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GIRLSCHOOL - Demolition cover
3.42 | 9 ratings | 2 reviews
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Album · 1980

Filed under NWoBHM


1. Demolition Boys (3:40)
2. Not for Sale (3:33)
3. Race With the Devil (2:52)
4. Take It All Away (3:43)
5. Nothing to Lose (4:32)
6. Breakdown (3:07)
7. Midnight Ride (3:08)
8. Emergency (2:51)
9. Baby Doll (4:14)
10. Deadline (2:55)

Total Time: 34:35


- Kim McAuliffe / Guitars (rhythm), Vocals
- Kelly Johnson / Guitars (lead), Vocals
- Enid Williams / Bass, Vocals
- Denise Dufort / Drums

About this release

Bronze Records, June 30th, 1980

Race With The Devil is a cover originally performed by The Gun, a psychedelic rock band led by Adrian Gurvitz in the late 60's.

Baby Doll is live.

Re-released by Dojo Ltd. in 1991, together with Hit And Run, on one cd.

Re-released again on June 14, 2004, on Castle Records, with 8 bonus tracks:
11. Take It All Away (Single Version) [Bonus Track]
12. It Could Be Better (Single Version) [Bonus Track]
13. Nothing To Lose (Demo From The Vaults) [Bonus Track]
14. Not For Sale [Bonus Track]
15. Furniture For The Fire (B-Side Of Emergency) [Bonus Track]
16. Take It All The Way (BBC Friday Rock Show) [Bonus Track]
17. Breakdown (BBC Friday Rock Show) [Bonus Track]
18. Demolition Man (BBC Friday Rock Show) [Bonus Track]

Thanks to UMUR, 666sharon666, Unitron for the updates


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

"Demolition" is the debut full-length studio album by UK hard/heavy rock act Girlschool. The album was released through Bronze Records in June 1980. Girlschool was formed in 1975 as an all girl rock covers band under the Painted Lady monicker, but after some lineup changes, they changed their name to Girlschool in 1978. They released the "Take it all away" single in 1979, which came to the attention of Lemmy from Motörhead, who helped them get the support slot on Motörhead´s 1979 "Overkill" tour. After the tour Girlschool signed with Bronze Records (at the time also home of Motörhead).

Stylistically the music on "Demolition" is sweaty and raw, badass rock´n´roll played by girls. Especially the instrumental part of the music takes no prisoners, and sounds like a combination of AC/DC, The Runaways, and Motörhead. So basically über amplified blues based hard rock. To my ears the female vocals lack a bit of grit and rawness, and takes away from the otherwise raw power of the music, but they are skillfully delivered, and it´s overall obvious that these girls can play/sing.

The material on the 10 track, 34:35 minutes long album is consistent in both quality and style. Vers/chorus structured and quite catchy rock´n´roll songs with few surprises, carried by a strong playing band and a well sounding and organic production. All tracks feature a great energy level which is one of the great assets of the album. I´d mention the Joan Jett influenced "Breakdown" as one of the highlights. "Demolition Boys" which opens the album and "Baby Doll", which is a live recording also stand out. Overall "Demolition" is a pretty great listen if you enjoy female fronted hard rock and had the vocals been a bit more raw I would probably have given a 4 star (80%) rating, but as it is the vocals drag my rating down to a 3.5 star (70%) rating.
The debut “Demolition” for all girl British metal band Girlschool is quite an achievement featuring some of their best material and two bonafide classics that became live staples and huge hits in the UK. The single that topped the chart was a cover of The Gun’s ‘Race With the Devil’ with some scorching lead riffs played beautifully by Kelly Johnson. She was their lead vocalist but did not sing on this, that job was left to bassist Enid Williams. She does a fine job and the film clip shows her having a lot of fun on this; she was always cracking up while the other members were rather serious. The hit was a blockbuster version and always stayed firm in my memory as a teen listening to these rocking babes. Kelly on guitar is devestating on this.

The other big hit was the single, ‘Emergency’ with the chorus “911 Emergency” repeated over and over. The chords were simple, skull crushing ‘A’ and ‘E’ chords that crashed down. The themes of the lyrics was simple, “Can't make out, things they said, Spent too many nights getting out of my head, Must be mad, must be blind, Driving me crazy right out of my mind...” In other words the song is about going crazy, confused by too many voices and the drink, so you better call 911. A typical theme of the band was to get drunk and party such as ‘Nothing to Lose’ or ‘Deadline’.

The opening track, ‘Demolition Boys’ is one of the best songs with a fabulous rhythm and raucous chorus, “things used to be different for me, till I heard the noise, demolition boys, demolition boys...” The riff is killer all the way and a prime example of aggressive 80s metal.

Other great tracks are ‘Not for Sale’ and ‘Take It All Away’. The latter song features an infectious chorus with harmonies that are well executed. The verses have some interesting lyrics; “One day you're up, next day you're down, Nothing you can do but just stay around, Trying to do your best, hoping they're impressed, But can you hurry up 'cause you wanna know who's next... they’re gonna take it all away.” Once again it is about standing up to the men, I assume, who are always trying to take from you and trying to make you be something you are not. Girl Power.

‘Midnight Ride’ is another highlight with a catchy chorus with repeated words that stick in your head. There are no terrible songs with everything turned up to 10 and rocking hard with attitude and flashy melodic metal grooves.

Overall the album was a solid start to the band but the followup was the brilliant “Hit and Run” and it never got better than this. “Demolition” has a lot of great metal and is worth a listen as one of the early NWOBHM albums.

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  • Pintos
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