Till Deaf Do Us Part

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Till Deaf Do Us Part
Studio album by Slade
Released 13 November 1981
Genre Hard rock
Length 38:41
Label RCA
Producer Slade
Slade chronology
We'll Bring the House Down
(1981)
Till Deaf Do Us Part
(1981)
Slade On Stage
(1982)
Alternative Cover
Alternate cover
Singles from Till Deaf Do Us Part
  1. "Knuckle Sandwich Nancy"
    Released: 15 May 1981
  2. "Lock Up Your Daughters"
    Released: 4 September 1981
  3. "Ruby Red"
    Released: 12 March 1982
  4. "Rock and Roll Preacher"
    Released: April 1982

Till Deaf Do Us Part is the ninth album by the British rock group Slade. It was released on 13 November 1981 and reached number 68 on the UK charts.

Although not as successful as We'll Bring the House Down, this album sold well. The track "Lock Up Your Daughters" became a staple in Slade concerts. The album itself shown Slade with their heaviest sound. The album also was the only to feature organs throughout.

The album cover was later replaced by a group photo due to reported offence of the original although this has never been confirmed.[1]

Q Magazine listed the album at number 16 on the "20 Most Painfully Punning Album Titles of All Time."[2]

Background[edit]

Slade's minor hit of 1981


Slade's new opening track for live performances


Problems playing these files? See media help.

Following Slade's post-Reading '80 resurgence, no one was happier to see Slade back in the charts and filling venues than manager Chas Chandler. However, by this time the band and manager had not seen eye to eye for a while. Having already been relieved of his record producing duties in 1979 and with the band making their own decisions and a massive argument with bassist Jim Lea and his brother Frank about the organisation of their co-owned Cheapskate Records, Chandler knew his days with the band were numbered. The final straw was the debacle surrounding their May 1981 single Knuckle Sandwich Nancy. The band were confident that the high-speed, drum-heavy record was a fitting follow on from the similarly toned January 1981 hit We'll Bring the House Down, though Chandler and RCA disagreed. The single was half-heartedly released and flopped. The band blamed Chandler and split from him completely. Apparently bearing little ill-will, Chandler negotiated Slade's new deal with RCA on very favourable terms, selling his share of Cheapskate.

Now producing and managing themselves, Slade released Lock Up Your Daughters which peaked at #29 in the UK and entered the top 3 in Europe. December 1981 saw Slade's RCA debut and first album of all new material since 1979's Return to Base. Regardless of only peaking at #68, a few new songs became part of Slade's live set.[3] This included the perfect opener Rock N Roll Preacher which took place of Slade's longtime opener Hear Me Calling.

Release[edit]

In an interview with Noddy Holder for the Slade Supporters Club's December 1981 newsletter, Holder was asked how the title came about. "It came about because everyone always says how loud we are. We based the album around volume, all the tracks are rock and it is a loud album. The track Till Deaf Do Us Part is all about bending your ear and being deafened".[4]

For the same interview, Holder explained the new features of the album when compared to the band's previous work, "We've used a lot of organ on the album, which is used on the single as well. That's basically the only difference. We think that it's a much better sound than we've ever had before. It's a solid rock album from start to finish, except for the instrumental piece – which is a slowish theme, but all the others are fast and solid rock. There's no acoustic rock on the album like songs such as Don't Waste Your Time and Sign of The Times, which we have had on previous LPs."[4]

In the September–December 1986 Slade fan club magazine, the poll results were announced for the 1986 opinion poll based on Slade’s material. For the best album of the 80s, Till Deaf Do Us Part placed at #3.

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Rock and Roll Preacher"   Noddy Holder, Jim Lea 5:45
2. "Lock Up Your Daughters"   Holder, Lea 3:27
3. "Till Deaf Do Us Part"   Holder, Lea 3:29
4. "Ruby Red"   Holder, Lea 2:53
5. "She Brings Out The Devil In Me"   Holder, Lea 3:27
6. "A Night To Remember"   Holder, Lea 3:54
7. "M'Hat M'Coat"   Dave Hill 1:42
8. "It's Your Body Not Your Mind"   Holder, Lea 3:04
9. "Let the Rock Roll Out of Control"   Holder, Lea 4:00
10. "That Was No Lady That Was My Wife"   Holder, Lea 2:35
11. "Knuckle Sandwich Nancy"   Holder, Lea 3:14
12. "Till Deaf Resurrected"   Holder, Lea 1:05
2007 Remastered edition bonus tracks
No. Title Writer(s) Length
11. "Funk Punk & Junk" (b-side of "Ruby Red") Holder, Lea 2:57

Song information[edit]

Rock and Roll Preacher[edit]

"Rock N Roll Preacher" was an ideal show-opener which replaced 'Dizzy Mama' as an opener for each live concert. The organ riff recurs elsewhere on the album as do other musical motifs and lyrical themes, creating a thread of continuity. The intro to the track (complete with horror sound effects) was a variation on The Sunday Service, something Slade used to perform in the mid-1960s when they were the N'Betweens. Then, Holder wore a dog collar and told dirty jokes. Here, he intones a mock ceremony of the communion of rock and roll and encourages call-and-response participation from the band. The track was released as a single in Germany, peaking at #49. The track has been covered by Sapo and The Sirens.

Lock Up Your Daughters[edit]

"Lock Up Your Daughters" is an up-tempo track with the groove and high backing vocals recalling 'Sweet Box' from 1970's Play It Loud. Chris Ingham of Rock Backpages stated "with kick-heavy production pitching the track firmly in early '80s rock pop territory becoming a hit in Europe."

The track is recommended by allmusic.[5]

Till Deaf Do Us Part[edit]

"Till Deaf Do Us Part" is described by Chris Ingham as "no less monolithic, but features a few bass-note choices which sweeten the crunching guitar power chords into slightly more refined inversions. Jim Lea's overt musicality is present even when at the service of heavy rock." Holder spoke about the track in a 1981 interview "the track is all about concerts and what the crowds get up to, There’s lines in it like – Hanging from the ceiling, the balconies are gonna break – and other lines that depict what the crowds do at gigs".

Ruby Red[edit]

Main article: Ruby Red (song)

"Ruby Red" is a track which Slade had written in the late 70s, according to Noddy Holder. Chris Ingham stated "Ruby Red salutes a fun-loving girl who likes her food. Despite being a neatly constructed melodic rocker, it didn't quite make the top UK 50 as a single."

She Brings Out The Devil In Me[edit]

"She Brings Out The Devil In Me" is further proof that when it came to medium-tempo groove rockers, Slade had learned a lot from US boogie bands they encountered during their time in America. Holder mentioned that the track is "all dead filth! It's a song about a block and a chick…. And that's the end of the first side".

In a 1981 fan club interview, Holder explained the creation of the track "the song just came out of a lick that we used to jam at sound checks. I put a melody and words to it, and we had a song."[4]

A Night To Remember[edit]

"A Night To Remember" is a fast and frantic track. The track fit with Slade's live set, allowing a drum, bass and violin solo. Holder told the fan club in 1981 "A Night To Remember is an out-and-out rock track, in the Dizzy Mama vein. It’s all solid rock riffs and a bit of a boogie number. We’ll be doing this one onstage for sure. It’s a number about a guy waiting to see his chick again – there’s no real story to it, it’s basically a quickly knocked off thing with rock riffs and a good beat to it."

M'Hat M'Coat[edit]

"M'Hat, M'Coat" is an uncommon instance of a Dave Hill composition on a Slade record. Holder described the track as "an eerie number with all guitars and synthesisers on it, which is dedicated to his guru!" When Hill was asked by Record Collector if he regretted not writing more for the group Hill admitted he did, but was reluctant to upset the commercially winning Lea/Holder formula. Hill told Ken Sharpe; "I think I fell into the George Harrison trap of backing off".

In a 1989 interview with the Slade fan club, Dave Hill spoke of the song, "It's just something I used to play around with when we were touring Europe and Jim said we should record it. So, we were in the studio and Nod was bashing out a few chords and really Jim rearranged it. We really recorded it on the spur of the moment and I think that's why it turned out so well. It was the first song I ever wrote and a few people, mainly fans, said 'why don't you write some more?' and that's what got me into composing. I did a few things with Nod in the early days like 'Gospel According to Rasputin', but 'M'hat M'Coat' was my first real solo effort."[6]

In an early 1986 fan club magazine interview, Hill spoke of the song around the time of recording his own songs as demos for consideration of the band's 1987 album "You Boyz Make Big Noize". "M'hat M'coat was the only track I have ever had on a Slade album. I have never really pushed myself, or pushed anything forward, 'cos Nod and Jim write such excellent songs. It was 'M'hat M'coat' that stimulated me to write more things, because the fans had said that they liked it and that I ought to write more. If I hadn't had any reaction to that tune, I would never have written another thing, 'cos I wouldn't have had the confidence."[7]

It's Your Body Not Your Mind[edit]

"It's Your Body Not Your Mind" is an up-tempo track. Chris Ingham stated "the track is a smirking, smutty appreciation of a super-smart schoolgirl." Holder stated "it’s got all double meanings about things at school".

Let the Rock Roll Out of Control[edit]

"Let the Rock Roll Out of Control" is described by Chris Ingham as "a track that pays tribute to Slade's new audience of heavy metal fans, with Slade's own brand of metal muscle." Holder explained that the track "is all about audiences, the punters who come to the gigs and the stageshow type gigs".

That Was No Lady That Was My Wife[edit]

"That Was No Lady That Was My Wife" attempts to make a song from an old music hall joke. Holder commented on the track in 1981 "it's about all the Flash Harrys that go down the discos – a type of 'oldest swinger in town' thing. This one is especially based around Haden Donovan!"

Knuckle Sandwich Nancy[edit]

"Knuckle Sandwich Nancy" tells about a beating Holder suffered in 1978 at the hands of a Welsh bouncer he had chastised from the stage for being too rough with the audience. The track was released as a single which failed to chart which led to the band departing from long-term manager Chas Chandler.

Till Deaf Resurrected[edit]

"Till Deaf Resurrected" lets the album come to a fitting finale. Chris Ingham wrote "a Sgt Pepper like reprise of 'Till Deaf Do Us Part' with large vocal harmonies and Holder telling listeners to 'rest in peace'."

Non-album tracks[edit]

Funk Punk & Junk[edit]

"Funk Punk & Junk" was originally released as a b-side to the single "Ruby Red". Chris Ingham stated "a pokey track which reprised Slade's own 1975 single "Thanks for the Memory" groove."

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[8]
Get Ready To Rock! 4/5 stars[9]
Kerrang! 5/5 stars[10]
Sounds Magazine unfavourable[11]
Melody Maker favourable[12]

Joe Geesin of Get Ready to Rock wrote of the remaster "Till Deaf Do Us Part was another great set. Also from 1981, it opened with 'Rock 'n' Roll Preacher'; yes there's a nod at 'Let There Be Rock' but in the nicest possible way. 'Lock Up Your Daughters' dropped the boogie and was solid thumping rock song. Still classically Noddy Holder, but less cheese, not classic Slade but some damn good hard rock with that boot stomping Slade trademark. A very underrated period of the band's career."[9]

Upon release, Kerrang gave a positive review. "Slade are a much needed tonic and it's amazing in the sorry days of 81 that Britain hasn't made that much more of them. Slade still fail on chart action. Maybe it's because they're spreadeagled between two stools, undecided whether to stay as old teenyboppers and appeal to Stacey and Tracey (now married with kids but with fond memories of the past), or whether to go out and capture the suddenly fashionable heavy metal markets. Then again, many of Slade's more recent works just haven't had the same instantaneous irresistible quality of the glitter rock days or that is until this release. At last their collective stack heels are planted firmly where they belong, that old habit of writing classic material has been rekindled. Holder's in fine fettle as he squats in the pulpit for 'Rock and Roll Preacher'. Recorded with a minimum of fuss, this track comes close to capturing the feelings of Slade live, Holder chortling wickedly through every line.

It's followed by traditional Slade on 'Lock Up Yer Daughters' the recent release that seemed destined to put them in the upper reaches of the charts, but never quite made it. The title track though, forms the album's anthem, a roistering nearly messy piece of bawdy class, where they sound like the Brit equivalent of AC/DC. Funny that, have you noticed how Brian Johnson and Noddy Holder both have the same often awesome nasal tone? 'Ruby Red' and 'She Brings Out The Devil In Me' put a size nine boot through the door and there's plenty more positive noises on side two, opening with the frolicsome 'Night To Remember' followed by the ballad of 'M' Hat M Coat' a sort of Queen meeting Bauhaus concept. 'It's Your Body Not Your Mind' should justifiably be the next stab at the charts, although I haven't quite decided where they nicked the keyboard bits from. The remaining four tracks really kick up the dirt. 'Let The Rock Roll Out of Control' should sound superb live, The Was No Lady That Was My Wife, ' is played with the energy of bashing two dustbin lids together, 'Knuckle Sandwich Nancy' is a classic in Slade humour and 'Till Deaf Resurrected' is a tribute both to themselves and their audiences. Uncompromising entertainment guaranteed.[10]

In the 14 November 1981 issue of Sounds Magazine, Dave Hill (not Slade's Dave Hill) reviewed the album, stating "Here they are again, Slade, minus the shiny suits (a few guide-dogs-worth there, I’ll bet), but just the same, making a religion out of noise, drawing cartoons of themselves in the bar top slops, acting off, and being useless. Here is an album hinging entirely on the lame pun of its title: a mutilated extract of the C of E’s greatest hit, implying both blind fervour and irrelevance towards churchy ideas of properness. ‘Deaf’ - what we all crave and expect as a transitory effect of exposure to a testifying Slade. At least they come clean about the ritual nature of what they’re up to. They open with a seedy organ intro over which N. Holder proclaims the glory of exorcism through “this rock and this roll”. But what does this magnificent preamble urge us zealots into? “Lock Up Yer Daughters”. That’s what. Slade proceed to muddle their way through two sides of lads, lager and loose women (as they would have it). Bandits in a play-pen, tearaways in a time-warp. It’s sad. Not only is the record boring and deliberately thick, but it doesn’t even work on those terms. Slade sound dreadfully worn out, about as convincing as Alexander Haig on a peace march. I’ll admit though, that the guitarist comes from good stock, and that his mum and dad had plenty of taste."[13]

In the 14 November 1981 issue of Melody Maker, Carol Clerk positively reviewed the album under the headlining title Deaf before dishonour. The review stated ""Dearly beloved brothers and sisters…we are gathered here tonight to join this rock and this roll in earholy catastrophe…” So screameth the Rev Noddy Holder, and so beginneth the first track on the album, and hey! You better lock up your daughters for Slade are back - bigger and badder than ever. That the band have regained their confidence, that they’re as merciless a rocking machine as any other group in this generally heartless and synthetic year and that they’re gonna blow their crowds into tiny little pieces on next month’s tour is as plain as hat on Noddy’s head from the opening bars of “Rock and Roll Preacher (Hallelujah I’m on Fire)”. And it’s all confirmed on the following numbers - numbers like “Lock Up Your Daughters” (which inexplicably failed to devastate the singles chart as it should have), “Red Wine” and “She Brings Out the Devil in Me” – all stompers in the well-loved traditions of Slade. Other tracks like “A Night to Remember” and “Let the Rock Roll Out of Control” remind you that the band are ferocious in other aspects of the moving arts as in straightforward stomp. The final endearment is their sense of humour, evident from the tongue in Nod’s cheek that balances the rasp in his throat. It’s a humour that persuades you that songs like “That Was No Lady That Was My Wife” and “It’s Your Body Not Your Mind” are funny rather than fervent and offensive. Anybody who can rhyme “IQ” with “psyche you” has to be given the benefit of the doubt! While Dave Hill’s souring guitar instrumental “M’Hat M’Coat” points to a definite versatility, the album on the whole reaffirms Slade as one of our most enduring and uncompromising bands…till deaf do us part."[14]

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1981) Peak
position
Total
weeks
UK Albums Chart[15] 68 2

Singles[edit]

See: Lock Up Your Daughters, Rock and Roll Preacher and Ruby Red

Knuckle Sandwich Nancy[edit]

"Knuckle Sandwich Nancy"
Single by Slade
from the album Till Deaf Do Us Part
B-side I'm Mad
Released 15 May 1981
Format 7" Single
Genre Hard rock
Length 3:14
Label Cheapskate Records
Writer(s) Noddy Holder; Jim Lea
Producer(s) Slade
Slade singles chronology
"Wheels Ain't Coming Down"
(1981)
"Knuckle Sandwich Nancy"
(1981)
"Lock Up Your Daughters"
(1981)

"Knuckle Sandwich Nancy" is a single from rock band Slade which appeared on the album Till Deaf Do Us Part. It was written by lead singer Noddy Holder and bassist Jim Lea. The single was released in 1981 and failed to chart in the UK. This was the only single since Slade's 1980 comeback not to chart until 1988. The track itself has become poorly received throughout the Slade fanbase. The track became part of Slade's live set however was soon withdrawn due to negative response. At the time, the band blamed longtime manager Chas Chandler for the failure of the single and from then on began to manage themselves. This eventually led to the work with producer John Punter. Due to the failure of the single in the UK, the single was not given a release in Germany as previously planned.[16][17]

The track's lyrics refer to an incident with lead singer Noddy Holder. During a gig in August 1978 at Stoneleigh Club in Porthcawl, South Wales. A bouncer known as the Desmond Brothers began being too aggressive with the fans. Holder told the bouncers to lay off and one had replied that they'll see Holder later after the show. After the show, Holder began to head to the dressing room where the bouncer attacked him. The singer fell backwards onto the floor covered in blood, his nose broken and both eyes blackened. He was taken to Bridgend Hospital for treatment. Holder pressed charges and the bouncer was sent to jail for 3 months. Despite Holder's injuries, the following night, Slade were still performing.[18][19] Rumour was that the same bouncer was later beaten up himself by Ritchie Blackmore at a Rainbow show.

The song was originally titled "Knuckle Sandwich" until "Nancy" was later added.[20][21]

The b-side I'm Mad came from the band's 1979 album Return To Base.

Shortly before the release, the Slade fan club described the track as "in similar vein as "We'll Bring the House Down", heavy on the guitars, with Barundi type drums and losts of "c'mons" that the public can latch on to!"[20][22]

Knuckle Sandwich Nancy was covered by German band Not Fragile in 2004.[23]

No promotional video was created for the single, nor any mimed TV performances for the song. The main form of promotion was the band's live touring as the song had become part of the band's UK live set around the time of release.

Personnel[edit]

Slade[edit]

Additional credits[edit]

  • Andy Miller - co-producer, assistant producer, engineer
  • George "Porky" Peckham - engineer (cutting)
  • Mark O'Donoughue - technician (tape operator)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "SLADE @ www.slayed.co.uk". Crazeeworld.plus.com. 1966-04-01. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  2. ^ "Rocklist.net...Q - 150 Rock Lists". Rocklistmusic.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  3. ^ "Slade 1981 Till Deaf Do Us Part". My-rock-music.ru. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  4. ^ a b c "SLADE @ www.slayed.co.uk". Crazeeworld.plus.com. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  5. ^ http://www.allmusic.com/album/rogues-gallery-r205334/review
  6. ^ "SLADE @ www.slayed.co.uk". Crazeeworld.plus.com. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  7. ^ Slade International Fan Club newsletter March - April - May 1986
  8. ^ Ginsberg, Geoff. "Till Deaf Do Us Part - Slade". AllMusic. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  9. ^ a b "Get Ready to ROCK! Review of CD album resissues by rock band Slade called Whatever Happened To Slade?,We'll Bring The House Down, Till Deaf Do Us Part". Getreadytorock.com. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  10. ^ a b "Slade Bells". Sladeinengland.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  11. ^ http://www.sladescrapbook.com/cuttings-1981.html
  12. ^ http://www.sladescrapbook.com/cuttings-1981.html
  13. ^ http://www.sladescrapbook.com/cuttings-1981.html
  14. ^ http://www.sladescrapbook.com/cuttings-1981.html
  15. ^ "Slade - Till Deaf Do Us Part". Chart Stats. 1981-11-28. Archived from the original on 2012-07-22. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  16. ^ http://sladefanclub.weebly.com/uploads/7/6/6/0/7660950/1536733_orig.jpg
  17. ^ Slade Supporters Club Newsletter September - October 1981
  18. ^ Posted by Mickey P. "From Roots To Boots!: August 1978". Sladestory.blogspot.com. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  19. ^ "Slade Scrapbook Website - Cuttings 1979". Sladescrapbook.com. 1979-10-27. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  20. ^ a b http://sladefanclub.weebly.com/uploads/7/6/6/0/7660950/7540195_orig.jpg
  21. ^ Supporters Club Newsletter May - June 1981
  22. ^ Slade Supporters Club Newsletter May - June 1981
  23. ^ "Not Fragile". Not-fragile.de. 2005-11-05. Retrieved 2011-08-10.