Cleopatra Records 2015
Review by David Bowling
Girlschool was and is your basic hard rock/heavy metal band. The fact that the members were all female made them unique almost 40 years ago.
Formed in 1975 as Painted Lady, by 1978 they had morphed into Girlschool. In 1982 original members guitar/vocalist Kim McAuliffe, guitarist/vocalist Kelly Johnson, drummer Denise Dufort, and newest member bassist Gil Weston, who had just replaced Enid Williams, were touring in support of their third studio album Screaming Blue Murder. They took the stage at the Apollo Theatre in Glasgow, Scotland, May 6, 1982, and the tape was running.
Girlschool in the studio and especially live in concert is a kick-butt, in your face, no nonsense band with attitude. This definition was on display at their 1982 concert in Glasgow. Songs such as “Race With The Devil,” “Hit And Run,” “When Your Blood Runs Cold,” and “Screaming Blue Murder,” as the titles suggest, are not for the faint of heart. Early in their career they were an opening act for Motorhead, which is the ultimate training ground for a heavy metal band.
Unlike many other hard rocking female bands, it quickly becomes apparent that the music is at the center of band’s persona and you quickly forget about the male vs. female split that many times exists in rock and especially heavy metal music.
The sound is more than adequate for a concert recorded 33 years ago. Each of the musicians is distinct and there is a good mix with the crowd noise.
Girlschool is still on the road today. Original bassist Williams returned to the line-up after a few years and along with Dufort and McAuliffe form ¾ of the original group. Johnson passed away from cancer in 2007.
If you are a fan of hard rock then Glasgow 1982 will be a diamond in the rough for your music collection.