The Glory Days of Aussie Pub Rock Vol. 2
Depending on your personal tastes, you’re likely to regard this compilation as exhaustively comprehensive, or exhaustingly overblown. At 90 songs spread over four discs, it isn’t going to hold anyone’s attention for its entirety, but that probably isn’t the intention here.
Buster Brown’s 1973 version of Roll Over Beethoven (featuring Angry Anderson and Phil Rudd) presents the archetypical sound of Australian pub-rock – raw, belligerent and utilitarian. To hear The Screaming Jets’ nauseating cover of the Boys Next Door’s Shivers within the space of a few tracks is deflating.
There are loads of good songs here, and every sub-genre of this overarching pub-rock theme is represented well. From the post-prime, janglier versions of punk legends like The Saints and the Hitmen, the power pop genius of the Sunnyboys, the crisp new-wave sound embodied by The Church, and plenty of MOR hard rock. Indigenous groups Warumpi Band and No Fixed Address are welcome inclusions amidst the interminable white noise. Lineal references to ‘60s Aussie garage appear in Jim Keays’ decent 1975 update of his own Undecided, the first A-side released by the Masters Apprentices, and the Divinyls’ famous take on the Easybeats’ I’ll Make You Happy.
By Lee Parker