Get this crazy baby off my head!



Chain - Toward The Blues - 1971 - Festival

"Toward the Blues" by Chain reached No.6 in 1971. It is now deservedly regarded as one of Australia's great blues albums. The album has a distinct Aussie "blues rock" sound, quite unlike early seventies American and British blue rock. Chain developed their own great brand of blues rock, and the band's albums have stood the test of time. Check out Chain's "Blue Metal" album @ CHAIN/BM and the band's "Child of the Street" album can be found @ CHAIN/COTS


32/20 blues - Johnson, Robert
Snatch is back and hold it - Wells, Junior
Boogie - Harvey, Barry/Manning, Phil/Sullivan, Barry/Taylor, Matt
Booze is bad news blues - Harvey, Barry/Manning, Phil/Sullivan, Barry/Taylor, Matt
Albert Gooses gonna turn the blues looses - Harvey, Barry/Manning, Phil/Sullivan, Barry/Taylor, Matt
Black and blue - Harvey, Barry/Manning, Phil/Sullivan, Barry/Taylor, Matt

N.B : Some 1971 issues of this album contain a seventh track, "Judgement". There is also a 14 track 2007 CD issue of the album available on Picar records. Some of the extra tracks are from "The History Of Chain" album


Barry Harvey: drums
Phil Manning: guitar
Barry Sullivan: bass
Matt Taylor: vocals, harmonica


Over 40 musicians have been a member of Chain, one of Australia's premier blues bands that has been going strong for over three decades. Formed from the remnants of Perth band the Beaten Tracks in 1968, the Chain were named by singer Wendy Saddington after the classic soul track "Chain of Fools." Saddington soon left and the band released one of Australia's first progressive blues singles, "Show Me Home," in 1969. Soon after, the Chain shortened their moniker to Chain. In June 1970, Chain recorded the classic live album, Live Chain, at Caesar's Palace discotheque, and along with other Australian acts like Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs, Carson, and the Adderley Smith Blues Band, were considered at the forefront of the Australian blues movement. Signing a new deal with Infinity, the blues subsidiary of Festival, Chain released the single "Black and Blue," which reached number ten on the national charts in May 1971. The classic album Toward the Blues peaked at number six in 1971 and is considered one of Australia's greatest blues albums. The follow-up single, "Judgement," established Chain as the nation's leading progressive blues band. Chain Live Again was released in October 1972 and Chain went on to appear at the first Sunbury Festival in January 1972. In 1973, the band singed with the new Mushroom label and issued the Two of a Kind album. Chain's rotating lineup broke up in 1974 and Mushroom issued the retrospective History of Chain album. Six years later, interest in Chain was still strong and they played at the Mushroom Evolution Concert in January 1982 to celebrate Mushroom's tenth anniversary. They re-formed permanently in 1983 and released Child of the Street in October 1985. Their next album, Australian Rhythm and Blues, was released in April 1988, followed by Blue Metal in May 1990. Several members undertook a tour of Australia in 1991 as Blues Power, while another member, Matt Taylor, toured as Matt Taylor's Chain, who released the album Walls 2 McGoo (Trouble in the Wind) in 1992. The original Chain again undertook a national tour in 1995. © Brendan Swift, All Music Guide


Since the late sixties and early seventies, Chain has been the most influential blues/rock band in Australia. They have put an indelible stamp of an Australian style on blues music that no other act has done.. Although they individually and collectively learnt the music of the American greats and were influenced by the British blues of the sixties, they interpreted blues in a way no-one had done before… and they were different in other ways too! Their chart success in 1971 was generated by their following, not a record company push. They became known for their dedication to original music and were, in a sense, a reaction to the mindless copying of overseas acts that so many Australian bands indulged in at the time. (There were a few very notable exceptions of course) They also became an iconic symbol for the working class, performed songs that represented the feelings of the anti-Vietnam War movement, and were more suited to the alternative life-style people of the late sixties / early seventies than the mainstream pop world. Chain formed in late 1968 in Melbourne, Australia with members of the ‘Beat’n’Tracks’ adding Wendy Saddington as singer. The band immediately captured the imagination of the vibrant underground music scene of the day with their musicianship and cohesion, the result of dedicated rehearsal and an original attitude. The lineup changed over a period of time until by 1970 original member Phil Manning (guitar and vocals), bassist Barry Sullivan and Drummer Barry Harvey were a loud brash trio and living in Brisbane. With the joining of Matt Taylor (Phil had worked with Matt previously in the Bay City Union) on vocals and harmonica the band took on a tougher, bluesier edge and returned to Melbourne, on the way stopping in Sydney and recording what today has become one of the classic songs in Australian rock music history. ‘Black’n Blue’ smashed the charts and went to number one in Melbourne as Chain created incredible interest with their totally original take on blues/rock. Another single ‘Judgment’ (no 2 on the charts) and a gold album were unprecedented for any blues-based band at the time, yet the lineup lasted only 11 months before changing yet again. Matt Taylor recorded an album of his songs with the members of Chain and had a huge hit with ‘I Remember When I Was Young’, another classic song from that era. Although there have been a number of members pass through the band, the ‘Black’n Blue’ lineup is the one their audience hold most dear, as well as being the most commercially successful. For more than the past decade the lineup of Matt Taylor, Phil Manning, Barry Harvey and Dirk Dubois (bass) has been a constant one. Matt Taylor continues to front Chain in his entertaining laconic style, and collectively the band has the relaxed cohesion that comes from a lifetime of playing. They are still as original as ever and are credited with establishing ‘Oz Blues’ as a bonafide stylistic variation of its American father. Chain is honoured at each year’s ‘Australian Blues Festival’ (Goulburn, New South Wales) with the presenting of ‘Chain Awards’ to the various winning performers, albums and producers. ‘Toward the Blues’ is still on general release and probably the longest permanently available rock/blues album in Australia. Recent albums are ‘The First Thirty Years’, a live recording, and ’Sweet Honey’ which is another totally original offering. They are a great live act and the experience of seeing and hearing Chain is something anyone interested in the roots of blues in Australia should have…. In fact, it is really a ‘must’! [Review 'Borrowed' with apologies and thanks, from www.philmanning.com.au]

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