go Four 3.