classic and rare Australian popular music from the 1950's, 1960's. 1970's and beyond..including rock and roll, pop, beat, rock, surf and progressive, plus contemporary artists, new releases, reviews and other fun stuff



Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The Purple Hearts & The Coloured Balls...Benzedrine Beat! 1964-1970

The Purple Hearts were formed in Brisbane in 1964. The band consisted of lead vocalist Mick Hadley, lead guitarist Barry Lyde (known as Lobby Loyde), rhythm guitarist Fred Pickard, bassist Bob Dames, and drummers Adrian 'Red' Redmond (1964–66) and Tony Cahill (1966-67). Like so many Australian beat groups of the '60s, The Purple Hearts had their roots far closer to the source of the British Invasion than the sunburnt suburbia from which they finally emerged.

Although they were part of the Sunshine Records stable,The Purple Hearts were uncompromising in their attitude toward recording. Consequently, their handful of singles are enduring artifacts of their unique style, which blended blues, R'n'B and prototype psychedelic rock, a style made even tougher by the regional influence mentioned earlier. Even their name, taken from the well-known slang term for a variety of amphetamine pop pills much favoured by mod subculture, was a brash and outrageous gesture.

It is notable that Brisbane, traditionally the most conservative of Australia's state capitals, has fostered some of the country's most anarchistic rock bands from The Purple Hearts to The Saints. The Purple Hearts were tough, arrogant and pioneering and Lobby Loyde is widely acknowledged as Australia’s first true rock guitar hero – busy blowing up speaker boxes before high volume and feed-back became rock staples.

This compilation combines 14 tracks by the PHs and 7 by offshoot band The Coloured Balls.