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Max Webster - 1978 Mutiny Up My Sleeve
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on July 16 2017, In 1978 Articles , 2 Comments , 99 Reads , Print

ARTIST: Max Webster
ALBUM: Mutiny Up My Sleeve
LABEL: Anthem
SERIAL: ANR-1-1012
YEAR: 1978
CD REISSUE: 2012, Rock Candy Records, CANDY108
SPONSOR: Rock Candy Records


LINEUP: Kim Mitchell - lead vocals, guitars * Terry Watkinson - keyboards, vocals * Gary Mc Cracken - drums, percussion * Dave Myles - bass, vocals * Pye Dubois - lyricist

Additional Vocals: Carla Jensen, Judy Donnelly

TRACK LISTING: 01 Lip Service * 02 Astonish Me * 03 Let Your Man Fly * 04 Water Me Down * 05 Distressed * 06 The Party * 07 Waterline * 08 Hawaii * 09 Beyond The Moon

We're now three albums into the career of Max Webster. If you enjoyed the first two albums of quirky hard rock with a style compass pointing in all directions, then 'Mutiny..' might prove to be the catalyst for change. Many have claimed this to be their favourite LP from these Canadians, but by this stage, the band were being drawn into typical record company politics. Maybe in an attempt to corral these blokes into the center-lane, the creative edge was ever so slightly being curtailed. Not helping the band's cause was the mid-season departure of producer Terry Brown, and also bassist Mike Tilka, who was fired and then replaced by Dave Myles. Tilka eventually came back as MW's new manager and producer. Go figure!

The Songs
Personally I'm not convinced that the band had lost their mojo by 1978, despite Brown walking away from the producers chair. I can still hear some energy - there or thereabouts. Variation still abounds among the nine tracks.

'Lip Service' kicks off as a straight-ahead rocker with copious amounts of organ and obligatory humourous lyric.

'Astonish Me' moves between mellow and rockier passages. This one sounds a bit like fellow Toronto band Surrender.

The guitar tone on 'Let Your Man Fly' sounds like GDM favourites Creed; obviously Mitchell has his wah-pedal set at the halfway position to achieve that tone.

'Water Me Down' isn't the best Max song I've ever heard, it drifts too far, it could fall off the edge. The vocal sounds like something Toto would do circa 'Hydra', but don't consider that to be a compliment.

'Distressed' is trying hard to be anything other than a Max song, though Kim's guitar is enjoyable. In fact, musically the band go for it on the solo section.. Guitars, keys and percussion work.

'The Party' - described as Max's crazy moment. Hard rock meets prog, somewhere between The Tubes and Frank Zappa. Pick the eyes out of this one!

'Waterline' is another oddball track, which could resemble anything from Hilly Michaels to Walter Egan.

I don't know what to make of 'Hawaii', which is mostly instrumental. Sounds like there could be a Rush reference to it, I could be wrong.

'Beyond The Moon' is the closer at 6 and a half minutes, and shuffles through varying undulations and mood. It's got a bit of everything, so take from it what you will.

In Summary
'Mutiny..' makes for a diverse listening experience. Long time fans will probably know what I mean by that. If you read the liner notes of the Rock Candy CD reissue, you can get a fair idea as to what was going on in their camp during this time. The fact that they lasted a few more years with two more studio albums and a live album is remarkable to say the least.

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Facebook Comments
#1 | rkbluez on July 17 2017 01:19:43
Yip my favorite Max Webster but then again I love all of their albums as well as Kim Mitchell's solo stuff...and still waiting and hoping Rock Candy will finish up their catalog and at least do A Million Vacations and Universal Juveniles...and maybe even do Kim Mitchel stuff like Akimbo Alogo...the original Alert CD I have could use some serious remastering.
#2 | Carl Noonan on July 17 2017 10:01:17
Max Webster were one of the best bands ever. Absolutely love them and was lucky enough to see them live twice with Rush. This album has everything and deserves wider praise. Brilliant musicianship combined with superb songs make this a classic hard rock album.
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