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Record Mirror singles reviews - 1971
by Peter Jones


I thought you might be entertained by how some records were seen on first release, before history either added hindsight or else forgot all about them. So here are the original reviews of ten singles released in 1971.


Middle of the Road: Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep (RCA)
I know nothing much about this group, except this is a question-and-chorus production with a nice girl voice out front. Though the lyrics are simple and gimmicky, there's a curious Gospel sort of quality to the arrangement. Undemanding stuff, but so catchy that it must rate as a ... CHART CHANCE (16 January 1971)

Tony Burrows: The Humming Song (Bell)
Back with a Tony Macauly song, Tony again sings well and with an individual style. Piano helps the introduction, then into a pretty song, easy-to-remember chorus, with vocal backing tacked on. Good enough to click and so change his sheer bad luck when operating under his own moniker. CHART CHANCE (30 January 1971)

T Rex: Hot Love (Fly)
Good value anyway, apart from the name value right now - a split 'A' side. 'Hot Love' is built round a rolling slice of rhythmic development and the vocal side both relaxed and urgent. Almost a cantering horse-hoof back beat - later on the odd yip and yell, and some beautiful use of violins etc in boosting the sound level. And that apart, it's plain-centre, dead commercial. Do play it, and listen closely, a few times before summing it up. CHART CERT (20 February 1971)

Sue & Sunny: Freedom (Deram)
These two girls have more talent than most of the voices they back anonymously. This is a pretty good song, maybe not directly commercial, but they perform with both fire and style. Big-swinging backing and arrangement helps (take a bow, Tony Hiller and Keith Mansfield). Exciting enough to be a ... CHART CHANCE (3 April 1971)

Slade: Get Down And Get With It (Polydor)
Producer Chas Chandler thinks this will be a hit. So do I. It's a scream-up of an adaptation of a Little Richard rocker and there's a positivie air of desperation as Noddy Holder builds up the excitement. As the feet-stamping goes on, it purposefully thunders along. A split value-for-money flip. CHART CHANCE (22 May 1971)

Bay City Rollers: Keep On Dancing (Bell)
One hesitates to mention it because, that man Jonathan King is involved again, but this is a very commercial record indeed. It's a pacey thing, with banks of vocal work from the six lads, a thudding bass figure and a diabolically catchy arrangement all the way. A foot-tapper, folks. Honest, can't call it anything else. Sounds like a giant to me. CHART CERT (3 July 1971)

Tina Charles: Baby Don't You Know Anymore (MAM)
A girl with good vocal ability is Miss Charles, sounding somewhat like Pickettywitch's Polly Brown on the opening to this. A smoothly moving ballad type of number. But not a hit, I think. (31 July 1971)

Tony Blackburn: Chop Chop (RCA)
From the Chinn-Chapman current hitwriting team, a wee fantasy sort of song which suits Tony's style very well. It's into a bubblegum and rather undemanding sort of range, and the chorus is positively instantly catchy. The arrangement helps the story-line song along. I've a pretty confident feeling it's an upcoming chart-er. CHART CHANCE (26 August 1971)

Middle of the Road: Tweedle Dee Tweedle Dum (RCA)
Co-written by Lally Stott, this is a slightly different sort of song - but it's barely a tremendous progression. Sally 'Road' sings in that rather intense and high-set voice. A commercial sort all round, but without that instant commercial hook that sent 'Chirpy' flying high round the world. But this is no one-hit group I'm glad to say. Good pop stuff. CHART CERT (4 September 1971)

Tony Burrows: Hand Me Down Man (Bell)
A very full-blooded performance from Tony, who sings louder and harder than of yore. Written by a couple of members of the original Edison Lighthouse, and produced by Messrs Cook & Greenaway, it has a commercial slant that impacts right away. Maybe a lack of real distinction about it, but it's the basic power that clicks. CHART CHANCE (18 December 1971)

reviewed by Val Mabbs




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1971 singles reviews
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