Friday, August 12, 2011

MOONTAN - Golden Earring

YEAR: 1973

TRACK LISTING: Candy's Going Bad, Are You Receiving Me?, Suzy Lunacy (Mental Rock), Radar Love, Just Like Vince Taylor, Vanilla Queen

IMPRESSIONS: Uncle Donald borrowed this album and didn't return it for over a year! Finally I had to insist that my father ask him to return it because I wanted to play it and it was never around. After several visits to our house empty handed, Uncle Donald one day appeared at the door brandishing the record in his hands. At last, I could listen to the album once again! Uncle Donald was cool and I miss him. But he had good taste. The MOONTAN album of course features the perennial radio hit "Radar Love" but that's not the best song on the album by far. "Candy's Going Bad" is a raunchy rocker that would certainly be my favourite song on the album if it wasn't for "Vanilla Queen"; the trashy epic which features that splendid instrumental break in the middle. Said instrumental break was actually played over the loudspeakers of a little rollercoaster called "The Matterhorn" at Seaside Heights, NJ when I was a boy. This was a "kiddie" rollercoaster, not the regular adult kind. Basically, you went round and round on an enclosed incline at faster and faster speeds. All during the ride that summer, they would play the instrumental section of "Vanilla Queen" because frankly it's perfect rollercoaster music. Tasty to drive to as well! "Candy's Going Bad" and "Vanilla Queen" are simply two of the pinnacles of 70's glam rock and I don't care WHO knows it!
MY FAVOURITE TRACKS: Candy's Going Bad, Radar Love, Vanilla Queen

FACT SHEET: MOONTAN is Golden Earring's 9th album. Golden Earrings (they later dropped the 's') is a Dutch band formed in 1961. The group is one of the oldest existing bands in the world still performing with the same lineup. In August 2011, a postage stamp was issued commemorating their 50th anniversary. MOONTAN reached #12 on the US album charts in 1974. The US version of the LP had a different song lineup; my original vinyl LP I grew up listening to had a song called "Big Tree, Blue Sea" and did not include the songs "Suzy Lunacy (Mental Rock)" and "Just Like Vince Taylor". MOONTAN was voted the best Dutch pop album ever by Oor magazine in 2008. While the internet seems to insist there was a different cover for the US version, the LP bought off the shelves by my dad in 1974 always had the "nudie" cover art on it. So there!

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