1980COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: LINEUP:
Terry Norman-Taylor - vocals, bass * Chris Burke-Gaffney - guitars, vocals * Brent Diamond - keyboards, vocals * Lou Petrovitch - drums, percussion, vocalsTRACK LISTING:
01 Out Of Control * 02 Slow Down * 03 Coffee With The Queen * 04 Crime Don't Pay * 05 Think It Over * 06 Bust The TV * 07 Success * 08 You're The One * 09 Irish Song * 10 Sail Away
Fans of 70's Canadian rock should be well aware of these guys. Pumps were the forerunner to mid 80's outfit Orphan
, and were probably the second biggest outfit to come out of Winnipeg following after local legends Bachman Turner Overdrive
. Is it a coincidence that Pumps sound like fellow Prairie legends Streetheart
? Seems that way to me, the tight bass playing of Terry Norman-Taylor and keyboard work of Brent Diamond could replicate the style of both Spider Sinneave and Daryl Gutheil with ease I reckon. There was some misguided opinion that Pumps were a new wave/power pop band. Not strictly true, though I do think that American band The Cars
might've been a bit of an influence soundwise. Mostly though, it's edgy FM radio friendly rock with a commercial hook, and with a hint of the unexpected. The band members were all in their late teens/early 20's when this was released, though the songs themselves were recorded in 1979, the album 'Gotta Move' finally hit the market in March 1980.
The Pumps fire off shots from the get-go, 'Out Of Control' might sound like a song about someone losing their sense of reality, but the band certainly aren't. Brent Diamond delivers some shrill keyboards for the very Streetheart
influenced 'Slowdown', the song is a (excuse the pun) pumping hard rocker all round and enjoyable too. 'Coffee With The Queen' is a lilting ballad initially, and though a strange songtitle, the lyrics provide a better explanation as to what this song is about, which has a dreamlike/fantasy aspect to it. The music eventually works its way into a pomp based affair. More Streetheart
flavours abound on the funky 'Crime Don't Pay', a tale of what appears to be a career criminal! Side one closes with the sharp power pop of 'Think It Over', considering this was 1980, a song like this is not unexpected by a band like The Pumps. 'Bust The T.V' has a hint of Russia
about it, with the tinkering piano lines, unusual vocal lines which definitely shout out 'quirky' to one and all. Big parping synths introduce 'Success' and appear frequently throughout the song, but it's the extended guitar solo from Burke-Gaffney that is the real killer! Not too sure what to make of 'You're The One', which could pass for a quirky form of early 70's Britpop. Much better is the power punch of 'Irish Song', driven by a hard-edged guitar riff and some insistent keyboard lines, though the lyrics are extremely dodgy and hateful at best. The solo too is one from keyboardist Brent Diamond. The album finishes up with the pompy sounding 'Sail Away', one that will please all the hard-core AOR and pomp fans.
Just the one album from The Pumps, but the band would soon morph into Orphan
, with a couple of line-up changes. That band would release two albums (both reviewed here), and then in the 90's would reform as The Deadbeat Honeymooners
. Good to see that The Pumps/Orphan still get together on occasion, and that a compilation CD of their material was released on CD during 2006, which you can pick up easily enough via CD Baby. The tracks have been remastered by Chris Burke-Gaffney, who now runs an artists development/production facility in downtown Winnipeg. One for the history books.
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